The design is inspired by Villa Nellcôte, the French chateau where the Rolling Stones recorded “Exile on Main Street” in the 1970s. Between recording sessions (and bouts of debauchery), the band and their famous friends would gather over hours-long meals prepared by a chef who sourced each day’s ingredients from the local markets.
Like its namesake chateau, Nellcôte is opulent and approachable, a neighborhood restaurant wrapped in high-energy elegance. It’s where friends convene over food and drinks prepared with fresh, seasonal, house-made ingredients — including hand-milled flour — in a setting that feels special. All accompanied by a killer background soundtrack.
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I went for the pizza on a recommendation and agree that the crust is terrific. Good and chewy with quality toppings. The pasta is also pretty good (caccio e pepe, simple, not quite peppery enough). The space is too big and the bathroom felt half-finished. Most perplexing? The soundtrack. Jack Johnson from Curious George soundtrack? Smashmouth? It was such a 00s hodgepodge that I wouldn’t even call it ironic. It felt like someone left their iPod nano on shuffle. Not what I wanted for Saturday night.
Worst experience from a restaurant with really high ratings. Went here for a birthday dinner - it honestly had the ambience of a late-night bar. Songs ranged from Country Road to Spice Girls If You Wanna Be My Lover. I love these songs at a late night bar after a few cocktails - not at 8pm with a nice dinner in West Loop. It was also SO LOUD and they barely turned it down when we asked. We also had a broken table that the waiter could care less about helping us fix. It was honestly ridiculous. They also were out of EVERYTHING. We asked for the calamari and a popular cocktail - completely out of them. I asked for an extra olive in my martini (I only got one which isn't a big deal I just wanted another one) and he told me that they had a policy to only give out one olive but he would "make an exception". So if you want to eat a plate of pasta while listening to Third Eye Blind blaring in your ears, not get any of the normal items on the menu, and have an olive policy enforced, Nellcote is the place for you!
The food was good - only upside to an otherwise terrible dinner with the worst ambience and service.
It was tasty but the music was way too loud to have a conversation. I'd expect that on a Friday but this was a Wednesday and there were only 8 tables being used in the whole restaurant. No need for that high of volume. It was uncomfortable.
The restaurant was closed, even though we had a reservation with OpenTable. Not sure how this happened. I've been here previously, though and the food/service was great!
Cool space, a bit dead for a Friday night, service was ok, food wasn't anything amazing - but good.
The food was terrible & the service even worse. They were out of the 3 beers we requested as well as one of their signature cocktails (how can you be out of a signature cocktail?). During dinner, twice I requested something from the server and twice she failed to bring it. As for the food it was terrible, the appetizer was tasteless and entrée was inedible.
The food was pretty good. Our waitress was ok, super pleasant, just slow to serve. The bartenders were terrible. Served two consecutive glasses of flat prosecco, but swore it was still bubbly (the bottle was foaming as if they just shook it, prosecco doesn’t normally have a head. The atmosphere appeared really swanky, and then they had a roll of bounty paper towels just sitting on the counter in the ladies room and they were out of soap in the men’s room. The music was well chosen for the atmosphere but continuously got cranked up to the point where conversation was really too hard (and just as a reference, we are 40 and enjoy a lively scene, not 70 and complaining about the “kids” having too much fun!). While the food was tasty, we won’t be back unfortunately. Cost wise, I was surprised. About $300 for drinks and dinner for 6!
Wouldn’t seat us until our whole party of there was there, place was empty.
Insanely poor management and customer service
Amazing food! Went there for a date and we were shocked by how good the food was!
Great evening with friends and family. Food was excellent. Atmosphere terrific. Manager PC and staff were attentive and responsive. Will definitely go back.
Probably would never go back to Nellcote. Dogs in a restaurant are ok at outdoor cafes in Paris and Amsterdam but when I take clients to dinner to a restaurant which I think is a little upscale (have always thought of West Randolph as trendy, upscale restaurants), I don’t want a lady walking in with a dog in a baby carrier and sitting down in a restaurant where I am trying to entertain clients. Really ruined the dinner for all.
Was the Monday after Thanksgiving and a day after a snow storm so the restaurant was empty. Food was great as was the service.
Wonderful service. Enjoyed our meal. Solid!
Everything was just okay. Okay food, service, atmosphere. Prices were good, drinks a little overpriced for the quality. Glad we came once but probably won’t be back.
I read a lot of bad reviews about this restaurant but decided to give it a try anyway since it's in my neighborhood. Sadly, the reviews were true. Food came out cold, every dish did. And it was pasta... Service was bad. There was practically no one there which explains it. I spend almost $200 on cold, average food with bad service. I wish we went to one of the many amazing Italian places in Chicago.
