by Cheryl Morgan
December 2, 2000
I'm not sure whether Stetson's is used to having royalty as guests, but it is certainly used to the Chicago version thereof. One of the first things that you notice when you go in is a rack of steak knives, each of them bearing an engraved plate on the handle. These knives belong to regular honored guests. There is even one for Da Mayor, Mr. Daley himself. Important people dine at Stetsons, because it is good.
Unfortunately we were not that hungry when we arrived. It was a spur of the moment decision to go, and we had just come from the ice cream social that the convention management had thrown for the staff. We had, in effect, had our dessert already. This was a shame, because there were some truly sinful dishes on offer. As it was we shared a plate of deep fried calamari for starters, and then chateaubriand for main course. Hey, if you are going to a top class steak house, why not have the best steak? And yes it was all delicious.
What really impressed me, however, was how the restaurant staff adapted to their unusual clients. Remember that this is a restaurant where Mayor Daley and the captains of Chicago industry often eat. Recommended dress is smart business. And here they were with a hotel full of scruffy science fiction fans in jeans and t-shirts. Heck, there were a couple of tables with family groups. Small kids eschewing the wonderful steak for pizza and generally making loud and happy. Did the restaurant get upset? Did they throw us out? Not a bit of it, they were just a polite and attentive as they would have been if we were a bunch of top lawyers. That's top class customer service, and I'm delighted to recommend the place.
By the way, I should give a small warning about price. Kevin doesn't drink, and I've got past being able to consume an entire bottle of wine by myself. The wine list looked very good. If you are a wine drinker, expect to pay a lot more. Also we did not have dessert, which would have added to the bill.
From journal Worldcon Chicago