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Wednesday, Nov. 19, 2008

Short Orders (Lake Park Bistro)

Paris on the Lake

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The biggest local restaurant news of 2008 would have to be Adam Siegel’s James Beard Award as Best Chef of the Midwest. Siegel is chef de cuisine at Bartolotta’s Lake Park Bistro, as well as at Bacchus. Lake Park Bistro brings a very French feel—and an exceptional wine list—to its classic setting and fine views of Lake Michigan. During this time of the year I prefer visiting at lunchtime, when the lake is still visible. The reduced lunch menu offers a special three-course meal for $24. The standard approach would be a starter, entree and dessert. However, it is possible to substitute a second starter for dessert, which is common at restaurants in London and Paris. Try the potage de champignons, an intense mushroom soup fortified with Madeira wine. Tranches de betteraves et salade de cresson is a roasted beet salad with fennel, watercress and horseradish creme fraiche. For an entree, little will surpass the canard confit—duck leg with a perfect red wine sauce. The bistro may be pricey by Milwaukee standards, but you would never find lunch of this quality for this price in Paris.

Photo by James Kloiber