Restaurant Review: Raw

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while now, then you may remember that I’ve wanted to try Raw. since I set eye upon it during my first trip to the Chicago French Market about three years ago.  You might even remember when I missed the HLS meetup there in 2010.  Well, I finally did it friends!

Last Wednesday I met up with the very sweet and awesome Diana from Veggie Next Door for lunch at Raw.  I met Diana through my bestie Laura, and have been reading her blog and tweeting with her for a couple of months now.  As it turns out, her and I work pretty close to each other and within walking distance of Raw.  I finally had a partner in crime for a lunch at Raw.!

There are a ton of options available, and everything is packaged grab-and-go for a quick-lunch or dinner.  The options were a bit overwhelming at first, but that didn’t last long.  Diana recommended I go with the sampler platter since it gave me an opportunity to try a lot of their offerings.  I decided to heed her advice and go for the sampler platter and get a little taste of everything. The Sampler Platter included the spaghetti and marinara with a “meat”ball, garden burger, ravioli, and a dessert. Everything tasted amazing, and I was surprised by how much of it tasted like the “real” thing.

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The spaghetti (top left) was my favorite closely followed by the ravioli (top right). I actually LOVED the ravioli filling, but the wrapper didn’t quite do it for me with its slight crunchiness. Oh wait, I forgot about the lemon bar (bottom middle). The lemon bar was definitely my favorite item.

The staff is extremely friendly and very enthusiastic. They’re also incredibly helpful. Plus Raw. is extremely generous with the samples so you can get a good idea of what you might like before you buy something. I got to sample the salmon pate sandwich, the empanadas, and a third item I can’t remember right now.  I wasn’t 100% sold on the raw bread, but the salmon pate was so good that I foresee myself getting it in the future.

I did think it was a bit pricey. When you consider the amount of time and energy that goes into the production of making really good raw food, I can forgive the cost, but it will definitely make me think twice about eating here regularly.

So breaking it down:
+ Delicious food
+ Generous samples
+ Awesome staff
– A little bit pricey

Overall I was extremely impressed with Raw, and will definitely be going back.