I have been a fan of Prasino since the Wicker Park location opened in August, 2011. With two other locations in the Chicago suburbs, as well as one in Missouri, Prasino, which means “green” in Greek, lives up to its name, supporting a sustainable environment. Prasino serves hormone- and antibiotic-free meats, sustainable seafood, and organic produce and eggs. Beyond the food, Prasino incorporates sustainability throughout its restaurants, using reclaimed, recyclable and sustainable building materials, high-efficiency kitchen appliances, cloth napkins, and state-of-the-art hand dryers in the rest rooms, in addition to green cleaning products. During warmer temperatures, the Wicker Park location also has a large outdoor dog-friendly patio for al fresco dining.
Prasino is a terrific choice for a fun dinner out with a group of friends or a date, as well as the perfect spot for a delicious brunch with family or friends. I have been extremely pleased with my previous dining experiences at Prasino for dinner (hello lobster avocado!), but this Chritique will focus solely on weekend brunch, which is comprised of Prasino’s breakfast and lunch menus.
Prasino’s attention to locally sourced, seasonal, and organic ingredients shines through in each dish by highlighting fresh ingredients. Many items are either vegetarian, vegan, or gluten free, but plenty of hearty, meat-centric dishes are also available, such as the short rib skillet and Prasino burger.
I have previously enjoyed both the steel-cut oatmeal and Greek yogurt, the latter served with fresh berries, granola, honey, and mint, when looking for something light. On my last visit, however, I went for the jump start tacos – egg whites, mushrooms, peppers, avocado, cotija cheese, and spicy salsa, and they did not disappoint. Instead of roasted potatoes on the side, I opted for a side Greek salad which was wonderful. My vegetarian girlfriend ordered the tofu scramble – a huge plate of spinach, tomato, onion, and seitan chorizo. Next time, I will order the smoked salmon mimosa, a beautifully arrange dish of chopped tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, and capers, surrounding a flowering arrangement of smoked salmon, along with a bagel and cream cheese. It was as artful as it was tasty.
Brunch cocktails, such as an array of six different types of bloody mary’s, as well as Prosecco cocktails, and “day drinks” are offered. Prasino also makes its own micro-brewed kombuca and sodas. Coffee drinks and teas are also served.
Prasino is one of my favorite restaurants because of its consistent food and service. The dining room is large enough to accommodate last-minute reservations, as well as walk-ins. If diners must wait, the sizable bar area is a nice place to bide the time.
It may not be easy being green, but for Prasino, it works quite well.
1846 West Division, Chicago, 60622
Note: The Lincoln Park location of Prasino is now closed