…………Pre-game for the Marathon at These Pasta and Protein Palaces
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Pre-game for the Marathon
Whether you’re running or not, the Bank of America Chicago Marathon is an apt excuse to splurge on pasta and meat with reckless abandon, all in the name of “fueling up.” The carbs and proteins are essential for maintaining stamina for a 26-mile race. And even if you’re not participating, it’s always nice to eat with your friends out of solidarity, right? Here are some fine suggestions for pre-Marathon dining this year in Chicago:
Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse: Marathon-runners all know about fueling up with pasta and carbs. But just as important is a good portion of protein to help amp up your stamina. You can easily do so at Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar in River North. This place is meaty Mecca, with protein sources derived from all over. Whatever fits your fancy and whatever puts a skip in your step/jog, Fleming’s has you covered. Start by sharing small plates like sliced filet mignon and petite New Zealand lamb chops before beefing things up with heartier plates like their prime bone-in rib-eye, prime New York strip, peppercorn steak, and truffle-poached lobster. On Sunday night, unwind after the race with their prime rib dinner, available only on Sunday nights.
For more about Chicago Steaks: CHICAGO BEST STEAK.COM
………..Weekday Planner: Frontier Hosts Cocktail Class, Spice Route Dinner With Carrie Nahabedian, #TBT at Belly Shack, Firestone Walker Beer Dinner
Spice Route Dinner With Carrie Nahabedian
Embeya’s Spice Route Dinner Series With Carrie Nahabedian
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This week, Embeya embarks on a Spice Route journey featuring the handiwork of a rotating roster of talented guest chefs. The inaugural Spice Route dinner series takes place October 7, as executive chef Mike Sheerin teams up with Carrie Nahabedian of NAHA and Brindille for a five-course family-style feast of 15 to 18 dishes. Said dishes will borrow inspiration from the likes of the Middle East, Asia, France, and the U.S. The impetus for the new series was to serve as an homage to the ancient spice routes and trade networks of yore, which served to fuse flavors and techniques across a plethora of disparate regions. At Embeya, the dinner series encourages chefs to do similarly, melding their distinct styles and flavors together into one vibrant feast. Wine pairings will be provided courtesy of executive director Attila Gyulai. It all starts with a reception at 6:30 p.m., followed by the tasting menu at 7:00 p.m. Tickets are $125 per person and can be purchased by calling the restaurant.
#TBT at Belly Shack
Over the years, Belly Shack has amassed an impressive portfolio of memorable dishes indicative of the restaurant’s Latin and Asian stylings. In order to commemorate past staples, the restaurant is conducting a Throwback Thursday (#TBT) series this month, wherein each Thursday features a different special dish from menus past. With Belly Shack turning six this month, there’s a lot of old goodies to bring back too. On October 8, it’s a meatball sandwich with somen noodles, chili paste, and mint; followed by Lola’s lechon with yellow river rice on October 15, and a variety of throwback dishes during the anniversary week of October 20 through October 25.
Firestone Walker Beer Dinner
Firestone Walker Brewing Company steps into the spotlight at Bread & Wine for a special autumnal beer dinner on October 6. Running from 6:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m., the six-course affair features various craft beers paired with seasonal fare by chef Caleb Trahan. These dishes include morcilla with lemongrass and sweet pepper; whitefish with hay and Champagne grapes; ground cherry with tomato and pineapple sage; and pork with buttermilk and onion. Beers on deck for the occasion are Easy Jack, Pivo Pilsner, Opal, Double Jack, Wooky Jack, and DBA. The cost for the event is $65 per person and seats can be snagged by calling Bread & Wine.
……Balena, Tapworks, and Baderbrau: Brunch Bites<!
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..The folks behind The Bristol, GT Fish & Oyster, Formento’s, and Perennial Virant know what they’re doing when it comes to first-rate brunch. So it’s not surprising at all that they’ve cooked up another stellar brunch program at Balena, the latest restaurant to join the brunch fray from B. Hospitality and Boka Restaurant Group. With chef Chris Pandel at the helm, you can bet your ass this is a brunch menu not to miss, featuring a wide array of Italian-tinged offerings like a porchetta sandwich with tomato jam, fried egg, and avocado; a sweet crespelle with mascarpone and roasted grapes; charred bean pole Beneidct with Balena hollandaise and tigelle; and basil panzanella with poached egg, grilled zucchini, and braised kale. Also, Balena now offerings extra opportunity to partake in their famed pizzas, in the form of brunchy options like a smoked salmon version with creme fraiche and capers, or one strewn with peaches, goat cheese, and pancetta. Balena even goes so far as to offer a solid kids’ menu, featuring pasta, pizza, grilled cheese, and a pizza-themed Mad Lib. Brunch cocktails, wines, sides, salads, and pasta round out the menu for adults. Brunch is served Sundays from 10:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m.
