A trendy upscale Bar/Restaurant in downtown Chicago $$-$$$
It’s super easy for your bill to rack up here thanks to their giant multi-ethnic menu with lots of seafood and healthy options! Mind you, there are PLENTY of artery clogging items, but you can easily avoid it do so you choose to.
I looove the fresh seafood here and wonderful service! Make reservations for SURE if you wanna come on a Thursday, Friday, or Saturday night!!!
Click here for the menu and Hub 51 website!
Yummm, now check out what the bf and I ordered. We shared the first 3 appetizers and only didn’t finish the salad.
Ahi Tuna Poke
“No.1 ahi tuna, Avocado, Asian rice crackers” $14
Verdict: if only there was more…tuna that is!
Nick’s Review: The tuna flesh was fresh, firm, and perfectly marinated in ginger soy sauce that had just enough spiciness from the ginger and not overly salty. The avocado was fresh, a little under-ripe, but well-complemented with the the darker color and firmer texture of the tuna. The Asian rice cracker provided an excellent textural contrast by giving the dish a crunch to scoop up the tuna and avocado. The rice did not add that much to the dish flavor-wise, but helped to fill our stomachs and hold up the rice crackers for a more dramatic presentation.
“Yellowtail, Tuna, Salmon, Crab” $15
Verdict: I would totally order this again, but it’s pricey for an appetizer at $15!
My Review: There was the decent amount of rice-to-fish ratio so that each bite was flavored with the fresh, but mild flavors of the seafood inside and on top of the roll. The minced crab meat inside the roll was not overly -satly (like that of many restaurants) and had a flaky texture which complemented the smooth and chewier texture of the sahsimi and avocado toppings. However, the extra-slim slices of sashi on the top of the roll did not have strong enough flavors to overpower the crab that was stuffed in the middle.
“Gently Poached Shrimp & Fresh King Crab, Radicchio, Green beans, Jicama, Red Pepper, Celery, Carrots, Edamame, Tomatoes, Hub Vinaigrette” $18
Verdict: HOW DARE YOU CHARGE ME $18 for this!!!!!! RWWAAR
My Review: The salad was too bland as even though all the ingredients were fresh and colorful, the selection of those particular vegetables did not come together. It would have been great to have at least one more flavor-rich ingredient such as avocado, mango, artichoke, or even diced tomato to give the dish some sort of “anchoring” flavor. Even the dressing itself was not particularly memorable, simply a tart italian vinegarette. I also found all the vegetables in the salad to be too crunchy and not enough leafy greens to balance it out. However, that being said, the cold, freshly chopped jicama and edemame were particularly refreshing, and the seafood was fresh.
Filet Mignon Steak Tacos
“Grilled Beef Tenderloin Cooked to your Liking” $18
Verdict: The bf’s main was apparently excellent, but not worth $18
Nick’s Critique: The steak was EXTREMELY tender and well-seasoned. The creamy guacamole blended well with the spicyness of the beans and the spicy sauce. The pico de gallo was flavorful and gave the taco an extra punch. All in all, a delicious dish that blended textures and flavors extremely well.
“Rosemary marinade, White beans, Grilled artichoke hearts” $23
Verdict: Yummy beans, flavorless fish…lucky for them I don’t mind THAT much.
My Critique: The fish was disappointingly under-seasoned. There was no flavor at all and needed salt and pepper on the table to complement it. It was also slightly overcooked so it was no longer soft and easy to take apart with a fork, requiring the use of a knife. However, the charred crusty grilled edges gave the fish crunch and a smoky flavor that was the only flavor I got from the fish. The artichokes had been clearly marinated in vinegar for a very long time, as all I tasted from them were sourness and the oil used to grill them. However, the beans were extremely delicious, buttery, and flavored well with lots of fresh parsley and other herbs. It became the focal point of the dish even though the fish was supposed to be the star.
Verdict: MOIST MOIST MOIST! but…so much frosting it got too sweet…eek!
Critique: The cream-cheese frosting was a little bit sour, but the vanilla whipped cream was light and sweet. The carrot cake was extremely moist and smooth, but the frosting was a bit too rich.
Taste: 4/5 (We were really happy with most of the dishes!)
Originality: 4.5/5 (SOME very innovative dishes, but I love the worldly-ness of the menu)
Plating: 4/5 (It’s pretty darn good…did you see the tuna???)
Value: 2.5/5 (You can do better…unless you like the whole trendy bar/restaurant in one venue thing)
Service: 4/5 (Impeccable server, but terrible wait!)