WINNETKA – A sense of calm came over me the minute I walked into George Trois to experience the new restaurant’s 10- course menu. It was the absence of decoration that made the space serene. The whitewashed walls were unadorned with the exception of one landscape picture hung over a fireplace, and the furniture had modern, clean lines. Only the decorative roosters resting on the mantel and the Villeroy & Bosch place settings hinted at the French country menu.
Essentially a restaurant within a restaurant, George Trois is situated in a private room just off the main dining room of Restaurant Michael in Winnetka. The space is an intimate setting, with seating for no more than 20 guests at a time.
“This is my palate now. It is serene. It is lovely,” said Michael Lachowicz, chef and owner of both restaurants.
Restaurant Michael turns 10 this year, and Lachowicz appears to be in a good place after years of abusing his body with food, drug and alcohol addictions. Cheerful and with a big personality, Lachowicz exuded excitement over his new concept restaurant that will offer a 7-course and 10-course pre-fix menu designed and prepared by Lachowicz himself.
A perfect date night, the menu is classic French fine dining that will change seasonly. Acknowledging that he spent years trying to be “edgy,” George Trois is simply a chef cooking French food in his own style. “There is great synergy in the kitchen now,” Lachowicz said.
The menu was very simple the night I dined there, listing “lobster,” “corn” or “turbo” with nary a hint as to the preparation. After enjoying the lobster medallion topped with caviar, I knew I was in for a treat. Each dish complemented the next, offering foie gras to soufflé and everything else you would expect from a French meal.
But it was the attention to detail that set the meal apart. Raisins infused with rosemary syrup were an elegant accent on the cheese plate. A chick pea frite dividing a dish of tenderloin and veal medallion, or the chopped pickled carrots that topped the passionfruit sorbet were some of the few accents that kept the meal interesting.
Sommelier Frederic Krohmer carefully chose wines that complemented the menu, and the service was seamless. The young sous chef at George Trois — Stefan Markov — is an unassuming young man who clearly has a talent for dessert. The macaron with blue cheese filling was light as a pillow and not too sweet.
A homage to Lachowicz’s grandfather and uncle, George Trois is yet another exciting addition to the North Shore’s growing restaurant scene.
The restaurant will be open to the public on Oct. 15 and is currently taking reservations.The 7-course menu is $140 per guest and the 10-course menu is $160 per guest. George Trois will be open Thursdays 6:30 p.m., 7 p.m.; Fridays and Saturdays 5:30 p.m., 6 p.m., 8 p.m., 8:30 p.m., and Sundays 6 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.
For more information go to www.georgetrois.com.