Moto shut down without notifying guests with active reservations. A disgrace.
After having secured a reservation on the advice of my girlfriend's son and his girlfriend, we found out the the restaurant was being sold and that it would be the last dinner service. Quite frankly we were hesitant because we weren't sure if the restaurant would be up to its high standards. The experienced far surpassed all our expectations. Everything was exceptional and the fact that many of Moto's old staff came back for the last night spoke volumes. I am so very glad that my girlfriend and I had a chance to experience Moto's before it closed its doors. After finishing our meal we were even given a tour of the kitchen and got to meet the executive chef. Kudos to an awesome restaurant and an exceptional wait staff!
This used to be our favorite restaurant. Unfortately, with only days left before they closed, I fear the strong staff were gone. Food was eh, service was blah, wine pours that should have been 2-3 ounces came out as sips.
Nothing memorable from a once dazzling restaurant. Shame that my last memory will be quickly forgotten.
I had very high expectations but left disappointed. We were initially seated in a minimally decorated windowless small room downstairs that had 4-5 tables and extra kitchen equipment along the walls. We asked to be reseated upstairs and were (after an hour) but the service upstairs was not great. Wine stewards walked away when we tried to ask questions, minimal description of dishes was offered and staff seemed mildly annoyed by our presence. To have a successful dining experience in a restaurant of this level, the service needs to be as great as the food. Ironically, the staff in the downstairs room (during our hour wait) was much friendlier and more attentive then the upstairs crew. The food was quite good but I left feeling disappointed.
It's breaking my heart that I finally got myself to moto, only when it's going to be closing soon. I will eagerly look forward to Chef Anderson's next endeavor. This is the first meal I've ever had that evoked both my mom's cooking and also what I imaging dinner on the moon might be like.
I'm so sad as I write this review. This restaurant was a trailblazer a dozen years ago and has always been one of the best dining experiences in the universe. And now they're serving their final meal in 9 days. To add insult to injury, the moto family (and they were a family) is being taken over by the insufferable Alinea group (who seriously think Michelin should increase the number of stars available just for them!) So if you haven't been to .moto, RUN immediately.
Thank you, moto, for expanding my culinary world, making memories with people I care about, supporting countless charities, and the best thing I ever ate ... Donut Soup.
paid $700.00 for two, 16 course with wine paring. 8 of the 16 courses not good (especially the waffles). the wine paring was $95 per person, we sat for 45 minutes with out wine at the end of our meal. no one asked if we even wanted to pay for a glass! When asked how things were i said the waffles were not great and several people came by and commented on the fact i said that. Charlie Trotters this is not!
It is clear that they are closing the restaurant in two weeks and that the executive chef is no longer there. Sadly he killed himself last year and it must be hard to continue his vision of excellence without him. I dined at Moto several years ago and it was an incredible experience. But this last visit felt like they were just going through the motions. I guess it's understandable, but I would have wished that these last weeks would be an excellent celebration of his memory not a hollow echo of better times. Moto was an excellent restaurant offering a unique experience envisioned by a brilliant man. That is how it should be remembered.
We chose Moto because of his very good reviews for our NYE getaway. Minimalist decor, impeccable service, surprisingly very good multicultural dishes with an exotic touch. This restaurant deserves more than one star Michelin. We choose the 16 courses and from the beginning to the end, it was an amazing experience. Chapeau!
Now its just overpriced and trying too hard. Service took forever (intentionally make you wait), and the dishes weren't very inventive. There is a reason nobody is talking about this place anymore...
Chefs put a great deal of thought and focus on the food. I recognize and respect their efforts. However, there were several misses for me throughout the 18 courses. At this level of play and at the $200+ price point, there should be no misses.
The decor of the restaurant is off-putting. The ambiance needs quite a bit work. The lighting was poor, the tables and restaurant is stark and appealing with an unpleasant music selection. There were bottles of wine in coolers carelessly placed that were open in front of guests.
The food is legit just a tasting so it would be wise to eat a sandwich beforehand. The courses were common and not inventive. I would not recommend spending your money here. There are much better options in Chicago.
The food was great...the servers were friendly...the place was nice...
-The wait between courses took WAY too long. The lull between them was nap worthy.
-There was not a menu listing with descriptions of the courses...the server gave you a verbal detailed rundown - but we were often biting into things and not remembering which was what that the server said... so alot of the meal was a guessing game of flavors....
Excellent tasting menu, innovative food. Excellent wine pairing. Great way to celebrate a special occasion.
