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“Will not return” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Benjamin Tapas - CLOSED

Benjamin Tapas
1849 2nd St, Highland Park, IL 60035 (Formerly Benjamin Restaurant)
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Price range: $15 - $30
Cuisines: Contemporary
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special occasions
Dining options: Dinner, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Cross street: Central and Second
Transit: Metra Union Pacific North Line. Highland Park stop is a 2 minute walk.
Description: We support many local distributors by obtaining products from local farms, artisans and boutique food growers. We will do everything on our part to stay as “green” and all natural as possible. Our focus is to provide top quality food and beverage within an elegant yet comfortable dining atmosphere at a an affordable price. You may also enjoy the celebrated cuisine of Benjamin Restaurant in the comfort of your own home with our full service catering. Choose from a selection of delicious offerings on our menu or allow us to create a customized bill of fare exclusively for your event.
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
“Will not return”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 20, 2013

I have lived in highland park for 8 years and was looking forward to trying this restaurant for a meeting with 7 other close friends. When we first stepped in I really enjoyed the contemporary look and indoor decor. The evening went quickly down hill from there. We started out at the bar with a few round of drinks. Service was okay, but the prices were pretty high....$9 for draft beer really? After being seated for dinner a we a bit overboard and ordered about half the appetizers on the menu. Our entire group was pretty disappointed with the appetizers. Some of them were okay but others were very overcooked and just didn't taste good. Dinner was the same. Meals were mediocre at best and a few were just awful. Our good friend of mine ordered the ribeye which was the worse looking and tasting steak that he ever had. We actually had fun making fun of the steak most of the night. Inside and out it was a pathetic looking meat that looked like it was cooked in a microwave. So the entire group gave Benjamin's a big thumbs down on food quality but the worst part of the evening came at the end when we got the bill. During the meal the staff brought us a round of drinks that we did not order. So we refused the drinks like any normal person would. Low and behold at the end of the night, they still charged us for the drinks. We notified the waiter of the mistake and he refused to take the charges off the bill claiming it was the managers decision. At that time, we didn't put too much of a fuss up and just paid the $800 bill . On the way out I stopped to talk the manager to let me know that it "wasn't cool" that they decided to charge us for those drinks that we didn't order and did so without even telling us they were going to charge us. The manager was very rude and completely unapologetic. He actually aggressively argued with me about how we did order the drinks. How would he know, he wasn't even near our table the whole night? You'd think after spending that much $ for dinner you'd be treated with a little respect and gratitude? I guess not here. Overall very odd and disappointing experience. Obviously there are some material issues with the consistency of the quality of the food, and an issue with the quality/honesty of the staff. There are a lot of great restaurants in Highland Park and High wood with great food and service, this is definitely not one of them.

  • Visited January 2013
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Food
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15 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Lake Forest, Illinois
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
“Great Atmosphere, Fab Food, Attentive Service”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 8, 2012

My visit to Benjamin Restaurant today to celebrate a friend's birthday was magnificent. We had wonderful food and great service from Tony, our server--all adding to this memorable day. The restaurant changes the menu seasonally, so there are always surprises on the menu along with some selections that remain. This restaurant is a must try!

  • Visited December 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
chicago area
Top Contributor
78 reviews 78 reviews
45 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
49 helpful votes 49 helpful votes
“enjoyable, frienldy place for dinner”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 2, 2012

We came here after a movie..reservations were honored -- plenty of empty tables at 8 pm Friday night -- and we chose to sit upstairs. The two-level dining room is not crowded, but it does make the most use of its space for tables, a bar and banquet seats, which I hate! Menu selection seemed to be long on meat, and sandwiches, but short on fish...only salmon was offered. Pleasant service, prompt, attentive. The Beets3 starter was great! Tasty and nicely presented. I had steak; she had lamb chops. Plentiful but not gross servings nicely plated and presented. The frites were just fine; the wild rice and quinoa combination was not. I asked the server if the wild rice had quinoa in it; she said no, it was quince. That's a fruit, so I assume it was just confusion about the "q's" on her part and mine. Wines are $8 a glass for house servings...i think the wine by the glass selection is much too limited and the bottles are priced as you might expect -- three to four times retail for what I would think are modest, non-vintage offerings. We were taking our time, which prompted one of the friendly and attentive servers to give us a friendly admonition to "stay as long as you want...we don't close til 11." As we left (before 11!) seems that ever person on the staff thanked us...nice touch, I thought.

  • Visited December 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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Northbrook, Illinois
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
18 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Nice place”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2012

Enjoyed dining here because it was fresh, clean and the service was excellent.The food was prepare and the presentation was very very good,. I had the halibut and everyone else in my party had the scallops My halibut was about 2/3 of an inch thick yet moist and tasty. Truffle fries were enjoyed by all as were the exceptional desserts. This place should be around for a long time.

  • Visited October 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Chicago, Illinois
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
“Incredible dining experience exceeded expectations!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 8, 2012

We made reservations at this restaurant last night because we were looking for a nice restaurant in Highland Park to go to before before we attended a concert at Ravinia. I read some on line reviews at both trip advisor and yelp. It sounded interesting but there were several reviews that had a negative tone too so I wasn't totally sure if we would like it or not. By the way, they offer a 15% discount off the bill if you present Ravinia tickets either before or after the show ...this was a draw for us.

Once we stepped in the door, I was delighted. Quaint, intimate, hip and fresh would be a good description. It wasn't crowded because it was 5:30pm on a Friday night. They brought incredible pretzels out with a cheese fondue dip instead of a traditional bread basket and I loved them!! I traditionally ignore all bread baskets..not wanting to fill up on bread. We ordered the Benjamin Signature Martini and I loved this drink! Martini that is spicy with tobasco sauce and blue cheese stuffed olives! I asked for the recipe before we left...... All the dishes we ordered were robust with flavor and had exquisite presentation. We ordered the crab avocado appetttizer and the scallops (must order unless you hate scallops!) and the grilled salmon for entrees. We loved both and shared the dishes. We ordered the banana chocolate crepe with Carmel for desert ..incredible. The General Manager greeted us several times and the staff was highly professional. We left there thinking what a great restaurant and we will be back with future Ravinia concerts! Go..you won't be sorry!!

  • Visited September 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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