Bonjour Bakery and Cafe
Good fresh bread, even better fresh and slathered with some fresh butter and sea salt or goat cheese. Pastries are good but expensive.
The French bread here has a finer crumb, which makes it better for cooking with in many recipes (brioche for bread pudding, sliced baguette for crostini, etc).
One of the few safe places to sit down and have a good meal in Hyde Park. (An exaggeration, but not by much) Staff is friendly and accommodating, I believe the restaurant is family owned. The Jap Chae is a good bet, as are the hot soups. Marginally more expensive than most Asian restaurants in Hyde Park, but markedly better. Comforting food well prepared.
Cedars Mediterranean Kitchen
Overall, disappointing. Hyde Park’s attempt at a mid-range “Mediterranean” attempts to make up for in ambiance what it lacks in originality and quality of ingredients. The dishes I’ve sampled have been hit-or-miss, but there is better, cheaper food to be found at the Nile.
I went here for dinner last spring quarter, I will never come back. The “Asian fusion” concept is poorly executed in every sense. The decor and layout are tacky and impractical, and the food is uninspired and in some cases highly contrived. The reason I have a hard time liking Asian fusion restaurants is that so many times the product of the fusion ends up being a compromise of the originals rather than an innovative and nuanced approach to an old classic. Noodles Etc’s attempt at a trendy, mid-range fusion restaurant is no better than most cheaper restaurants in Hyde Park.
Edwardo’s Natural Pizza
Edwardo’s offers inconsistent food and consistent poor service. Giordano’s has better pizza, service, and atmosphere, though it’s farther from the quad. Either way, the only time I eat deep dish is when I’m going to dinner with friends from out of town, in which case I have better things to do than watch servers argue with each other and ignore patrons for 90 minutes.
A must. Sometimes the quality of the meat is poor, but apparently they have a 7 day return policy (?!) so I guess if you want to, you can ask for a new one. Or just shell out another $3.51 and wait 10 minutes for a second half dark meal if you’re too embarrassed to ask for a refund. Perfect when paired with a crisp champagne.
A note: everyone has their own preferences when it comes to ordering Harold’s. I usually go with the half dark fried hard mild sauce salt and pepper.