The Florentine

Flor Plan

The Florentine Opens in the Loop

2bbef3e81065ccd56bbdf842233260f55b00963b8 PhotosThe Florentine
Chicago architect Daniel Burnham built skyscrapers with one elegant turn of phrase: “Make no little plans.”

Apparently, he was referring to dinner, too.

Welcome to The Florentine, a marble-and-crystal-clad new restaurant in a very old Burnham-designed building, with all the wine, pizza and Negronis that Italy can conjure up, opening this Thursday.

On the second floor of a building that was once a 1914 bank—one of the last buildings Burnham designed here—the menu’s overseen by the former Cibo Matto chef, who’s overseen by the former Sunda chef. Your polenta has never felt so safe.

To get to the restaurant, find your way into the new JW Marriott, where you could take the escalator in the marble lobby—but that curved marble staircase is probably more your speed. You’ll enter what feels like the dark library of a turn-of-the-century mansion, with a 2,000-bottle wine list making up the bulk of the reading material. Yes, it could take the whole day to read—so feel free to linger.

Take your breakfast meeting with clients over lump crab frittatas and MLT Sandwiches (mortadella and a fried egg). Summon your partners for lunch around the huge central marble bar, for antipasti, crispy goat cheese pizza and Sicilian Lemonade (limoncello and blood orange juice). Hold out until dinner, and you’ll be rewarded with views of Burnham’s Rookery building while sipping some bold Barbera d’Asti and twirling squid ink spaghetti.

We don’t even care if it’s yours.

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