Les Nomades Tops Zagat Rankings as Chef Leaves to Open New Restaurant

By Chuck Sudo in Food on Oct 26, 2011 8:40PM

2011_10_26_les_nomandes.jpg In the pantheon of local restaurants few fly, as the cliche goes, "under the radar" quite like Les Nomades. That should soon change for a couple of reasons.

Zagat named Les Nomades as its top-ranked Chicago restaurant; Alinea can't get the top spot all the time. Zagat calls Les Nomades “one of the last bastions of haute cuisine" while praising the “beautifully prepared" food of chef Chris Nugent.

The ranking may be a tad bittersweet for Les Nomades, as Nugent is leaving to open Goosefoot in Lincoln Square (2656 W. Lawrence Ave.). Named after the edible green that grows freely within Chicago's city limits, Grub Street Chicago's Michael Gebert reports Nugent has no plans on downsizing or making his take on French cuisine less expensive.

[Nugent] plans to offer an 8-course and 12-course tasting menu for an anticipated $90 and $140 in the 36-seat space. But the restaurant will be BYO, putting Goosefoot in the same fast-growing high end-accessible category as places such as Schwa and EL Ideas.

Nugent also told NBC 5's The Talk he plans on opening Goosefoot in November.