Cafe Touche

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Joseph Calabrese, who owns Zia's Trattoria just down the road, is behind this casual Northwest Side French bistro with New Orleans-style flair. His menu consists of French classics such as escargots, pate, steak frites, roasted duck and bouillabaisse, with additional daily specials (plats du jour) such as cassoulet and beef Wellington. The Crescent City influence shines through the decor: Pocket doors create an open-air dining room with plush burgundy banquette seating, an antique copper ceiling, dark wood walls and mosaic floors. Salvaged lamps from Chicago's State Street double as wall sconces; they're mixed with lanterns and a warmly lit bar to create a glow throughout the space.