Pump Room Catering

★★★☆☆
  • 1301 N State Pkwy

    Chicago, IL 60610

    Map & Directions
  • 312-266-0360

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Twenty feet. That is the maximum extra distance the staff would have to carry an entree to serve a diner in the lounge. Despite the fact that the castrated lounge menu boldly proclaims that "the entire menu is available" they absolutely

3
★★★★★

Twenty feet. That is the maximum extra distance the staff would have to carry an entree to serve a diner in the lounge. Despite the fact that the castrated lounge menu boldly proclaims that "the entire menu is available" they absolutely

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I should begin with a disclaimer: My wife and I went to the Pump Room on our 2nd wedding anniversary and it was on the Tuesday night following Memorial Day, so business was slow. Also, our server informed us that they had gone through a recent menu change w/ Executive Chef Nick Sutton. Now that that's out of the way--WOW. Service: A+ Appetizers: B Entrees: A+ Dessert: B+ Drinks: N/A Atmosphere: A Value: B+

We opted for the steak tartar and the lobster bisque to start. The tartar was flavorful accompanied by an overeasy egg, not my cup of tea. The bisque also had a rich, hearty flavor, but limited lobster and slightly overcrowded with fried new potatoe flakes.
My wife ordered the grilled salmon, medium. I chose the lamb, medium. Both nearly flawless. The salmon was easily the best I've tasted: fresh, subtle, savory accented with mushrooms and "spring garlic soubise". The lamb was equally satifying: tender, flavorful, simply prepared. What truly completed the lamb's impressive flavor was the side of truffled frites that played off of the meat and cipollini onions. The sauces for both entrees were absolutely sinful.

Finally we took the advice of the manager (yeah, we saw him multiple times and not because of any problems) and had the honey cake for dessert. As he had noted, it was an entertaining spin on bread pudding. Quite tasty, but not quite up the high standard of the rest of the meal.

The service was some of the best I've experienced in Chicago, where servers tend to be either underinformed or impatient. All staff was genuinely helpful and attentive. We decided against the joy of wine despite the impressively affordable wine list.
The only reason I went with the B+ for value is the high(er) prices for a limited budget and ala carte approach. Otherwise the food was incredible and the experience is one we will cherish.

2
★★★★★

I should begin with a disclaimer: My wife and I went to the Pump Room on our 2nd wedding anniversary and it was on the Tuesday night following Memorial Day, so business was slow. Also, our server informed us that they had gone through a recent menu change w/ Executive Chef Nick Sutton. Now that that's out of the way--WOW. Service: A+ Appetizers: B Entrees: A+ Dessert: B+ Drinks: N/A Atmosphere: A Value: B+

We opted for the steak tartar and the lobster bisque to start. The tartar was flavorful accompanied by an overeasy egg, not my cup of tea. The bisque also had a rich, hearty flavor, but limited lobster and slightly overcrowded with fried new potatoe flakes.
My wife ordered the grilled salmon, medium. I chose the lamb, medium. Both nearly flawless. The salmon was easily the best I've tasted: fresh, subtle, savory accented with mushrooms and "spring garlic soubise". The lamb was equally satifying: tender, flavorful, simply prepared. What truly completed the lamb's impressive flavor was the side of truffled frites that played off of the meat and cipollini onions. The sauces for both entrees were absolutely sinful.

Finally we took the advice of the manager (yeah, we saw him multiple times and not because of any problems) and had the honey cake for dessert. As he had noted, it was an entertaining spin on bread pudding. Quite tasty, but not quite up the high standard of the rest of the meal.

The service was some of the best I've experienced in Chicago, where servers tend to be either underinformed or impatient. All staff was genuinely helpful and attentive. We decided against the joy of wine despite the impressively affordable wine list.
The only reason I went with the B+ for value is the high(er) prices for a limited budget and ala carte approach. Otherwise the food was incredible and the experience is one we will cherish.

