Treat: BYO American – Indian Fusion in Humboldt Park

February 08 2010 - 11:48 AM

Situated on Kedzie just north of North Avenue, right around the corner from the classic Roeser's Bakery that has been around since 1911 as well as a check cashing place with a giant inflatable gorilla on the roof (at the time of this writing).    One of the first things I noticed is that the place was full, a good sign for a neighborhood that is slowly improving and progressing with more dining options.  The next thing was the counter area with a huge espresso machine (a good way to keep a place profitable by serving coffee in the morning and dinner at night).     Billing itself as "Contemporary American cuisine with Indian influences" it did offer a unique twist by taking western dishes and adding Indian influences.   Marigold restaurant, situated in Uptown, did precede Treat by using the contemporary Indian slant, but perhaps the difference here is that there are Indian twists on very non-Indian foods (gnocchi, crab cakes, panini). 

Regarding appetizers, the potato and pea samosas were dependable, well-cooked, and fit the bill, with the standard mint and tamarind chutneys on the side.      The crab cakes had an interesting Indian twist to them with a panko crust and pea masala.   My entree was curried gnocchi, which was served with a creamed garam masala sauce, cooked spinach, raisins, fennel and mint.  My wife's salmon came with a delicious dhokla (a chickpea paste with a consistency similar to cornbread).

Dessert was a spiced apple tart (spicy as in a bit of kick) with a delicious phyllo crust not unlike a strudel, topped with black pepper ice cream.  We also shared a most, delicious, curried chocolate ganache cake.

Corkage was $4, a reasonable price for a bustling little place.  Treat fit the bill in many regards, and it was certainly worth taking the long bus ride to a neighborhood starting to see more signs of life.

1616 N. Kedzie