Marshall's Landing ( 222 W. Merchandise Mart Plaza; MarshallsLanding.com ) opened its doors June 9 and since then has been a popular place to dine, judging by the number of patrons present.
When I walked into Marshall's Landing, I wasn't sure what to expect, most likely because I was greeted by a grand staircase leading up to the restaurant. However, once inside, the restaurant displayed a modern and open lounge/bar space. The seating spaces fit multiple styles. For example, the restaurant had traditional chairs for business meetings or formal dinners; then, there was the contemporary couch spaces ( my fave ) that allow you to eat in a comfy setting while overlooking the Chicago River.
Marshall's Landing's feng shui wasn't the only thing that felt right. The restaurant also offered server call pods where guests enjoyed their meals without the hassle of waiters/waitresses interrupting. When they're ready to order or need assistance, guests had the option of pushing buttons to summon servers.
Aside from the amazing service, the food was simply "to die for!" I started off with the Angry Chicken Fries, which was my ultimate favorite of the night. The dish, battered in sriracha with a side of ranch, contained just the right amount of spiciness and flavor. After that, my dining companion and I indulged in what I like to call not your traditional popcorn ( topped with truffle butter and parmesan ) and the ML Burger, both of which I highly recommend.
The housemade potato chips with caramelized onion dip followed next. Its salty and savory flavor had me going back for more. I concluded the dinner with the restaurant's mac n' cheese, which like the popcorn, wasn't traditional as well but it worked. The dish contained a smoked bacon crust and did not hold back when it came to cheesiness, which I loved.
The cocktails, however, weren't my favorite. I had the Smoke Show and the Elevator Pitch, both of which appealed to me because of their fun names. However, the drinks could use a bit more pizzazz when it comes to taste. [Editor's note: Interestingly, the drinks came with straws. However, DMK Restaurants, of which Marshall's Landing is a part, recently announced it was discontinuing the use of straws.]
Marshall's Landing is truly the place to go if you're in the mood for a modernized style and delicious bitesnot to mention the extremely affordable prices for such a luxurious location. I will definitely be making a trip back soon.