This hip uber-urban extension of the popular French Market stand offers traditional banh mi and soups at lunch and a more ambitious upscale menu at dinner. That’s when brightly innovative turns on classic Vietnamese dishes stretch globally, as in a quinoa salad of hen of the woods (mushrooms) and roasted baby eggplant with roasted garlic shallot purée. The same goes for the grilled confit octopus on cuttlefish-ink rice spiced with Japanese togarashi. Cao lau—fresh egg noodles to mix with braised pork cheeks, Chinese broccoli, pork rinds, fish cake, and housemade sambal—makes a fine shareable entrée. Impressive wines.
MULTIPLE LOCATIONS: Chicago French Market, 131 N Clinton; 312-496-0094.