Banquettes look so inviting, cozy, romantic—the cushioned backs, the nifty upholstery, the closeness with your date. But at Azucar Tapas (2647 N. Kedzie Ave.; 773-486-6464), the bench is so narrow, it’s tough to cuddle, let alone share a few small plates and a bottle of wine, when half your butt is in midair and the other half is in danger of sliding off the seat. Then there’s Il Covo (2152 N. Damen Ave.; 773-862-5555), where either the table is too high or the banquette too low and you’ve got to do an upper arm stretch just to reach your fork. Maybe a booster seat to go with the pasta and vino.



illustration: alanna cavanagh