Whitlock’s Grill (formerly Chicago’s) this long time Whitlock Avenue favorite has recently been purchased and changed its name.
On Wednesday night, we went to Whitlock’s for our 20ty anniversary. I am always, a little but caustious about places that have been sold and the new owners say that it is still the same old thing. Well, rest assure that this is not the case with Chicago, The experience was fantastic in every way from the food to the service. The restaurant still has the same wonderful clubby look of Chicago with its dark woods and leather booths. The bar is one of the prettiest areas of the restaurant and the food is still some of the best in West Cobb.
The new owners are Fernando and Gio Vargas. They are originally from Peru and have been in the Atlanta area for 16 years. Fernando has worked for a number of national chains including Eyed Peas, O’Charlies, Gradys and Bahama Breeze. He spent the past 10 years with Bahama Breeze where he was a chef and test kitchen chef. He is a graduate of the Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Atlanta.
The menu is similar to that of Chicago with steaks, mouth watering prime rib and fish. They offer daily sea food specials with a wide variety of fresh seafood. They have also added some pasta dishes and sandwiches to the menu. A new menu which will maintain the old favorites and add some new dishes is in the works. A couple of the items being considered to be added to the regular menu a Ceviche appetizer and a Seared Tuna entree. They offer fresh seafood and fish specials daily and on weekend s they have offered a wide variety of items including seared tuna, halibut, and grouper and crab legs. Fernando told us that you will continue to see both new seafood and steak specials. In addition to specials of fresh seafood, fish and steaks, Fernando plans to start what he calls Around the World Specials. Anyway enough for now about what’s going to happen and on to our wonderful dinner.
We started our meal with a couple of appetizers. I had a wonderful skillet of pan mussels that were in a delicious sauce of white wine, garlic herbs and tomatoes. The mussels were served in a heavy cast iron skillet. They sauce was great for dipping and we didn’t leave any. Cindy had the Baked Mushroom Soup which was a cream of mushroom soup with a light pastry crust. Both the soup and the appetizer were very good.
After our appetizer and soup, we had their house salad. The house salad has mixed greens, tomatoes, carrots and roasted pecans. They offer a wide range of dressings. I had the combination of Honey-mustard with hot bacon and my wife had the Gorgonzola Vinaigrette. Both were good, but the gorgonzola was unique in that it had both the cheese flavor and a mellow balsamic vinaigrette flavor. We overheard the people at the next table talking about how much they liked the Chunky Blue Cheese dressing. You can choose between the house salad or a Caesar with your entree. Both are served with their delicious hot Croissants and a croc of real butter.
Now came the main act. I had a Rib eye Steak which I always order Pittsburg style medium. Getting a real Pittsburg steak without it being burned or over cooked is the real test of a good steakhouse. Whitlock’s passed with flying colors. The steak was not burned but charred on the outside and it was a perfect medium rare. It was not at all fatty but had enough fat to give it that flavor that Rib eyes are known for, I would highly recommend it to anyone and at $21.95 for a 14 oz. Steak it is a real value.
My wife ordered the Prime Rib which was always our favorite when it was Chicago. I am happy to report that it was a good or maybe even a little better. They have both a creamy horseradish sauce and plain horseradish. They offer three sizes of Prime Rib, an 8oz., a 10oz and a 14oz. My wife had the 10oz. And it was more than enough for her. The Prime Rib was perfectly roasted and seasoned. It as do all the other entrees comes with a salad and a choice of sides. We had the baked potatoes that came out hot which seems to be a problem at many area restaurants. You can also order their Prime Rib blackened or grilled or make it a Surf and Turf by adding either a Crab Cake or Grilled Shrimp. If any of these options doesn’t work for you might want to try Oscar style with a little crab meat for just an extra $4.95. It is easy to understand why Prime Rib is their signature dish with its delicious flavor and all the different ways it is available.
If you are a Prime Rib lover like I am but also don’t always want to spend a lot, they offer two ways to save on it. Every day from 5-7pm, they offer a special early bird menu where you 20% off all entrees on the Menu. Using the Early bird pricing you can get an 8 oz. Portion for just $12.79 or if you want it even cheaper, wait till Tuesday night. They now are offering a $9.99 Prime Rib special with a side every Tuesday night. This is the same great Prime Rib that was Chicago’s and now their signature dish. This is a real value.
We were too full to order a dessert but they do offer a nice selection of desserts.
One thing I feel confident about is this old favorite will keep getting better as Fernando has more time to make his slight changes to the menu and add some thing items. I would put them up with the Aspens as one of the best places to get a steak or Prime Rib in West Cobb. The atmosphere , service and the prices are good, which are the ingredients that make Whitlock’s a real winner.
Whitlock’s Grill is open daily for lunch and dinner from 1130am – 900pm and on weekends they serve dinner till 11pm on Friday and Saturday. They also serve a Sunday brunch from 11am-230pm, 990 Whitlock Ave NW, Marietta, 770- 590-1500