I recently enjoyed a nice dinner at the Sunflower Bistro in La Grange, IL. Right on La Grange Road a couple blocks south of the tracks this cozy restaurant looked closed from the outside as heavy velvet drapes separate the dining room from the foyer and from the view of the street outside. Once we were seated in the rustically decorated dining room I discovered that they had thought of everything--even the underside of the table was padded with foam so that you don't knock your knee against it when crossing your legs! Our waiter was the owner himself who was obviously knowledgeable and enthusiastic about the menu and wine list and the rest of the service (water glasses refilled, empty plates whisked away, etc) was attentive. My dinner companion and I were presented with a basket with an interesting variety of breads and enjoyed porcini mushroom purses for an appetizer. He had a pasta dish featuring wild boar meat and I had a nice half chicken roasted with several spices. Both dishes were quite good and moderately priced (about $14) as was the bottle of wine we shared. We decided against dessert although the list looked tempting (as did the selections of cheeses available for a post-prandial cheese plate) and instead just had coffee, again quite good.
The tab was more than dinner at Chili's or Applebee's but our dinners were much better and freshly prepared by people who care about food. We'll definitely be eating there again!