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“Never again”

Charcoal Oven Restaurant
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Ranked #49 of 207 Restaurants in Skokie
Dining options: Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Chicago, Illinois
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Never again”
Reviewed March 12, 2011

The previous review was too kind. The drinks were good. Aside from that, though, the ribs I ordered must have been originally prepared during the Eisenhower administration. My wife's "pork" was inedible. And the service was indifferent at best. I usually like old-fashioned supper clubs like this. You go in without any high expectations and it's usually a pleasant experience. Not here. And the prices were high on top of it. Never again.

  • Visited February 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank youfood
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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52 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    19
    10
    8
    7
    8
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Villa Park, Illinois
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“IT WAS EMPTY FOR GOOD REASON”
Reviewed March 6, 2011

I passed this place and scribbled down the name as I was enticed by the old fashioned sign. After reading their webpage I decided to drive the 25 miles to check it out. I was wondering why it was virtually empty at 730 on a Saturday night. It eventually was about 30% full with only one waitress for the entire dining room. So service was SLOW and the food was a 4 on a ten scale. The suggested ribs were not hot, badly needing more sauce, very dry and suspectedly from the day before or perhaps frozen. My steak was pathetic. Their premier most expensive steak tasted a bit like liver and really lacked a char broil presence. The pork was poor. The chicken liver was good. Salads very normal with good dressing. A very loud table in the center was repeatedly told to "shhhh" by other tables.

  • Visited March 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank cookandeatit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
skokie, illinois
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“I couldn't believe what I found!”
Reviewed February 20, 2010

A high School friend treated my lady friend and I (we all went to the same high school 60 years ago) to dinner. The ladies split a rack of lamb and I had the calves liver. From the appetizers to the cups of coffee at the end..........what a fantastic meal! The ladies each got a full salad....no extra charge. They even split the rack for each of the ladies. They gave me a knife for the liver...............I never used it. My fork was all I needed. The grilled onions were placed between the 2 thick slices of liver and they were not greasy.

My friend has eaten at nearly every fine dining restaurants on the North Shore as well as in Arizona, Florida, California, Paris, Osaka, China, Israel, and ..............others. She just raved about the meal. No complaints and she does complain. Once sent back an $82 Porterhouse steak because it wasn't cooked to her order.

We will be back and back.

Loved the 2 tomatoes given to us in a bag on the way out.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank fldortax
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
1 review
“Don't Bother”
Reviewed February 1, 2010

After years of passing this restaurant, we decided to stop last Saturday night for dinner. It had all of the earmarks of being a nice, old-time suburban steakhouse. What a mistake. It was a local steakhouse alright ... but with the same prices as the best downtown steakhouses near my home.

The included "appetizer" was Greek lasagna -- lukewarm, uninspiring. The salad was a predictable, common lettuce salad highlighted, however, by a delicious homemade dressing ... and accompanied by enjoyable fresh rolls.

When the prime rib arrived, however, it was also lukewarm, rather fatty and NOT tender. We brought the temperature issue to the attention of the second waitress (I think the founder's daughter) who huffed rather noticeably and took the plates back to the kitchen (we couldn't tell if she was unhappy with us or with the chef). But there was very little difference when the food returned. Nonetheless, we finished dinner because we were hungry ... and ended with a cup of coffee.

Tab? We had each enjoyed a well made drink in advance of dinner, but for nearly $100 before the tip, and with no dessert, we felt that the food, setting, and overall experience were extremely overpriced.

Most people today are still willing to pay for good food, and many of them are accomplished cooks who recognize quality ingredients and service ... and can tell when anything less is brought to the table.

There are many better suburban restaurants along the North Shore. Let me suggest that you try one of those instead of The Charcoal Oven ... which we both agreed was very disappointing.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank EAS92
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Illlinois
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“The best restaurant in the metropolitan area!”
Reviewed January 26, 2010

We celebrate all family events at this restaurant. The food and service are outstanding, and the owner and her husband have become like family. A marvelous, warm atmosphere. And both the interior and exterior have been cleaned up and redone beautifully. Always an evening to look forward to.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank foodboo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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