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  • Market House on the Square

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Market House on the Square
Market House on the Square

Market House on the Square Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.themarkethouse.com
  • Phone: (847) 234-8800
  • Hours of Operation: Open at 11:30am Mon-Sat, 11:00am Sundays
    Close at 9pm Mon-Thu,10pm Fri & Sat, 8pm on Sundays
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Contemporary American
  • Executive Chef: Michael Tsonton
  • Dress Code: Smart Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Fireplace, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Takeout, View, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Private Party Facilities: In the heart of downtown Lake Forest, overlooking historic Market Square,
    The Market House offers three private dining rooms which can accommodate groups from 8 - 10 to as large as 70. We provide the perfect ambiance for your next event, business or social, informal or elegant.
  • Private Party Contact: Abby Schaubel (847) 644-8872

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Deerpath
  • Public Transit: Lake Forest Metra
  • Parking: Public Lot
  • Parking Details: Parking is available across the street from the restaurant.
A word from Market House on the Square
Market House on the Square is a concept built on a few simple concepts. Chef Tsonton uses fresh, local ingredients to create a unique take on familiar food that we grew up with and a fresh look at dishes we have come to crave as adults. Chef infuses a lighter touch to classics such as Meatloaf, Crab Cakes and Pot Roast, while bringing a healthier and fresher approach to very popular dishes like Risotto, Salmon and the very unique “Burger, No Bun."

This emphasis on local, fresh, familiar products also extends to the bar where great Local Craft Beer favorites include Half Acre, Tighthead Blonde Ale from Mundelein and Inspiration Pale Ale from up the street in Lake Bluff. These are the centerpiece to a beverage menu that includes classic cocktails with North Shore Vodka and Gin and a robust wine list featuring 20 selections by the quartino.
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Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerGreat for Lunch
  • Diners' Choice WinnerOutdoor Dining
Diner Reviews
  • "We visit the Market House often when we are in Lake Forest, but this may well be our last. Our waiter was unresponsive, dismissive, and focused entirely on two elderly couples who were running up a large bar tab. It took 10 minutes for anyone to come to our table and then it was the host who brought water. The waiter told us the kitchen was having an off night, but when our food arrived, it was fine. However, from the time our food arrived...via an expediter, not a waiter...he repeatedly walked past our table to attend the table of elderly, loud drunks. He visited with them a great deal...we were close enough to hear many unneeded aspects of their life...all the while he avoided our table. A sloppy waiter can ruin everything..and did."
    Dined on 8/24/2014
  • "Outside dining was delightful. We all enjoyed our meals."
    Dined on 8/22/2014
  • "Market House provided good service, a good menu selection and delicious food. Sitting outside in the summertime with the setting the restaurant can provide, is a nice way to spend an evening in Lake Forest."
    Dined on 8/16/2014
  • "We keep trying to give this place another chance, but always leave underwhelmed and disappointed. We have had good luck when ordering sandwiches and burgers, but the entrees are pretty bad. Two of us ordered the walleye this time. The $29 entree was skimpy and actually looked like an appetizer. There was no flavor at all and it was dry. They don't have salt and pepper on the tables which we badly needed for the fish and the vegetables. The other two in our party had the Delmonico steak which had little flavor. It wasn't seasoned or seared. Maybe it was just broiled. Our server was excellent and the patio cannot be beat. It's best just to accept that they can do sandwiches and burgers pretty well, and skip their entrees."
    Dined on 8/15/2014
  • "This is a great spot to eat both indoors and out, with a little on the menu for everyone. Super friendly service, lots of seasonal food options, always enjoyable."
    Dined on 8/15/2014
  • "I've dined here a few times and it is always just a great experience. The servers and food never disappoint! The patio is great to sit on when weather permits as well."
    Dined on 8/13/2014
  • "On one of those rare perfect Midwest weather days or slightly less than perfect, where do you go in Lake Forest for an outdoor dining experience? I strongly recommend Market House. The outside seating is spacious but not cavernous and yet intimate. With an attentive staff and excellent wine list, it is a winner. In addition, the brunch selection are both inventive and familar with pork belly to seafood on the menu. Hurry while the weather is cooperative. It is "Cheers" for the Northshore crowd!"
    Dined on 8/10/2014
  • "We celebrated our 40th wedding anniversary at Market House. The host and wait staff were excellent and gave us special attention on our special day. The trout was the best we have had!"