………….For more about Chicago Steaks: CHICAGO BEST STEAK.COM
…………Boozy Dinners at Ampersand Wine Bar, Elixir Lounge
Boozy Dinners at Ampersand Wine Bar
This week, it’s all about the boozy dinners. Between two different wine dinners and a bourbon dinner held in honor of National Bourbon Heritage Month, it’s gonna be real easy to stay pleasantly buzzed all week long. Read on:
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After-Hours Wine Dinner at Ampersand
Ravenswood’s coolest new spot, Ampersand wine bar, is hosting its first ever “after-hours” wine dinner on September 28. Don’t worry, it’s not too late; it is a school night after all. It all goes down at 7:30 p.m., featuring a first taste of the new fall menu, along with wine pairings and desserts. Robert Houde, former head sommelier at Charlie Trotter’s, will be on hand to tell guests about selections from the wine list. Just good wine, good food, and good times. The price is $65 per person and tickets can be snagged on Ampersand’s website.
Bourbon Dinner at Elixir Lounge
Wine isn’t the only thing taking the spotlight this week. In honor of National Bourbon Heritage Month, which comes to a conclusion at the end of September, Andersonville’s newly opened Elixir Lounge is raising a glass to the spirit with a spirited dinner on September 30. A four-course bourbon dinner with cocktail pairings featuring Angel’s Envy bourbon will take place from 6:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. The menu for the evening by chefs Bernardo Ibarra and Steve Farbstein includes crispy pork belly with soy miso glaze, fresh peach and grape chutney,
For more about Chicago Steaks: CHICAGO BEST STEAK.COM
#seafood , #RiverNorth , #Wine , #cocktails , #Andersonville , #bourbon , #Ravenswood Ampersand Wine Bar , Elixir Lounge
Fall Restaurants We’re Hungry For
Fall Restaurants We’re Hungry For at LatinCity
It seems like just yesterday we were salivating over the onset of Broken Shaker, GreenRiver,Sink|Swim, Bar Siena, Pomp and Circumstance, and the new iteration of Johnny’s Grill. Another summer has come and gone, bringing with it a slew of exceptional new dining and drinking destinations. But now it’s on to fall, and while patio weather may be dwindling, there’s still lots to look forward to in Chicago.
Latinicity: A couple years ago, Chicagoans anxiously awaited the arrival of Eataly, a gargantuan food fall filled with restaurants, bars, shopping, and more. In a bit of deja vu, this fall is once again all about the imminent food hall, albeit this one boasts a Latin accent courtesy of world-renowned chef Richard Sandoval. Latinicity is just about set to premiere inside the Loop’s Block 37, taking up thousands of square feet on the third floor of the downtown mall. Somewhat similar to Eataly, guests can expect a roving array of food stalls, along with a full-service Spanish restaurant, drinking spots, plenty of groceries, retail areas, and a grab-and-go food spot on the lower level of Block 37. It’s the most ambitious dining endeavor of the season and one we can’t wait to check out.
Packed: We’ve never been so excited for dumplings as we are now. Ever since hearing that acclaimed chef Mike Sheerin would be doing dumplings for a casual restaurant in Hyde Park, Chicagoans have been curiously eager to see what he would cook up. If his social media posts are any indication, we’re in for a real treat. Eclectic, contemporary dumplings span the globe for inspiration, deriving flavors from Asia, Europe, the U.S., and beyond. The result this fall will be Packed. Our guess is that the restaurant will be packed with patrons as well.
Pork & Mindy’s: A celebrity chef is giving low-and-slow cookery the fast-casual treatment with this imminent Bucktown BBQ spot. Jeff Mauro of Food Network Sandwich King fame is the man behind the brand at Pork & Mindy’s, a company that has been making the rounds on the food events circuit with a line of bottled sauces. Now Mauro is ready to take the company to the next level with
Heirloom Tomato Dinner @ Osteria Via Stato
Heirloom Tomato Dinner at Osteria Via Stato
Summer isn’t over yet! Actually it is, hate to break it to you. But you can still cling to a bit of that sunshine at Osteria Via Stato‘s imminent heirloom tomato. The annual affair always makes for a nice summer finale, showcasing the season’s most luscious fruits. The River North Italian restaurant is partnering with Nick Nichols of Nichols Farm & Orchard for the dinner, which takes place September 23 at 6:30 p.m. It’s a multi-course, tomato-themed meal presided over by chef David DiGregorio, who begins the dinner with passed appetizers before progressing to the degustation. The cost is $68 per person and reservations can be made by calling the restaurant or visiting its website.
Farmers’ Market Dinner at Summer House Santa Monica
Fall also happens to be high time for some of the best farmers’ market provisions of the year. After all, it’s harvest season. The farmers’ market dinner at Summer House Santa Monica on September 23 is an apt, delicious way to bid summer adieu and welcome fall with open arms and open mouths. The family-style feast will feature a mixed grill, various salads and sides, housemade sausages, cheeses, and more. Dinner is from 6:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. and the cost to attend is $65 per person. Tickets can be accessed by calling Summer House Santa Monica or emailing Katie at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Year of Mike Sheerin
He also announced he would take the role of executive chef at Embeya
The Year of Mike Sheerin
Everybody loves a comeback. Just look at the years-long fanfare following the demise and subsequent renaissance of Britney Spears. Right here in Chicago, we’re in the midst of one of the greatest culinary renaissances, happening to one of our most promising chefs. This isn’t to suggest that Mike Sheerin self-imploded like Britney, but the chef definitely had his fair share of drama in recent years (see: departures from Trenchermen and Cicchetti). Now, 2015 is truly shaping up to be the year of Sheerin.