Our food and drinks were delicious, however the service was not good. Our server forgot to put in some of our order, so we didn’t get any of the veggies we wanted. He didn’t come to check on us until we were basically done with our meal, so we didn’t want to want for them at that point.
Great food. Reasonable prices. Staff were very attentive and pasta was traditional and excellent.
Our waitress was terrible could not gave ever been trained in her life. I’ll never go back.
It's a fun place with a cool, trendy atmosphere. Our waitress was great and the salmon dish was excellent!
We celebrated a birthday and our server was so much fun! He really made it an enjoyable dinner for us and took great care of all of our needs. The ambiance of this place is great and I would go back for that alone when celebrating something with friends. The food was good but not over the top amazing - however we felt that it was priced appropriately and was a good value.
Food wasn’t properly distributed—everything came out at once. Server was either too busy or inattentive. Food was good.
Our friend had her wallet stolen at the restaurant and the management was not helpful. We got mixed stories that were or were not cameras. The hostess upon arrival was not pleasant and for a reservation we had to wait 15 minutes before our table was ready. No apology was given for the delay. Overall the staff was not welcoming or helpful.
Great night but it was WAY too loud for dinner and they were playing 80s music all night which was strange to be blasting at a restaurant during dinner.
Atmosphere caught somewhere between a club and a restaurant. Average food and cocktails.
It was our first time here, and I told the server it’s my sisters 30th. She was very cold, dismissive and seemed like she was constantly in a rush. As soon as we told her we don’t drink alcohol it was almost like she lost interest in serving us.
We were seated promptly around our reservation time. The ambience was trendy and modern. But Service was very slow for a Saturday night. I would expect more promptness when coming to refilling our water and basically checking if we needed anything. No complains with the food. I had the salmon which was really well done. Service needs to improve.
The management staff completely overwhelmed our waitress. Not her fault! Great food!
The food was not very good, expensive, and it was really hard to find a server to order food or after the food came
This place has good food, but slow service. Be prepared to wait in between drinks and courses. Definitely not a place you're in and out of, but great if you're looking for a leisurely dinner with friends to share food.
The food wasn’t very good, specifically the chicken and the lobster pasta. The brussel sprouts were cooked really well and very flavorful. The waitress said they were short staffed, but even so the service was extremely bad. We had to ask the hostess to even get the waitress come over. We didn’t even get water for the first 15 minutes. My friend and I ordered wine so they never gave us water, even after our wine was long gone.
They ran out of two wines as well as wine glasses! Service was bad as they were understaffed. Overrated place.
We waited for 30-40 minutes for a table despite having a reservation. We were offered a lounge seat for dinner, which I turned down in favor of continuing to wait for a table. The server was enthusiastic and upbeat despite a noticeable stressful environment, and was knowledgeable and apologetic. We waited 45 minutes for our food. Dining here would probably have been a better experience on a less crowded weekday.
Worst service I’ve had in a really long time. Inexcusably bad. Food was only OK. Literally scores of great places to eat within 2-3 blocks, so I don’t see this place lasting much longer in that competitive of an area.
We first went to Nellcote about one year ago, at which time the food and service was fantastic. This time the experience was quite the opposite. We were seated directly behind the host table and could hear the conversations of every new guest that entered the restaurant. We first tried ordering drinks, but were told several minutes after that they were out and needed to order something else, so we did and waited another 15 minutes before our drinks arrived. The waitress then proceeded to take our orders for a starter and entrees at the same time, however, after my fiance ordered her entree the waitress began to walk away without taking mine. After this incident, the waitress ignored us for the most of the night. The starter and entree both arrived at the same time about 45 minutes later. It was not until we asked for the check that our waitress stopped by our table. Overall, the food was ok, the service was terrible, and it is unlikely that we will return.
service was poor, salad came no dressing, no water came til the end and no refilled, staff running around and in street clothes, would never go back.
Food was good. The bartender needs a raise since he had to be the hostess, waiter and make drinks behind the bar. They were sadly understaffed simply because they knew how dead their establishment would be on Wednesday.
We went for an early dinner with another couple before a concert. Beautiful restaurant inside, sat near the open patio doors, perfect. We shared several apps, pizza, pasta, all very delicious especially the Brussels sprouts and bolognese pasta. Bravo!
One of our favorites, it was so sad to see how empty it was on a Saturday night at 8:00. The food and cocktails were fantastic and we appreciated our interesting seating arrangement on a low couch at a coffee table. We had so much fun, but I remember when we had to plan weeks in advance to get a seat. I guess that's just the nature of the restaurant business. We will definitely be going more often while it's still there.