Jacky’s on Prairie
2545 Prairie Ave.
Evanston, IL 60201
On the corner of Central and Prairie, Jacky’s on Prairie is definitely within walking distance for students who live on North Campus. And for those who don’t, a long walk means you burned enough calories to indulge in buttery French cuisine, right?
Immediately upon entering the cozy little restaurant, our waiter offered us Champagne or mimosas. A little alcohol is always the perfect way to kick off a Saturday brunch.
Next were beignets (French doughnuts), soggy in a honey bath that should have been drizzled. What’s the point in eating deep fried dough if it’s not crispy?
The bread between courses was greasy and bland. The butter was rather flavorless as well, cementing my belief that olive oil trumps butter. Oil tastes better and is healthier, but I guess it would be out of place at a French restaurant.
Our waiter kept us entertained, albeit inadvertently, beginning every statement with, “I’m sorry to bother you…” He was just doing his job. There was no need to apologize.
I ordered the Lemon Chicken Tajine, which was definitely more Middle Eastern than French. The portion was generous and the couscous was satisfyingly moist with chicken juices, but it could have used more almonds for texture. The chicken, on the other hand, was salty, dry and tasted nothing of lemon. I’m still thirsty as I write this and it’s been five hours. I’m thinking I should have stuck to something simple, like the salmon salad.
For dessert, I had mediocre, stale Profiteroles au Chocolat (puff pastries with chocolate sauce – think cream puff sundaes). It was a disappointing end to a disappointing meal.
I had high expectations for Jacky’s and wanted to like the restaurant because I’m all for sustainable, organic and local food. But in all honestly, the food wasn’t good. I know the owners of Jacky’s own Blind Faith Café, which I was really looking forward to trying as well. After this meal, I’m not so sure.