The food was great, as it should be at that price point. The service was excellent, as it should be at that price point. The food was unimaginative though, and just as good as a number of restaurants would be in the $50-75/plate price point. I didn't come just for good food, I came for an imaginative take on food, and for the "deconstruction" aspect that they like to tout. I had great food that was presented in the same way as it would be at almost any other higher end restaurant. I just happened to pay 3-5x more than I would at other restaurants. At this price point, it can't just be good, it has to knock your socks off, and it definitely didn't do that.
Chef Anderson provided an amazing meal. Definitely the highlight of our 3 day trip to Chicago. It's definitely not as focused on the molecular gastronomy as Moto was in the past, but the food is still creative and delicious. Loved the chicken and dumplings dish.
I had been reading about Moto for weeks leading up to our visit, and I must say that it met expectations, even exceeded them. We were given a tour of the kitchen and herb garden after our dinner, and we were even given two pieces of delicious cake that we took back to hotel. One last thing--on a lot of tasting menus, it seems like dessert is an afterthought, but not at Moto. The 2 dessert courses we had, plus the extra cake, were some of the best I've had on a tasting menu. The pastry chef is GOOD.
Thanks again to Moto for an awesome experience. Well worth the money, and we'll be back next time we're in Chicago!
This restaurant is apart from all the rest. I truly felt that I experienced reinvented food with a hint of nostalgia. The texture, the color, the shape and many aspects of the food was truly innovative. That was coupled with a hint of a taste of home. The preparation of the food and the presentation of the food was very intentional. This was truly a wonderful experience. Hats of to the chef!
We have been treating ourselves to Moto for years. It was always an amazing experience as far as delicious food, outstanding service and of course the crazy menu items artistically created by Chef Omar. Chef Omar is no longer there and we were very disappointed. The food was delicious but the experience was not what it had been like before. I was also surprised that the prices did not go down as the show quality did...it was just a regular experience with good food....not the show or gastro shock of when Chef Omar was there. We will most likely not be going back. Such a shame about the former Chef...he was a genius.
I took my boyfriend here for his birthday and we had the 9 course tasting menu which was excellent. Chef Anderson gave us a tour of the kitchen which was great fun. Would come again!
Let me start with the good. The staff did a great job.
The food left you feeling as if they were overeaching to deliver an eclectic product with no regard for taste.
The wine left you doubting if they really have a somolier. Pairings were poorly executed, lacked balance (12 wines with only two reds) and consisted of primarily desert wines even during the main course!
Price: Dinner for 2 ordering the prefix food and wine with 20% tip cost $1000, not the most expensive restaurant I have eaten at but the only time I have experienced buyers remorse for days after and felt as if I had totally wasted an opportunity to enjoy a good meal in Chicago.
Tried the nine-course tasting menu with a friend, and was very impressed by the presentation of each dish. The staff even gave us a tour of the kitchen afterwards!
Outrageous prices for terrible food!
A 20 percent service charge was added.
Would never recommend. Would never go back. There is a reason there was only 3 couples in the restaurant on a Friday night!
A must for any foodie! Sublime service accompanied by stellar food to say the very least! Perfection!
I saw a documentary on the story behind Moto about 4 years ago and resolved to eat here someday. This was a dining experience that exceeded my expectations and was well-worth the wait. The service was top-notch with no detail overlooked, the staff was very knowledgeable and welcoming, the food was one explosion of flavor/texture after another, and the wine was paired perfectly. I requested pictures with the staff and chef and was offered a tour of the kitchen. I savored every morsel and every minute of the experience, and I am so grateful that I indulged - I would highly recommend this place to all of my foodie friends. This was the highlight of my Chicago vacation!!
This was my fifth trip to Moto, but first with Chef Chris Anderson running the show. While his menu (we did the 8-course menu) was less whimsical than past menus, the food was exquisite. The quality of the courses and blend of flavors was unlike anything we had had in past dinners. The restaurant is in excellent hands, and I'm looking forward to my next trip back.
5th visit. First with new chef. Food quality remains excellent, but the fun is missing now.
Wonderful 18-course meal - service was perfect and the beautiful and delicious courses were inspired, accessible, unique and creative. The kitchen and front-of-the house teams treated us like royalty (we are not). The pride in the quality of product, beauty of presentation and client service made this such a special night. I am sure this is a challenging time for the team at Moto, but the only thing that showed was their passion and commitment to a long future!
