With the warmer temps we have been experiencing here in Chicago this winter, it feels like summer is just around the corner. And, a visit to Hampton Social makes us crave those long summer days even more. Open since July of last year, Hampton Social brings a bit of Long Island’s Montauk Yacht Club to Chicago, including its nautical theme and white washed walls. A perfect spot in the summer when the large front windows slide open letting in fresh air, it still manages to feel warm enough even on the coldest days.
After visiting for both brunch and dinner, one thing is evident: stick with the seafood, and you will be a happy sailor.
On a recent brunch visit, the special Lobster Omelet, served with breakfast potatoes, was excellent. A generous amount of lobster, along with an abundance of tomatoes and avocado, was stuffed inside the fluffy omelet, and the flavors were wonderful. However, the Chicken & Waffles were a big disappointment, with thick, doughy waffles that were under-cooked weighing down the dish that could not be overcome by the average fried chicken.
At dinner, though also available during brunch, Mama’s Deviled Eggs cannot be missed. Three egg halves are topped with a heaping portion of a creamy lobster & prawn salad, with plenty of chunks of seafood throughout, and pickled fresno chilis, giving the devilishly good eggs a little kick. These are my absolute favorite deviled eggs in the city.
You also cannot go wrong with a selection of the fresh oysters, which rotate based upon seasonality and availability.
The Crab Cakes, served with a remoulade and petite salad, are also a nice starter, with a good ratio of crab meat to breading and vegetables.
For a main dish, try the Diver Scallops, pan-seared, with white cheddar grits, pancetta, and a creole-butter sauce.
And, while basic, the Gulf Shrimp Cocktail feature fresh, meaty shrimp and a zesty cocktail sauce.
Desserts offered include hand-scooped gelato or sorbetto, decent macarons, and a better than expected Rice Krispie treat.
Hampton Social is open for lunch Monday through Friday, dinner seven days a week, and for brunch on Saturday and Sunday. Reservations are accepted and recommended. It is a great spot for a relaxed lunch or brunch, a dinner with friends, or a date night before heading downstairs to the new Jazz club, The Bassment.
353 West Hubbard Street, Chicago, Illinois 60654