For our Home & Design issue, we’re heading a little further afield than usual to Hotel EMC2 in the heart of downtown Chicago. Tucked next to the lobby is a two-story temple to culinary creativity named The Albert.

The atmosphere is striking. Stuffed bookshelves and file cabinets of all varieties stacked two stories high take up the entire east wall. An elevated booth is backed with a chalk- board full of equations. The lights in the foyer are a constellation of frosted bulbs in a variety of shapes. Above the bar, a giant decorative infuser stands like laboratory scaffolding made of oversized jars and flasks. The contents of the jars cycle with the season, for our visit it was a picturesque tangle of vines and wildflowers.

The design of each dish is as arresting as the flavors on the plate. Even the cocktails. A drink called In Theory mixes the flavors of a Manhattan with a margarita while a thick black stripe of preserved lime salt runs the vertical length of the glass. Stylish and delicious. Every plate coming out of Executive Chef Larry Feldmeier’s kitchen is a statement piece. One glance at the Crispy Chicken Leg is proof enough that the man knows how to command your attention. From starters to dessert, we couldn’t have enjoyed our evening more.

The Albert is located inside Hotel EMC2 at 228 E. Ontario Street in Chicago, 312-471-3883,