Dining Chicago:Get a Little French on Bastille Day
In case you've exhausted your yearly tolerance for fireworks, turn your attention to another Independence Day: Bastille Day! The French national holiday on July 14 is a little less raucous than the Fourth, meaning you can let loose and enjoy it without worrying about burning a limb. The best ways to celebrate France involve French food, of course. From a classic bistro to a bustling market, there's a Bastille Day event out there for everyone. Embrace your inner Frenchman and go forth!
(All hail Le Bouchon!)
When it comes to French restaurants in Chicago, it doesn't get much more classic than Le Bouchon. This year's Bastille Day festivities are even sweeter for Le Bouchon, as 2013 marks the restaurant's 20th anniversary. It's the granddaddy of French bistros, and it remains a charming tentpole in Bucktown. So it's destination number one for Bastille Day partakers, especially with their special $25 prix fixe and $1 Kronenbourgs. The restaurant will be open Sunday, July 14, serving a three-course meal that encompasses everything good French food is all about. It's all courtesy of chef Jean Claude Poilevey and his son/sous chef/aww Oliver Poilevey. The duo are cooking up items such as escargots, steak frites, trout Grenobloise, and mousse au chocolat. They're simple pleasures that showcase French cuisine in all their comforting, soul-nourishing glory. Additionally, the restaurant will run Kronenbourg, France's favorite premium lager, for just $1. The regular menu will also be available, by the way.
In case you just can't get enough Poilevey, they'll be part of the Bastille Day festivities at the Chicago French Market too! It's actually a day early, July 13, with Franco merriment happening from 11:30 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. The day kicks off with a cooking demonstration by the father-son team, showcasing some classic French dishes. What else. Follow that knowledge up with some bubbly and jazz. From 1:00 p.m. until 3:00 p.m., lauded jazz-ist Sarah Young will shower guests with the smooth stylings of her voice, backed up by piano, upright bass, and vocals. While swooning over the tunes, guests will be able to enjoy free bubbly.
(Red, white, and blue baked Alaska at Bistronomic)
Still hungry for more? Of course you are. Make like a Parisian raiding the Bastille fortress and get yourself to Bistronomic to enjoy their own version of a three-course menu. This one's available all week long, from yesterday until July 14. Chef Martial Noguier has a way of fusing seasonal Midwestern ingredients with classic-meets-contemporary French flavors. Menu items include mussels mariniere, duck breast with roasted peaches and corn puree, and a Bastille-tastic blue, white, and red baked Alaska, with colors representative of France's flag. Ah patriotism. The prix fixe goes for $30, or $40 with wine pairings.