    Dined on 8/9/2014
  • "A very enjoyable experience. Food was very good and the service conscientious and responsive. I enjoyed pepper steak and my companions had fish. Salad was very fresh and contained interesting variety. Desert offering was creative."
    Dined on 8/9/2014
  • "We were first time diners, although it had come highly recommended. We were happy. The outdoor patio was great, the food was very tasty and the service was excellent. I would certainly go back and recommend it to others."
    Dined on 8/8/2014
  • "Market House is a go-to favorite on a beautiful summer evening. Patio can't be beat and you'll certainly see familiar faces if from LF/LB."
    Dined on 8/6/2014
  • "The setting of the restaurant is so charming in downtown Lake Forest. the outdoor area makes you feel like your in Europe. Had the original salad with Shrimp which was delicious. Would definitely eat there again."
    Dined on 8/6/2014
  • "We loved our evening at Market House on the patio. I had the tuna tartare to start and the white fish. Both were fresh and presented beautifully. Service was good and the place had such a great vibe and energy. Also, great wine list and reasonably priced."
    Dined on 8/4/2014
  • "My food order was wrong, when I sent it back, it returned to the table after all the my dining guests had finished their dinners. The fish was uncooked and the side order was never replaced. My order should had been removed from the check. My food was packed up and throw into the garbage at home. The waiter was a very nice guy."
    Dined on 8/2/2014
  • "Mussels were tough with many shells empty. Appeared to be very overcooked or cooked earlier. Pike was underdone. Had to ask for rolls. I think this is probably a good place for sandwiches and other bar food only."
    Dined on 8/2/2014
  • "We went to MH for lunch and the salads were very good but somewhat skimpy and expensive. The sandwiches are the best bet at lunch. The burgers were excellent and the Van Doren club was very good. We sat inside but should have sat outdoors. We were placed at a table way in the back of a room with no other diners."
    Dined on 7/29/2014
  • "We had dinner out on the patio on an evening when LF was offering one of their Concerts on the Square. What a great experience! The food was fantastic, and even though the service was a little slow, we didn't mind because we were enjoying the outdoor ambiance and music. All in all, we loved it!"
    Dined on 7/24/2014
  • "Service: excellent. Seating: we asked for a quiet booth where we could converse easily and we got it, though it had a wasp in residence. Appetizer: big enough for four, but nothing unusual. Wine list: Reasonably complete and priced. l Main course: Mahi mahi was overdone and much too firm. Green sauce did not help. Snap peas were overcooked and tough. Dessert: a below average combination plate of pasteries unattractiavely presented. In total, a place where we could converse easily with mediocre food."
    Dined on 7/20/2014
  • "We highly recommend the Market House. The outdoor dining is beautiful. It is on the expensive side, but its worth it for a special occasion. The service is good, but a bit on the snobby side."
    Dined on 7/20/2014
  • "Entree size salads for our Sunday lunch were wonderfully fresh with a nice combination of not too ordinary ingredients. The service was outstanding, they have more than one staff member per table making sure beverages are filled and dishes cleared in a timely manner. We will need to consider their small choice of brunch items next time as they orders received by the table of four next to us looked yummy."
    Dined on 7/20/2014
  • "This was our first time at the restaurant since it changed management. While the patio was lovely and our table was relatively quiet, the service and food were mediocre. We will not be going back."
    Dined on 7/18/2014
  • "Open and airy, elegantly casual. We greatly enjoyed the tuna tartare appetizer with melon and fresh roasted corn. It was to die for!! The baby back ribs were bursting with flavor and so tender. Wonderful, attentive service made our visit very enjoyable. You will not be disappointed in service or the quality of the food."
    Dined on 7/12/2014
  • "We thought that the food was average, even though it sounded better than that on the menu. And it was pricey for what we got. Not so sure that we will hurry back - there are better options"
    Dined on 7/2/2014
  • "Have been here a few times since the name change, and while everything sounds good on the menu, I find very little flavor... until the last time that I went. The menu had changed a bit and the food was much better than it has been in my previous visits. I will definitely be back soon."
    Dined on 6/29/2014
  • "Nice atmosphere, conversation friendly, great outdoor space."
    Dined on 6/26/2014
  • "Met a business contact for lunch. Good food, reasonably priced and cheery. We enjoyed it. The lunch crowd picked up, and it became a little loud. If we had been sitting across from each other, it might have been a problem, but we were at a four-square sitting next to each other and it was fine."
    Dined on 6/23/2014
  • "At Sunday lunch no inside seating offered. Long wait. Pricey and ordinary food. Very nice waiter made experience nice but management definitely sub par."