Pros: Service, amped-up comfort food, ambiance

Cons: smallish portions, parking a little difficult ($12 valet)

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I had breakfast there over the holidays and while the recent reviews were less than flattering, I found the Pump Room a delight. I had family in from out of town and my cousin had dinner there 30 years ago. While so much in life has changed over the years, the Pump Room is truely a heritage restaurant in the world of fast food and poor service.

Chicago is a great city with great food and the Pump Room still can pull it off. I had the eggs benidict with the truffle sauce - a dish I can't wait to try again! There were four of us and the food came fast and with smiles. Victor did a great job and Jaun was very pleasant.

The photos of the past celebs are all over the walls and to was nice after-dining challenge to identify them. I look forward to returning and maybe I'll get booth one like Frank!

2
★★★★☆

I had breakfast there over the holidays and while the recent reviews were less than flattering, I found the Pump Room a delight. I had family in from out of town and my cousin had dinner there 30 years ago. While so much in life has changed over the years, the Pump Room is truely a heritage restaurant in the world of fast food and poor service.

Chicago is a great city with great food and the Pump Room still can pull it off. I had the eggs benidict with the truffle sauce - a dish I can't wait to try again! There were four of us and the food came fast and with smiles. Victor did a great job and Jaun was very pleasant.

The photos of the past celebs are all over the walls and to was nice after-dining challenge to identify them. I look forward to returning and maybe I'll get booth one like Frank!

Pros: great food, friendly staff

Cons: needs a refresher but still very pleasant

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The Pump Room is a classy piano bar on the gold coast. It tends to have an older crowd, so I would recommend looking elsewhere if you are looking for a singles scene.

The Pump Room does have a dress code which important to keep in mind. Men must wear jackets and you wont be allowed in if you are wearing jeans.

4
★★★★☆

The Pump Room is a classy piano bar on the gold coast. It tends to have an older crowd, so I would recommend looking elsewhere if you are looking for a singles scene.

The Pump Room does have a dress code which important to keep in mind. Men must wear jackets and you wont be allowed in if you are wearing jeans.

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Having lunch at the Pump Room in November 2007 was the most dissapointing experience in a long while. Not only was the service horrible (50 minute wait for a cold sandwich and burger), the food itself was inedible. The burger was cold. The soup was cold. There were several wait staff milling around doing nothing really useful. We waited 20 minutes just for bread. Drinks were not refilled. Server was quite rude and there were only a few other customers in the restaurant at the time. The prices would be fine if the food and service were anything even average. Do not waste your time or money here. You can do better almost anywhere. Very very dissapointed.

0
★☆☆☆☆

Having lunch at the Pump Room in November 2007 was the most dissapointing experience in a long while. Not only was the service horrible (50 minute wait for a cold sandwich and burger), the food itself was inedible. The burger was cold. The soup was cold. There were several wait staff milling around doing nothing really useful. We waited 20 minutes just for bread. Drinks were not refilled. Server was quite rude and there were only a few other customers in the restaurant at the time. The prices would be fine if the food and service were anything even average. Do not waste your time or money here. You can do better almost anywhere. Very very dissapointed.

Cons: Everything

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I have always loved the Pump Room because I have so many wonderful memories of this place since childhood but unfortunately it is now owned by a corporation and when that happens you can say goodbye to the true old world style that made it famous with Chicago families, celebrities and royalty. I can't bear to see what has become of it. It is such a sad finalle to a fabulous landmark that I wish it could be in the hands of someone who cared to maintain it instead of a group of investors making a buck off Joe American. They made it available to everyone and now they're catering to the whims of the newly minted. In the old days the servers were very well mannered because they were actually "schooled" in social graces. That is not the case today but most of its current clientele are not schooled in social graces! This doesn't matter to the corporate owners. They will still rake in the money from tourists hoping to see where Frank Sinatra held court. The established families are no longer coming here, there are no real power lunches, no deals, in fact there is nothing that can distinguish it as a noteworthy restaurant. If you are looking for a Chicago landmark to visit go to one of the many wonderful restaurants that are still in the hands of the families that founded them. It is so so sad that the only thing the Pump Room has is a past.