We were immediately intrigued by the " edible menu", a miniature sampling of all that was to come. This idea visually set the tone for the rest of dinner. Dinner was fun and very tasty
Probably one of the absolute worst tasting dinners which I have ever had in Chicago over the past ten plus years! Do NOT be fooled by their concept, the culinary execution is absolutely not there and the incessant turnover with their staff, both with kitchen and front of house, points to larger issues and problems with ownership! I thought their wine/beverage list was perhaps the poorest and most limited selection wise that I have ever seen for an ultra-fine dining restaurant in their category. It was also egregiously overpriced with comically small pours by the glass evocative of gouging! Expect to be charged $35 to $40 dollars for about a third of a glass of wine pour and then charged almost another 33% in service charge fees and taxes on top of that! Moreover, I seriously question whether this business can continue to survive based upon the work I sampled from their current chef which was just abysmal. If that is presented in a blind tasting alongside the work now at 42 grams, goosefoot, schwa and boka the public feedback would be overwhelmingly shaming and condemning for Moto! I'm sure that they have had better chefs in the past and perhaps Homaro Cantu will once again put back on his apron and reclaim control over his kitchen, but I would not personally have the confidence nor could I ever recommend to anyone else of dining there again on the work of Richard Farina. You would be far better served now going to Elizabeth or even Tru (which I do not personally like). This is a semi-tragedy because I was a huge fan and regular customer of Otom, I even greatly enjoyed Ing and thought that their cuisine was absolutely stellar and overall excellent! On the positive side, the front of house staff was very polite, polished and helpful in their service on my visit which I truly appreciated, and I also enjoyed the ambiance which I found both chic and elegant. However, you could also dine at Grace now for these prices(within 90% of the cost there).
Moro is the place to go if you wanted to try food from the world of Molecular Gastronomy, but we're found most restaurants in this genre too pricey. The 8 course tasting menu with wine pairing followed by a barrel aged coffee prepared table side in the Japanese siphon is an outstanding value when compared to other top restaurants in this class. It is literally half the price which for most urban professionals and foodies is within reach. You receive a personal menu with your name engraved on it as a reminder of the delights prepared for you by Chef Richard Farina that evening. My wife and I had a wonderful time and highly recommend Moto.
An amazing experience with wonderful food. Each dish in the 16 course tasting menu was better than the next.
We will be back and have been telling friends it's a place they must dine at.
Presentation was great and it was fun to try some new foods (goat and salsify). However, they seem to have sacrificed flavor for dramatic presentation. For the price tag, I would expect better tasting food. I would also expect to not still feel hungry when I leave. We only did the 8 course menu but for $165 after tax and tip I want to feel like I ate. They did a great job altering the menu for my friend who is a pescatarian while still giving me the regular menu.
Interesting and delicious food knowledgeable staff and attentive service. Given kitchen tour which was immaculate with expert and passionate chefs.
Allow 3 hours and bring lots of $ for a unique dining event.
Embodied class and excellence. Every dish had unique flavors from other dishes on the tasting menu. The fresh herbs brought a fragrance rarely seen at other restaurants. We saw the growing room and can attest they are as fresh as they come. The presentation of each dish demonstrated original thinking and brought us to the theme of the dish. Things like ocean, forrest and fire were expressed in each dish. Better than L2O, Grace, sixteen and Tru (what isn't). A close second to Alinea from our experience. A must stop for the Chicago epicure.
Wow! This 4 hour dinner counts as your "dinner and a show". The service was excellent and entertaining in itself! They bring out a different course about every 20 minutes. It was so fun to see what the next course would be and what creative way it would be presented! The ambiance made for a great opportunity to visit with family and friends. Very pricey though--dinner for four was $1,500, but it was a unique, once in a lifetime experience!
Moto has been one of my favorite restaurants the past couple of years and my amazing meal this past weekend only enhanced my feelings. This is really a special venue for a leisurely, whimsical and memorable meal. Every time we come it seems as though Chefs Farina & Crenshaw somehow manage to become even more talented. Course after course was beautifully presented, creative and (most importantly) absolutely delicious. The wild boar with mole is definitely one of the best things I have consumed in 2014. The wine pairings were fantastic as well. The front of the house staff underwent significant changes last year, but now has been together a while and is such a warm, friendly group of people; the service definitely elevates the dining experience. There is no doubt that Moto has evolved into one of the top few restaurants in Chicago.
The last comparable exquisite dining experience was Tru. Moto measured up and perhaps took a little nudge ahead with the wonderful, non-intimidating, knowledgable, attentive staff. We definitely had a few favorites amidst the 16 courses, but loved each for the presentation, explosion and layers of flavors, and unique pairings. Put this one on your dining bucket list and request a kitchen tour after.
amazing food, wine and service.
All senses satiated
To begin with, the service was truly outstanding. All of the employees seem to actually enjoy their jobs.
The food was just something you need to experience. Completely original. I think the 'which came first' dish was my favorite. Followed by the wild boar. The initial tasting of the tasting was fun and I enjoyed that they have you a your of the kitchen afterword.
I initially thought this was probably a one time experience, but I expect I will be back.