James Beard award-winning Executive Chef, Michael Smith, opened Michael Smith Restaurant during June 2007. While working in European professional kitchens he had learned much about discipline, and routinely prepared seasonal foods for the first time, a trend that took hold much later in the United States. Smith's culinary experiences with top Chicago restaurants, including Charlie Trotter's, Gordon, and Carlos', had taught him how to run a professional kitchen team and develop the confidence to put his food on a menu. And, when Julia Child visited the kitchen at the American Restaurant, she taught Smith about having a generous spirit among both staff and customers.
The winter menu at Michael Smith Restaurant features hearty fare, with lighter choices available during warm weather. Smith also changes 10-15 bottles on the wine list with each seasonal menu change. "We try to be within the Mediterranean and European genre of food, using what's in season and considering what we have not served in awhile," Smith says. "We offer elegant - but never fussy - fine dining."