0
★☆☆☆☆

I have always loved the Pump Room because I have so many wonderful memories of this place since childhood but unfortunately it is now owned by a corporation and when that happens you can say goodbye to the true old world style that made it famous with Chicago families, celebrities and royalty. I can't bear to see what has become of it. It is such a sad finalle to a fabulous landmark that I wish it could be in the hands of someone who cared to maintain it instead of a group of investors making a buck off Joe American. They made it available to everyone and now they're catering to the whims of the newly minted. In the old days the servers were very well mannered because they were actually "schooled" in social graces. That is not the case today but most of its current clientele are not schooled in social graces! This doesn't matter to the corporate owners. They will still rake in the money from tourists hoping to see where Frank Sinatra held court. The established families are no longer coming here, there are no real power lunches, no deals, in fact there is nothing that can distinguish it as a noteworthy restaurant. If you are looking for a Chicago landmark to visit go to one of the many wonderful restaurants that are still in the hands of the families that founded them. It is so so sad that the only thing the Pump Room has is a past.

Pros: Lovely Gold Coast-Ambassador East Hotel

Cons: Living off its past

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I took my lovely girlfriend to this place for valentines day and it was horrible. The service was terrible. It took forever to get our food or to order more drink. Very understaffed. The overpriced food was just ok. Nothing special. Take your girl somewhere else.

1
★★☆☆☆

I took my lovely girlfriend to this place for valentines day and it was horrible. The service was terrible. It took forever to get our food or to order more drink. Very understaffed. The overpriced food was just ok. Nothing special. Take your girl somewhere else.

Pros: ambience, music

Cons: bad service, slow service, understaffed

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An okay restaurant if you're interested in historical Chicago places and don't mind spending a bit of money. It had a very "old world" atmosphere which was intriguing but this is definitely not a great place if you want excitement and people watching. Our waiter was excellent and the food itself was of a really high quality. I give kudos to the chef in trying to create interesting food combinations but unfortunately they didn't really work. I had a prawn with pineapple and bacon appetizer which didn't really impress me. The frog leg risotto was too salty. And the crust in my white cheddar apple tart was too soft and you could still taste ice chunks in the basil ice cream. My description of my dinner should give you an indication of what sort of nouveau cuisine to expect from this place even though it has a somewhat faded atmosphere.

1
★★★☆☆

An okay restaurant if you're interested in historical Chicago places and don't mind spending a bit of money. It had a very "old world" atmosphere which was intriguing but this is definitely not a great place if you want excitement and people watching. Our waiter was excellent and the food itself was of a really high quality. I give kudos to the chef in trying to create interesting food combinations but unfortunately they didn't really work. I had a prawn with pineapple and bacon appetizer which didn't really impress me. The frog leg risotto was too salty. And the crust in my white cheddar apple tart was too soft and you could still taste ice chunks in the basil ice cream. My description of my dinner should give you an indication of what sort of nouveau cuisine to expect from this place even though it has a somewhat faded atmosphere.

Pros: good wine selection

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I went here for a birthday dinner, and was very impressed. At a restaurant with such classically elegant decor, it was a pleasant surprise to find such inventive food and unique taste combinations.

2
★★★★★

I went here for a birthday dinner, and was very impressed. At a restaurant with such classically elegant decor, it was a pleasant surprise to find such inventive food and unique taste combinations.

Pros: Ambiance, Food

Cons: Impersonal waitress

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We celebrated my wife's 40th birthday. We were welcomed by the concierge w/ great enthusiasm and our table captain greated us by our last name. The service team made us feel extremely special even though we weren't seated in Booth 1. The concierge even went out of her way to repair my wife's shoe strap which broke when she exited the cab. The food was first rate and we sent our compliments to the chef. Although pricey, the whole experience was well worth it. Overall a wonderful dining experience.

