When you walk into Komo, an upscale Japanese spot in West Loop, you’re immediately greeted by a welcoming host and an enjoyable glass of chilled sake that’s straightforward and refreshing. But everything you'll experience after that is the opposite—from their over-the-top dining room full of cherry blossom trees, illuminated mirrors, and flowery wallpaper that makes you feel like you’re eating in an expensive bathroom, to their over-accessorized $160 seven-course Japanese tasting menu.
Though the dishes are well-executed, they prioritize frivolous pizzazz over actually tasting good. Like the flavorless carrot soup, where the unnecessary addition of crab and cilantro oil doesn’t prevent it from tasting slightly better than Campbell's. Or, the mochi ice cream which randomly tops the foie gras and lobster motoyaki, bulldozing through the balance of sweet and savory like the Kool-Aid man.
While the simpler courses are delicious—a perfectly fried octopus or the wagyu cooked on top of a hot stone for example—those limited bites don’t justify the meal’s price tag. In a neighborhood where the restaurant race is hyper-competitive, you're better off checking out Kumiko for drinks and small plates, Mako for omakase, or Momotaro for a little bit of everything. Komo is left tying its Balenciaga’s at the starting line.