Good Fortune sounds like the name of Chinese restaurant, but in fact it’s a contemporary American spot that opened five months ago in Logan Square.
The split-level space is softly lit and sultry, highlighted by a black-and-blue color scheme, natural wood tables and scalloped fabric banquettes . The dramatically lit bar is especially attractive.
Chef Charles Welch last seen at the very good but short-lived Honey’s, cooks with Mediterranean influence and a love of vegetables. Case in point is his plate of marinated beets, with fennel and orange and a pine nut crumble. Halloumi, a Middle Eastern cheese, is the centerpiece of a dish that includes roasted figs, pickled grapes and sunflower seeds.
Pastas are especially good. Rabbit pansotti with braised rabbit, parsnips and sunchoke chips get luxury touches from foie-gras butter and shaved truffle; while rigatoni pasta, stained with black garlic, is tossed with smoked mushrooms, rutabaga and chile flakes. It’s such a sturdy dish, I bet most diners won’t realize it’s vegetarian.
Among the main courses, I’d direct you to the chicken, rolled and deep-fried to a beautiful crisp, served with apple dumplings and roasted carrots; and the excellent pork collar, under a blanket of shishito peppers and marble potatoes.
The dessert list is thoughtful, offering interesting twists by way of a poached-pear pie and a gluten-free brownie, but my favorite is the parsnip cake, a slender rectangle topped with celery root and white chocolate puree, alongside caramelized-honey ice cream and miso-ginger caramel; this is one of the best dishes I ate all year.
There’s a very good wine list and cocktail program, and my favorite touch is this little sip – a $3 drink named, appropriately, the Lemon Tiny. Sometimes, a mini-cocktail is all I want to start a meal, and this is just a smart and thoughtful option.
I give Good Fortune, 2518 North California Avenue, three stars. Good Fortune offers so many things I like in a restaurant, it’s like the owners have been reading my diary.