Nick's is back-to-basics at its best. American chow has never been better - fish, steaks, pasta, chicken - whatever, you can't go wrong. The rich wood ... More
Nick's Fish Market
Nick's is back-to-basics at its best. American chow has never been better - fish, steaks, pasta, chicken - whatever, you can't go wrong. The rich wood and leather decor underscore the hearty atmosphere and its offset by the always-tuxed wait staff. If you're hungry then Nick's Fish Market is for you.
Visited Nicks for a birthday party getaway on a weekend evening. Service and the knowledge of our waiter was wonderful. Very good description of the specials. All eight people in the party was wonderfully satisfied with their dishes of fish and bone-in dry aged steaks. Lobster bisque exquisite. As an added bonus, we were given gift certificates to use as a later date celebrating 30 years of business. Food pricey but worth it for a night out without the kids. Will return in the near future.
Chicago has amazingly good seafood available at the best restaurants flown in and very fresh. Unfortunately Nick's is getting by on its reputation and the quality of its seafood isn't in line with its prices. The shrimp cocktail was made with obviously frozen shrimp rather than fresh. Everything was just a little staid and old fashioned and the fish wasn't as fresh as you'd expect from a restaurant of this quality. Avoid it unless you want the ambiance.
I stumbled on this place while in Chicago for a conference. The special of the day, a grouper from Florida with scallops and shrimp in a slightly sweet sauce, grilled and then finished en papillote, was heavenly. The Manhattan clam chowder was spicy, full of chunks of tomato, vegtables and, of course, clams, was great. The service was impeccable, and friendly. Even though I was on my own, and reading a book, I did not feel I was treated like an afterthought.
I have had lunch downstairs a few times in the last month, but really enjoy the newly renovated upstairs. There were 3 of us meeting after work and we knew we wanted drinks and something to eat. We sat at a table and our drink orders were taken rather quickly. The menu upstairs is different that downstairs- it seems to have had more appetizers and sandwiches. We ordered a few appetizers, 2 cups of Lobster Bisque, and the tuna sandwich and shared everything and it was all fantastic. The Chicken Nachos, lobster bisque, and the Tuna Steak Sandwich were eaten in a matter of seconds (so it seemed.) Downstairs seems to be more business oriented & and higher end- upstairs is more casual- I enjoy both floors depending on my mood and my dining companions.
Nick's is a restaurant that just doesn't deliver all that it promises. Based on other reviews and a wonderful location, middle of downtown in the theater district, I have selected Nick's as a restaurant for a special occassion more than once. I should have learned my lesson the first time.
What Nick's offers is an overpriced menu and a plain atmosphere that one can find on any street corner in Chicago. The food is adequate, and depending on your luck that night it might even be good. I have yet to find that luck when it comes to the service encountering either the pretentious or the haughty, but not yet anything closely resembling attentive or caring.
So why have I chosen Nick's on more than one occassion? Because it is a seafood restaurant, and I like good seafood. For being located in the middle of the continent, the quality of Nick's seafood is better than average, but just barely. It can hardly qualify as truly a great restaurant of any kind. And for the prices it charges it should be a truly great restaurant. I am in possession of a $50 gift certificate to Nick's which will go unused. Why? Because my last meal there cost nearly $200 for just three people, and none of us ordered drinks. I shared my last disappointment with Nick's which is where the gift certificate came from. I view it as a come-on, a prmotional tool to get me to repeat my previous mistakes yet again. I don't think so. Once can be a mistake and everyone deserves a second chance. Nick's has had that chance and been found wanting. To go a third time....shame on me.
In a town crammed with great restaurants, this one is definitely in the upper echelon. I went with my girlfriend and another couple. The ambiance was swanky yet romantic. A previous review mentioned that table placement was conducive to good conversation and I must aagree. It feels very intimate at your table.
We were all impressed wit hthe food and did a lot of 'Taste Testing'. The swordfish was amazing. Very flavorful, cooked in parchment so it remained moist and firm, great texture. I ordered the Sea Bass crusted with Parmesan. This was much more delicate than it sounds. It had a lot going on flavor wise. We all shared the carmelized scallops and agreed they may have been the best scallops we had respectively tasted.
The serveice is top notch. Our service team (it was a 5 star team effort) never had us wait for anything and stayed just a step ahead of our dining experience.
(they have a few Cakebread wines on the list. Most Excellent. If you don't really know wines, order one and nobody has to know)