The Whale Logan Square
We love weddings at the house for a multitude of reasons…but secretly, one of our favorite reasons is it gives us the opportunity to go out to brunch and do some research around the neighborhood! I think we’ve tried just about everywhere in the West Loop, so consider us experts around here, and we’ve started to branch out to nearby neighborhoods we think our guests would like to try. This past weekend we were able to test out a brand new place in Logan Square called The Whale.
The Whale opened this past July and was already on a list of “top brunches near me” when I plugged the search into Google. I always love a good themed restaurant, and The Whale has a casino theme to it (and they absolutely did NOT hold back on the décor). There is a giant basket chandelier when you walk in the front door, blackjack themed tables, and a bar along the back that could rival any hotel in Vegas. There’s massive banquettes, luxe velvet couches, a live DJ on the weekends all day long, and the serving staff wears a similar uniform to those you’d see in a hotel casino – suspenders, a crisp white top, and navy slacks to match the seating. To be honest, at times I felt like this place belonged in the Loop, but found it interesting that something so modern and luxurious would find itself in Logan Square, a notoriously hipster neighborhood. I think it might be a breath of fresh air though, as most of the places in Logan are known for being quite “dive-y.” The Whale hosts a robust dinner menu, but on the weekends has an excellent brunch selection, and even has some late night options for your bar hopping snack needs.
Now for the moment you’ve all been waiting for: the grub. We one hundred percent indulged ourselves that morning and got a bottle of Chandon, which was excellent. Anytime we all go out to brunch we always share dishes, because it’s pretty much a crime to just choose one breakfast dish in our opinion. To start out, we got the Blueberry Muffin Iron Skillet, which we thought would be something similar to our pastries we serve daily. It turned out it was very much like our classic breakfast cake, only with an extra crumble topping that really changed the game. It also came with a side of lemon curd that was to die for. For our second course, we sprang for the smoked salmon toast, mostly to compare it to our own and see what we could do differently to change it up. This one in particular, rather than having an egg on top like we usually do, had a deviled egg spread on the bottom with the salmon on top, which was loved by all of us.
The first of the two entrees we chose was the Trout Schnitzel, my nomination for best dish of the morning. It was a generous portion of trout, breaded and pan seared, topped with chive scrambled eggs and lemon-chili butter. The trout was cooked to perfection, but the only drawback was the egg texture. To be fair, if you don’t cook eggs every morning for several people, you might not be as picky about your eggs as we all are. Our second selection was the Crab Cake Benny, and this one did not disappoint. With most Benedict’s, you don’t get toast at the bottom, however this one came with it. I thought it was a nice addition to the dish as the crab cake is not always thick enough to warrant being an entire meal. The hollandaise was wonderful, and the poached egg was perfectly runny. It also came with a generous portion of salad, which I wasn’t super big on, but I’m not a huge salad person to start with so take that as you will.
Overall, the entire meal was stellar. From service, to timing, to atmosphere and to the food itself, we were consistently impressed and I would highly recommend it to anyone looking for a bomb brunch spot in Logan!
The Whale is open for dinner 5pm-2am M-Th, 4pm-2am Friday’s, 10am-3am Saturday and 9:30am-2am Sunday at 2427 N. Milwaukee Avenue.