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“Takes Me Back to Spain”
Review of Mercat a la Planxa

Mercat a la Planxa
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Ranked #69 of 9,899 Restaurants in Chicago
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $31 - $50
Cuisines: Spanish
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special occasions, Bar scene
Dining options: Breakfast, Late Night, Dinner, Lunch, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Neighborhood: Downtown / The Loop
Cross street: Balbo
Transit: Nearest Red-line Stop is Harrison, head east on Balbo, restaurant is on the corner of Balbo & Michigan. Bus lines are the #3, #127, #129 all three stop at the entrance of Mercat a la Planxa.
Description: Mercat a La Planxa features an extraordinary selection of tapas dishes from cut-to-order charcuterie and cheeses to fresh seafood, steaks and chops, all inspired by Barcelona & Spain's Catalan region. The impressive menu includes an emphasis on meats and seafood served a la planxa or grilled-to-order. At the bar enjoy a tempting array of seasonally inspired sangrias, Spanish-styled cocktails and martinis, and for the wine lover choose from our extensive collection of Spanish cavas, and our carefully selected wine list featuring 40 Spanish wines available by the bottle or by the glass. 3 Private Dining Rooms available for that special event you are planning. From boardroom luncheons and corporate events to anniversary dinners and birthday brunches, Mercat is the perfect location for any celebration!
Reviewed August 9, 2014

I will start by saying that this meal cost me a small fortune, but I actually don't care: it was such a beautiful evening. As a tapas (small plates) restaurant, I surprised myself by not ordering tapas. Instead I went for the spinach and fig salad -- AMAZING! New and beautiful with every bite -- and an Ibirico pork shoulder -- Unlike any pork I've ever had! The salad was big the entree was small and I was very full and very happy!

My first clue that I was going to enjoy the food came with the house flat bread with Romesco and suddenly the distinctive perfume of Spanish olive oil, which is very different from its more eastern cousins, was right there to signal that this is the real deal. When this very same olive oil showed up on the dessert plate of chocolate croquettes, I was shocked but instantly sold on the idea after the first bite.

The wine was beautiful and the outdoor seating provided glimpses of the Wednesday evening fireworks on the shoreline. The only disappointment was that they were out of espresso and so offered coffee instead. It was fine, but not the finish I wanted. Still the meal was rich and delicious -- and still needed to be worked off the next morning in the hotel pool. If it hadn't been so expensive, I'd have gone back again and again and again! It was a treat and it was worth it!

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1  Thank SyrinxSounds
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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469 - 473 of 864 reviews

Reviewed August 8, 2014

This is an incredible restaurant. Strongly suggest letting the chef make the choices for you. Incredible wine list and educated staff.

Thank Alotto4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 8, 2014

We only had the chance to have breakfast here, as it was right in our hotel. It was very fresh and delicious. The service was decent, but seemed a little short staffed. Prepare to pay approx $50 for 2 people for breakfast.

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Thank jesaco1114
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 5, 2014

If you like trying different foods that you would have never thought of before, this is the place for you. I took the waiter's recommendations and was not disappointed - lamb, cheeses, dates, butternut squash dumplings. Service was a bit slow in getting drink refills, bit otherwise very good. Even had a nice table by the windows with a view of Grant Park.

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Thank cemckeon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 4, 2014 via mobile

Some people rave about the deep dish pizza in Chicago. We rave about this 2nd floor tapas place.

The chef's tasting menu was a hit with some unexpected winners. The cauliflower was a revelation of flavour that is rarely experienced with this vegetable. The squash dumpling on a bed of ground lamb was a fantastic blend of savoury lamb and naturally sweet squash. The prawn left something to be desired.

We will be back.

Thank Bhazzard
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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