Dining Chicago

Weekend Planner: California Wine Dinners, European Sausages, Gingerbread Houses, and Cookie Class

Celebrate California at Telegraph

California wine takes the spotlight for Telegraph's latest series of wine dinners, available through the rest of December. The menu serves to highlight the wines that the staff discovered on a trip through the state this past September. The trip entailed visiting 14 small-production, natural producers, from Paso Robles to Sonoma. This jived perfectly with chef Johnny Anderes cooking style, who derives much of his culinary inspiration from the New American trends of California chefs in the 1970's and '80's. As a celebration of California wines and California food, Anderes contrived three courses inspired by three California chefs who inspired him the most, Alice Waters, Jeremiah Tower, and Judy Rodgers. Guests partaking in the California wine dinner menu will be treated to one course at a time, subsequently paired with wine. Dishes include Burrata salad with radicchio, extra virgin olive oil, and balsamic vinegar; Spanish mackerel with grilled romaine, mint, and walnuts; and semolina taglietelle with housemade sausage, orange, winter greens, and pine nuts. The menu costs $40 per person, plus $20 for wine pairings.

(Telergaph. Credit: Tom Harris / Hedrick Blessing)

Stock Up on European Sausages at Fumare Meats & Deli

'Tis the season for Swedish potato sausage and Polish blood sausage! Because nothing says "happy holidays" quite like encased meat infused with blood. For Fumare Meats & Deli, it's all about getting back to their Old World roots, celebrating European traditions throughout December with these two specialty sausages. The Swedish potato sausage, aka potatis korv, is a fresh sausage made with ground pork, beef, potatoes, onions, salt, and pepper, while the Polish blood sausage is made by cooking blood (gulp) with pork, imbuing a dark-as-sin color.

Marvel at the InterContinental's Gingerbread House

Make like Hansel and Gretel and get thee to the massive gingerbread house on display at the InterContinental Chicago Magnificent Mile. The 10-foot tall masterpiece is the handiwork of chef Randy Reed, who spent six weeks polishing his gingerbread house. It's now on display in the lobby, loaded with over 1,200 pounds of product, including 500 pounds of flour, 110 pounds of butter, and 1,020 eggs. It's adorned with 320 peppermint candles, 300 caramels, and 36 candy canes. Look but don't touch, because remember what happened when Hansel and Gretel started eating that house...

Gingerbread house
(Gingerbread house at the InterContinental)

Cookie Class at ZED451

ZED451 pastry chef Kate Milashus continues her "Confections With Kate" cooking series with an event that is perfectly apropos for the holidays: cookies! It takes place December 14 at 2:00 p.m., wherein attendees enjoy peppermint latte cocktails while being diligent cookie students. The fee to attend is $20 per person and reservations can be made via 312-266-6691.

Neighborhoods: West LoopRiver NorthLogan Square

Like a traditional Italian deli, Fumare (which means "smoke") sells locally made ham, sausage, bacon, prosciutto, pastrami and more. Sandwiches and sides are also available.

Former avec chef John Anderes has landed at the third wine-focused resto from the folks behind Webster's Wine Bar. You'll find inventive small plates as well as an impressive wine...

599439_418782544830216_1477083308_n Bar Communal-table_ Telegraph-room-shot-credi

Copyright © 2020 Chicago's Restaurant Guide. All Rights Reserved.