The first thought that came into my mind as I walked in the beautiful Freds at Barneys New York in Chicago restaurant is: “Above a great store is a great dining experience with a great view-what an incredible gem!”
Freds at Barneys New York currently has 3 locations in the U.S.: New York, Chicago, and Beverly Hills. Freds is owned by Barneys New York. If you’re curious, the restaurant is named after Barney’s son, Fred.
I interviewed Freds Executive Chef Mark Strausman mid-May 2015 at Freds at Barneys Chicago location. Chef Strausman was trained in some of the best restaurants throughout Europe. His menu and his wine selections certainly have a European slant. In terms of wine, expect mostly American, Italian, and French wines.
Chef Strausman stresses freshness in his ingredients and his staff sources many of their ingredients from local farmers markets.
Chef Strausman changes his menu seasonally four times a year. Freds has a loyal customer base and they are attracted by the quality, variety, and service and Chef Strausman’s greatest satisfaction is when he sees his loyal patrons invite their parents to join them for lunch or dinner at Freds.
Freds is located on the 6th floor of Barneys New York on the corner of Rush and Oak. This outstanding dining out experience is at the epic center of Chicago’s restaurant and shopping district, Oak Street is part of Chicago’s Gold Coast and is Chicago’s most prestigious shopping district.
Freds at Barneys New York definitely has a high tier feel and has a great 6th floor view of Chicago from their outdoor patio. You have a clear view of Lake Michigan looking eastbound on Oak Street.
The one thing that I remember most is that Freds Chicago has a broad menu. They offer classics and local fare and they strive to offer a wide selection on their menu. Their goal is to give their guests a “European Café” experience.
The purpose of my interview was to experience their new ‘Sunset Menu’. The focus of the Sunset Menu is: ‘Late Afternoon Snacks/Happy Hour’.
- I was introduced to two new Pizza’s that were truly unique… and delicious. The first was the Farmers Market pizza. This thin crust pizza had a combination of flavors that worked very well together. It included mushrooms, zucchini, leeks, spring onions, green garlic, and local goat cheese. The second was their Bugsy’s Pizza. This pizza included black mission figs, onion, and bleu cheese. The average menu item on their Sunset Menu is about $15 to $20 per person.
- Their Sunset Menu also offers a great selection of juices and cocktails.
- Fred’s Sunset Menu will be available from May 20th through the end of summer.
Freds weekend brunch is a fan favorite. They offer brunch on Saturdays and Sundays between 11am and 3pm.
Chef Strausman is a big fan of Chicago and its food culture. In his words, Chicago is an ‘extremely sophisticated city for food’.
Freds service is second to none. They hire experienced personnel, they provide a very extensive training program, and they hire a varied staff to support a varied clientele.
Freds Chicago provides their guests with a fine dining experience with a casual chic atmosphere and the restaurant boasts a high profile guest list from the world of politics, sports, and business.
In summary, I highly recommend Freds at Barneys New York in Chicago and I suggest that you experience Freds Chicago for lunch, Sunset Menu for late afternoons, dinner, or brunch on the weekends. Any day or time is the perfect time to visit Freds!
Freds At Barneys New York in Chicago
15 East Oak Street
Chicago, IL 60611
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