Dumplings at Packed
Following his seemingly abrupt exit from Cicchetti, Sheerin’s first announcement came earlier this year in the form of a dumpling. To be precise, Sheerin was planning a dumpling restaurant called Packed for Hyde Park, a bit of a far cry from his background at places like Blackbird and Trenchermen. The surprising announcement signaled and affirmed the uprising of Hyde Park as a dining destination, as well as a new career era for the talented chef. “Dumplings reimagined” became the promising tagline for Packed, where Sheerin is working to showcase the international mainstay in a variety of contemporary new ways. Unlike typical dim sum or empanadas, Packed will feature outre creations like Reuben dumplings and broccoli dumplings in black sesame wrappers.
In case that wasn’t enough, while Sheerin was teasing his new dumpling endeavor, he also announced he would take the role of executive chef at Embeya.
S’mores Baked Alaska: Sweet of the Week
S’mores Baked Alaska @ Atwood
Summer may be fading, but I’ll be damned if I allow that to inhibit my rampant obsession with s’mores. The quintessential fireside dessert pops up all over dessert menus in Chicago during the summer months, featured in everything from pies and cupcakes to lattes, cookies, and pot de cremes. But I saved the best for last this season, because the end all-be all of s’mores desserts is the s’mores baked Alaska at Atwood. Hurry up and get there, because this decadent gem probably won’t be around much longer. Thanks, autumn.
The dessert comes courtesy of chef Brian Millman, who thoroughly revamps a nostalgic favorite in a bold new way. Baked Alaska, of course, is the perfect vessel for a s’mores dessert, in that the exterior
Oktoberfest 2015 Dining and Drinking Guide
Oktoberfest 2015 Dining and Drinking Guide ( The Dawson)
Bohemian House: No better place to celebrate Oktoberfest than a contemporary Eastern European restaurant. Bohemian House is getting in on the festivities in a big way this year via Schnitzelfest. That’s right, a whole multi-day festival to honor the almighty schnitzel, one of the quintessential noshes for Oktoberfest menus. Happening nightly from September 21 through September 23, the restaurant plays host to guest chefs from around the city serving up their signature schnitzel innovations. On September 21, diners can feast on duck schnitzel by TETE Charcuterie chefs Thomas Rice and Kurt Guzowski; on September 22, it’s merguez schnitzel by The Bristol’s chef Sean Pharr; and on September 23, Nathan Sears of The Radler provides smoked brisket schnitzel. Each evening, the guest chefs will be in attendance to mix and mingle. Diners will also be able to wash things down with beer specials like Goose Island Oktoberfest, Erdinger Oktoberfest, and Timmermans Pumpkin Lambicus.
Troquet River North: It may be French, but Troquet River North is paying homage to its European neighbor with some Bavarian specials from September 19 through October 4. To drink, there’s Revolution Oktoberfest and Two Brothers Atom Smasher Octoberfest Lager on hand, both for $5. To eat, chef Tim Davidson is whipping up house marinated sauerbraten sandwiches with pickled red cabbage on pretzel buns.
Timothy O’Toole’s Pub: For two days, Timothy O’Toole’s swaps out its Irish swag in favor of German garb. The famed Irish bar celebrates
Rosh Hashanah dining specials in Chicago.
Rosh Hashanah Dining Guide 2015 @ Beatrix
Beatrix: Since Rosh Hashanah is all about welcoming a “sweet new year,” honey and apples are paramount. Get thee to Beatrix to partake in their apple oatmeal cookies. And don’t forget their local apples and honey, a crisp and healthy way to beckon the Jewish new year. Both items are available for purchase at the pastry counter through Tuesday.
Kanela Breakfast Club: Spend your Rosh Hashanah days the nourishing way, with a bowlful of matzo balls. In honor of the holiday, Kanela Breakfast Club will be serving up matzo ball soup on special through September 15.
Bistronomic: Those looking to enjoy a chef-crafted prix fixe experience should make a reservation at Bistronomic, where executive chef/owner Martial Noguier will be offering a three-course meal available through Tuesday, September 15. Guests get options for each festive course. Dishes include appetizers like Faroe Island salmon escabeche, organic barley risotto, and Chioggia and golden beet salad; entrees such as prime beef short ribs, yellow walleye pike, and fall medley of farm vegetables; and dessert options of apple challah bread pudding and fig and honey financier. The cost
#RiverNorth , #GoldCoast , #Bistronomic , #RoshHashanah , #KanelaBreakfastClub , #apples , #Gibsons , #Beatrix , #honey , #Joe’sSeafood