Perched on the airy second floor of The Langham, Chicago, Travelle Kitchen + Bar is a chameleon of a hotel restaurant: it’s simultaneously as casual and as upscale as its diners make it. With chef Tim Graham (Tru, Paris Club) at the helm, its vast menu follows contemporary Mediterranean cuisine reaching as far as Southern France and Turkey, ranging from soups, salads and flatbreads for a casual supper, to seafood towers and caviar service to kick off a serious fine-dining experience. While sommelier Richard Hanauer (previously of L2O) stocks the cellar with a range of interesting wines, be sure to check out rare spirits such as Pappy Van Winkle's Family Reserve bourbon.
Travelle’s open floor plan allows for views of the glass-enclosed kitchen at one end and a sleek cocktail lounge at the other. At every turn, furnishings echo the historic building’s mid-century grandeur. There’s also a quixotic chef’s table surrounded by the impressive wine cellar, left transparent for oohing and ahhing between bites. The building was designed by seminal modernist architect Mies van der Rohe, who had a penchant for subtle class — brass edging, travertine paneling, dark wood accessories. This is exemplified throughout the restaurant’s aesthetic, creating a cohesive, comfortable backdrop with most of the focus on the colorful dishes themselves.