Wilde & Greene is the new restaurant/natural food market in Westfield Old Orchard in Skokie. It's a place that roused my curiosity, having been there in that same space at least a half a dozen times when it was a food court. That's why when I got an e-vite to a girls' night out event at Wilde & Greene, I grabbed my friend Roberta and off we went.
The restaurant boasts that the food is natural and prepared from scratch "right before your eyes." But the word on Yelp is mixed with more than a few really awful reviews.
We didn't know what to expect.
Turns out Wilde and Greene is similar to Foodlife in Water Tower Place. There are 18 food and beverage stations. Customers get to choose from offerings such as fresh salads, pizza, made-to-order crepes, seafood, sushi, sandwiches, pasta, baked goods and gelato. And you pay at the end with a "credit card."
The food being created at the stations looked fabulous, and with colorful fruits and vegetables piled up in front of many of the stations (as decoration), the place has a healthy vibe.
I can't really tell you how the options at the stations tasted because we grazed at the fete, where a variety of yummy appetizers were served such as goat cheese rolled in smoked salmon, tomato bruschetta with a garlicy-pesto spread, and pulled pork on mini broiche buns.
For me, the desserts at the party were the star attractions (I know. Big surprise), especially the berry-topped cheesecake with a cookie-like crust and the rich, buttery apple strudel. The brownies, however, were a little dry, but not to worry. Party-goers washed them down with some wonderful fresh-squeezed orange juice (as much as you wanted!), and there was plenty of wine to go round, too.
On the downside, the restaurant is loud and cavernous, and I have to admit I'm not a huge fan of the food station setup. First timers, especially, will find W & G confusing and perhaps a bit intimidating. Oddly, there was nothing all that wild about the restaurant or the event, and I don't remember being served anything green at the party.
Still, I'll try Wilde & Greene again (not the market though. The prices were too high), next time as a paying customer. When I do, I'll tell you what I think.