    Dined on 6/22/2014
  • "Beans were undercooked and fish skimpy on sandwich which occurs often. Inside room needs fabric of some sort since it is too loud when a few tables full even"
    Dined on 6/19/2014
  • "My family went to Market House to have brunch on Father's Day. We had a great time, the food was delicious, the service was outstanding, the outdoor dining was lovely. I kept asking, "Why haven't we come here before?" I'm definitely looking forward to going there again."
    Dined on 6/15/2014
  • "Market House is the one of the best restaurants on the North Shore. Food is outstanding. The staff is friendly and knowledgeable and the managers are terrific. We mentioned we were celebrating our anniversary and they sent over two glasses of sparkling wine on the house. They have great appetizers, salads, pastas, fish and deserts...and a solid beer and wine list. This is one of our favorites"
    Dined on 6/14/2014
  • "Excellent service with great ambiance - we go regularly but the outdoor patio is especially delightful in summer."
    Dined on 6/14/2014
  • "We consistently get great food, which is the only reason we keep coming back. The service has always been hit-or-miss. This time it was a miss. Waited 15 minutes for waiter to show up to order drinks. Reviewed menu, and found we had two different versions. The item I wanted was on the "wrong" menu when I was ready to order. Got new menus, cue up another 10 minute wait while we reviewed menu again. Flagged down waiter and ordered. And wait. Food arrived, absent one of the sides. Got it straightened out and got side in about 5 minutes. Food was very good: Fish Tacos, Broiled Whitefish, and asparagus side. Finished dinner and ready to go. And wait again to catch waiters eye so we could pay and leave. Taking a break from this one."
    Dined on 6/13/2014
  • "Since hiring a new chef the menu has changed drastically. I ordered the spinach salad the other day and the dressing was so acidic I found myself making lemon faces at my friends."
    Dined on 6/13/2014
  • "And when something goes wrong, they fix it or make it up to you!"
    Dined on 6/11/2014
  • "This place has never disappoint me when we visit. The two downside this time was the tuna tartar and steaks that we ordered. The tuna needed a bit more salt in it; our server did not check us out when we needed for extra salt. There was no salt and/or pepper on the table. The steaks which both of us ordered were well too done for what we requested: medium rare. The server was professional, and returned back with the replaced steaks relatively quickly, so we did not feel we were kept waiting. However, it would have been better if they could serve right the first time. Despite all, we still love the place. Considering the location, the patrons are upscale people, and we enjoyed being in the crowd."
    Dined on 6/9/2014
  • "We'd been the Market House several times and enjoyed it, especially when dining outside. We were inside this time, but that wasn't the problem. Apparently, they've changed chefs - or so we heard. The food was disappointing - smaller portions, unimaginative, higher costs, less selection. The wait staff, while trying hard, was inexperienced. Bread/rolls were stale. Until the quality improves, we'll pass for now."
    Dined on 6/7/2014
  • "We had the Rehearsal Dinner for our son's wedding at a private room at Market House. Everything turned out great from planning, tasting through event. Have eaten there many times and we always have an awesome experience."
    Dined on 5/30/2014
  • "The flatbread was awful! Tasted like bad passover pizza on matzo. Don't order it. The crust was chewy and it was tasteless. The tomato/basil soup was yummy and the dinner salads looked awesome. I enjoyed my shrimp and linguine but the other's in my party did not enjoy their dinners (whitefish and salmon). My husband said the mahi was just ok. Dessert was the brownie, which was dry, and the butter cake. The butter cake was good but the portion was very small. Overall, would not go back."
    Dined on 5/24/2014
  • "Market House continues to be my favorite "go-to" restaurant. Great variety on the menu and no one in the area does fish as fresh or perfectly prepared as they do. It is such a a comfortable place, and while every meal I have had there is not 5 star, the food is consistently good and the service, is well, really outstanding. A real nice bunch of kids, and people are really made to feel welcome. What more could you ask for in a world of snarly customer service? "
    Dined on 5/23/2014
  • "This has been our "go to" place for summer dining on the North Shore. The past two recent experiences have not been up to their usual standards. This last time the chicken salad had dried out chicken cubes that were hard and tasteless. Where was the nice fresh chicken? The trout was also wanting. Not much flavor and also not up to previous standards. Something has changed. We hesitate to recommend or suggest a visit. If you want ambiance in out door dining it still is tops. "
    Dined on 5/21/2014