2
★★★★★

We celebrated my wife's 40th birthday. We were welcomed by the concierge w/ great enthusiasm and our table captain greated us by our last name. The service team made us feel extremely special even though we weren't seated in Booth 1. The concierge even went out of her way to repair my wife's shoe strap which broke when she exited the cab. The food was first rate and we sent our compliments to the chef. Although pricey, the whole experience was well worth it. Overall a wonderful dining experience.

Pros: service, wine list

Cons: pricey

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The Pump Room, classy? elegant? or just plain old arrogant. For the price that was paid, and for the 3 hours of my life i won't get back, i expected better service. Once seated, my family and i had to wait around for 15-20 minutes before someone even came to our table. We also expected bread, common to even the smallest restaurants; but upon asking the bustboy for it, we were in for a real treat finding ways to make use of our unedible, cold, stale roles. After complaining, we were only showered with more hard bread and finally gave up. Don't get me wrong the food was fantastic, except for our fruit cake desert that was hard as rock. signing out: thanks for a lovely christmas dinner!

0
★☆☆☆☆

The Pump Room, classy? elegant? or just plain old arrogant. For the price that was paid, and for the 3 hours of my life i won't get back, i expected better service. Once seated, my family and i had to wait around for 15-20 minutes before someone even came to our table. We also expected bread, common to even the smallest restaurants; but upon asking the bustboy for it, we were in for a real treat finding ways to make use of our unedible, cold, stale roles. After complaining, we were only showered with more hard bread and finally gave up. Don't get me wrong the food was fantastic, except for our fruit cake desert that was hard as rock. signing out: thanks for a lovely christmas dinner!

Pros: food

Cons: $18 valet parking, deplorable service

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Nightmarish!!!! My husband, sister and I were dinning there on Christmas night. No thanks to the recent ratings, we gave 3 precious Christmas hours and $350 away to these money mongers. Had I known, the money would go to the shelter rather than these $$$ Rippers. The 3 days old dinner rolls were used to make noise to get the waiter's attention for service. Service, interior decor and just about everything in the Pump are horribly outdated. Overly stuffed and ridiculously pretentious. Please! Please! Dont make the same mistake that we did. There are much, much better restaurants worth experimenting than this place.

0
★☆☆☆☆

Nightmarish!!!! My husband, sister and I were dinning there on Christmas night. No thanks to the recent ratings, we gave 3 precious Christmas hours and $350 away to these money mongers. Had I known, the money would go to the shelter rather than these $$$ Rippers. The 3 days old dinner rolls were used to make noise to get the waiter's attention for service. Service, interior decor and just about everything in the Pump are horribly outdated. Overly stuffed and ridiculously pretentious. Please! Please! Dont make the same mistake that we did. There are much, much better restaurants worth experimenting than this place.

Pros: Main course

Cons: Service, decor

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My husband and I had reservations at the Pump Room for Thanksgiving this year, we might be a little partial, as our son is one of the culinary team,but we were both extremely impressed with the atmosphere,the ombience and the food. The pricing was alittle overboard, making it a special treat and not an average everyday dining experience. We had a remarkable day. Thanks to everyone who was involved.

2
★★★★★

My husband and I had reservations at the Pump Room for Thanksgiving this year, we might be a little partial, as our son is one of the culinary team,but we were both extremely impressed with the atmosphere,the ombience and the food. The pricing was alittle overboard, making it a special treat and not an average everyday dining experience. We had a remarkable day. Thanks to everyone who was involved.

Pros: beautiful decor, great service

Cons: expensive

Editorial from

The Scene
The Pump Room's famous photo foyer sets a tone of pomp and nostalgia with a who's who of framed celebrity pics, most from the '80s and before. The clubby piano bar leads into a stately dining room decked in crystal…

 

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