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“Now known as Benjamin Tappas”
Review of Benjamin Tapas - CLOSED

Benjamin Tapas
Price range: US$15 - US$30
Cuisines: Contemporary
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special Occasion Dining
Dining options: Dinner, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Cross street: Central and Second
Transit: Metra Union Pacific North Line. Highland Park stop is a 2 minute walk.
Description: We support many local distributors by obtaining products from local farms, artisans and boutique food growers. We will do everything on our part to stay as “green” and all natural as possible. Our focus is to provide top quality food and beverage within an elegant yet comfortable dining atmosphere at a an affordable price. You may also enjoy the celebrated cuisine of Benjamin Restaurant in the comfort of your own home with our full service catering. Choose from a selection of delicious offerings on our menu or allow us to create a customized bill of fare exclusively for your event.
Reviewed 19 July 2013

This establishment recently re opened as a Tappas dining experience. We are happy to report they have pulled it off very successfully! We sampled 4 dishes from Tiger Shrimp to Mushrooms all with delightful sauces. The service was very attentive and we are telling our friends to give this place a try. The menu variety means everyone can find something they like. Deserts also great. Pricing is very reasonable. Parking is easy to find in the downtown area.

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1  Thank Robert T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviews (15)
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2 - 6 of 15 reviews

Reviewed 6 July 2013

In Spain, tapas are often bar food, light snacks or appetizers that tide patrons over before the lunch break -- 2:00-to-4:00 p.m. or between the end of the work day and dinner which can be between 9:00 and 11:00 p.m. or even midnight. I've been disappointed by tapas in Chicago area restaurants because they weren't small like Spanish tapas and they weren't very creative. Not so at Benjamin's. The tapas are the size of Spanish tapas, meaning you can find three filling, especially if you're dining with other persons and share bites from each of their tapas.

Each menu item has a number, so I ordered by number, first from a list of cold tapas.. Knowing Spain was famed for its olives, I ordered Number One, marinated olives. These were a variety of some 50 small olives, with the rich taste of excellent olives but small enough so that together, they constituted an appetizer. Next I had Number 2, cubed Spanish cheeses and sliced fruit -- no crackers, again the dish was appetizer-size. My third item, Number 22, was a hot tapas, artichoke hearts in a rich sauce, each bite a pleasure. My dessert on the reverse side of the menu was unnumbered but wonderfully yummy: Plantano Con Helado, banana in a caramel sauce. Two in our party ordered the sangria but didn't think it as good as the sangria offered by the Columbia restaurant chain. The cost: with drinks and tip, $33.00 a person. We'd heard the new focus on tapas had customers lined up on the sidewalks waiting for a table. Actually, we learned, reservations are available Fridays and Saturdays.

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1  Thank federico48
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 January 2013

I have lived in highland park for 8 years and was looking forward to trying this restaurant for a meeting with 7 other close friends. When we first stepped in I really enjoyed the contemporary look and indoor decor. The evening went quickly down hill from there. We started out at the bar with a few round of drinks. Service was okay, but the prices were pretty high....$9 for draft beer really? After being seated for dinner a we a bit overboard and ordered about half the appetizers on the menu. Our entire group was pretty disappointed with the appetizers. Some of them were okay but others were very overcooked and just didn't taste good. Dinner was the same. Meals were mediocre at best and a few were just awful. Our good friend of mine ordered the ribeye which was the worse looking and tasting steak that he ever had. We actually had fun making fun of the steak most of the night. Inside and out it was a pathetic looking meat that looked like it was cooked in a microwave. So the entire group gave Benjamin's a big thumbs down on food quality but the worst part of the evening came at the end when we got the bill. During the meal the staff brought us a round of drinks that we did not order. So we refused the drinks like any normal person would. Low and behold at the end of the night, they still charged us for the drinks. We notified the waiter of the mistake and he refused to take the charges off the bill claiming it was the managers decision. At that time, we didn't put too much of a fuss up and just paid the $800 bill . On the way out I stopped to talk the manager to let me know that it "wasn't cool" that they decided to charge us for those drinks that we didn't order and did so without even telling us they were going to charge us. The manager was very rude and completely unapologetic. He actually aggressively argued with me about how we did order the drinks. How would he know, he wasn't even near our table the whole night? You'd think after spending that much $ for dinner you'd be treated with a little respect and gratitude? I guess not here. Overall very odd and disappointing experience. Obviously there are some material issues with the consistency of the quality of the food, and an issue with the quality/honesty of the staff. There are a lot of great restaurants in Highland Park and High wood with great food and service, this is definitely not one of them.

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7  Thank zdream67
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 December 2012

My visit to Benjamin Restaurant today to celebrate a friend's birthday was magnificent. We had wonderful food and great service from Tony, our server--all adding to this memorable day. The restaurant changes the menu seasonally, so there are always surprises on the menu along with some selections that remain. This restaurant is a must try!

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Thank roseyswan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 December 2012

We came here after a movie..reservations were honored -- plenty of empty tables at 8 pm Friday night -- and we chose to sit upstairs. The two-level dining room is not crowded, but it does make the most use of its space for tables, a bar and banquet seats, which I hate! Menu selection seemed to be long on meat, and sandwiches, but short on fish...only salmon was offered. Pleasant service, prompt, attentive. The Beets3 starter was great! Tasty and nicely presented. I had steak; she had lamb chops. Plentiful but not gross servings nicely plated and presented. The frites were just fine; the wild rice and quinoa combination was not. I asked the server if the wild rice had quinoa in it; she said no, it was quince. That's a fruit, so I assume it was just confusion about the "q's" on her part and mine. Wines are $8 a glass for house servings...i think the wine by the glass selection is much too limited and the bottles are priced as you might expect -- three to four times retail for what I would think are modest, non-vintage offerings. We were taking our time, which prompted one of the friendly and attentive servers to give us a friendly admonition to "stay as long as you want...we don't close til 11." As we left (before 11!) seems that ever person on the staff thanked us...nice touch, I thought.

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Thank 2jbsdad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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