Eat Al Fresco: Elle on the River

May 20 2014 - 1:00 PM

Opening this week, Elle on the River is the offshoot of Chef Tim Graham’s Travelle. Weather permitting, a very reasonable, stripped down menu of four “Mediterranean tacos” is served on the lovely patio at the Langham Hotel. The unique taco shells are made with chickpea flour and fall somewhere between socca (the chickpea pancakes that you find in Nice, France) and a flatbread, such as roti. They hold up well to the various fillings, tearing less than traditional corn tortilla.

Out of the four, my favorite is the piri piri chicken (pictured above) with pickles, cheese, and pepper aioli. The most interesting, though, is the vegetarian option, filled with crispy chickpeas, tabouli, and red cabbage. Maybe it’s just me, but the crunchy chickpeas remind me of unsweetened Peanut Butter Cap’n Crunch cereal. It is unexpected and addicting. Other options include a tasty mahi mahi taco with lemon, quinoa, and avocado, and a more decadent one with pork shoulder, radish and, interestingly, tzatziki sauce.

Beer and wine is available, as are three punch bowls that can be ordered in various sizes. I find punches are often too sweet, but The Better Than a Bradford (gin with watermelon, lemon, and basil) was delightful. It would be easy to crush one too many of these on a warm evening after work.

Elle on the River (at the Langham Hotel)
330 N. Wabash Ave