In August of this year my husband and I will have been together for 14 years. It’s pretty insane. We’ve been through so much, but I have to admit, each year things get even better and I love him more today than I ever have. We grew up together. From the crazy 18-year-old shenanigans, to navigating through the early years of married life, to now being parents to our precious little boy, it’s certainly challenging, but so very rewarding.
Some people ask how we keep things fresh, how do we still keep this ol’ flame alive. That is no simple answer and maybe you should check back to my post Find a Guy Who to get some insights into that, but a big part of our success is due to us making time for each other. If you follow me on snap or the gram you will see Matt and I are OUT. We love our date nights, date lunches, date breakfasts and today I want to share with you one of our most favorite date night spots.
Bavette’s Bar & Boeuf is definitely one of our favorite restaurants in the city. Bavette’s is where we go for each of our anniversaries (both dating and married). It’s where Matt took me after a day of pampering for my push present. It’s where I had the greatest mocktails while pregnant. It’s simply our happy place.
The ambiance: It is hard to beat the ambiance at Bavette’s. First, it’s not the easiest to find on Kinzie. If you aren’t paying close attention, you can easily pass it right by. As you enter you are not able to see the restaurant, rather you are greeted by the host/hostess in a little vestibule.
Once your reservation is confirmed, you are led into what seems to be a beautifully romantic jazz joint. The lights are low, the chandeliers are gorgeous, the jazz is lively and the furniture is leather, both antique yet modern. There are many signs around the restaurant giving it a french flair and the servers are super dapper wearing suspenders.
Even though you are seated in a restaurant full of people, the spacing is perfect and intimate. If you want to take the romance up a notch get a seat downstairs (if it’s opened). The candelabras with dripping wax, beautiful vintage wood carved couches, tantalizing smell of leather and meat, it’s heavenly.
The food: Seems blasphemous to say the food is better than the ambiance, but honestly the food here is perfect every time. Below find images of some of our favorites.
Once seated you get the most delicious bread you’ve probably ever tasted. It’s a french loaf, but I’m not sure what is it in, just all the best things. We start every meal with the Smoked fish Caesar. They recently changed this to smoked salmon, Matt and I can’t decide which we like best, but it’s amazing and the crispy potatoes takes it over the edge. Yes, potato chips.
From there we tend to go for seafood. If they have sea cow oysters, that’s a must (west coast). Their crab stuffed avocado is another favorite and if you have the funds go crazy and get a grand tower (full of their fresh seafood options that change depending on the season). Apps next. We typically get the duck terrine and steak tartare because why not? Steak tartare is something I can never pass up no matter where I am. It’s a steak house staple and they do it right.
For dinner I always say we should change it up more, but we stick to what we love. I’m a Maryland girl, so I switch between the Baked crab cake (duh), the lamb chops, or a ribeye. Matt will typically get the cheeseburger with all the fixings, adding bone marrow- decadent, steak and frites or the pork chop. There are so many options. Our friends swear by their fried chicken, but I’m upset it doesn’t come bone in. As for sides, love the creamed spinach, loaded baked potato, thick cut bacon and the the broccoli.
The best is saved for last, dessert. Three words. Chocolate Cream Pie. No need to get any other dessert because this is all you need in life. Chocolate graham cracker crust, the most rich, yet creamy chocolate cream mousse, topped with a beautiful, over-sized homemade whipped cream quenelle, enough for each bite of pie. Ughh, I am so hungry as I write this. May can’t come soon enough.
Need to knows: Some things you need to know about this place, that keeps us coming back.
One, while it can be hard to get a reservation at Bavette’s, if you show up right when the doors open at 5PM, they hold a certain number of tables that are first-come-first-served. Yes, it’s a bit early to eat, but you get a nice table and you have the rest of the night to celebrate however you please. Also, if you come very late, 10ish you can get a high top by the bar for an after dinner drink or a chocolate cream pie (we’ve done this).
Two, there is a sign in the restaurant that says “Free Wine”, if you ask your server or bartender about this sign you can get a free glass of wine of their choosing.
Three, while Bavette’s has the most delicious cocktails, they also have the best corkage fee. Weird right? Matt and I sometimes decide to bring our own nice bottle of bubbly or wine to start off the night and the “corkage fee” at Bavette’s is that you have to share a glass of your wine with someone at the restaurant. I think this is such a cool idea. You can either do this or pay, but c’mon share the wealth. We’ve been eating our dinner and had a glass of amazing wine come to us because we were celebrating our anniversary. Sometimes if you are good to your server, they will look out for people giving glasses away. We will often say, please give this glass to anyone sitting alone or just to a random person. It pays to be a good person, ha!
Lastly, if you are seated in the main dining (instead of downstairs), it is worth finishing up your meal and getting a nightcap downstairs. If you are on a date, downstairs is where you want to be. The bar seats are first-come-first-served and so are the couches. Snag a spot and forget about all worries. Just look into your lover’s eyes glowing from the candle light, put your phone away and connect.
As you can maybe tell I love this place and can talk about it quite a lot. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to leave a comment below or slip into my DM via the gram. Thanks for reading and I hope when you have your next date night you choose this special spot.