Michelin just announced the winners of this year's stars in Chicago. Alinea retained its three stars and is now the only restaurant to hold the guide's highest rating in the city. L2O lost two stars, dropping to one. Charlie Trotter's and RIA retained their two stars.
I'm a bad Chinese tea drinker, according to my grandfather. He drank his oolong black, the way good Chinese should. Me? Almost as soon as I could read, I learned about the English and their sweet, milky tea. When I tried it, I knew I'd found my tea people. Maybe it was environmental, since I was born in Hong Kong when it was still a British colony.
Of course I'm simpfliying. At dim sum, I'll sip my tea straight; same with many fine rare teas. My tea expert friends need not worry.
But at a recent afternoon tea, hosted by Bertha Palmer—or rather, the Greater Midwest Foodways Alliance presenting the historical actress Leslie Goddard playing the part of Mrs.
Tonight, my old food forum friend, Steve Plotnicki, is co-hosting The Modern Midwestern Table at North Pond. My old fishing buddy, Bruce Sherman, will be welcoming some pretty amazing chefs doing some pretty amazing food from around the Middle West into his kitchen. I've been to Josh Adams' June in Peoria Heights (not Peoria, but the mansions-overlooking-bluffs Peoria Heights) and it's definitely amazing. Josh applies a restrained use of modern techniques, like sous vide, applied to locally foraged, grown, and raised ingredients. The other notable chefs in town tonight hail from Sanford in Milwaukee, Revolver in Findlay (Ohio), and Niche in St. Louis.
Tomorrow Martha's in town! For lunch (luncheon?) Mrs. Stewart will be at an American Cancer Society event at the Hotel Orrington in Evanston: a Conversation with Martha Stewart. In the evening, Martha will be conversing again at a Junior League of Chicago reception at The Standard Club. Please note at the latter event dress code is business casual and will be enforced.
After a long day yesterday I was actually afraid that I might miss mushroom club. I can't even tell you how sad that would have made me. I don't even know that I could explain it to myself.
In any case, I did make it. Not only was it wonderful to be surrounded with good, smart people—talking about something that might help save the world—but I learned that next month's meeting is the annual potluck.
Afterwards, I was starving, not having had a chance to eat since lunch, which is fairly common among friends who work in the business of food.
As it was late, we split an extra large bowl of their warming, fragrant pho—and quite frankly because you could lose yourself in the extra large bowl. Worse fates could be had.
Tonight, Wednesday, remember to BYOS (Bring Your Own Spoon) to the Soup & Bread book release party at the Hideout, asks author and soup mistress Martha Bayne. And might I suggest, bring your own bowl and cloth napkin too? Martha's been hosting the free weekly soup dinner for three years now, raising over $15,000 in donations for the Greater Chicago Food Depository, among others, spoon by spoon. Tonight’s soups will be brought to you by West Town Tavern, Swim Café, The Butcher & Larder, Milk & Honey Café, MANA Food Bar, Revolution Brewing, Longman & Eagle, Bite Café and “others”; bread from La Farine Bakery; and beer from Rev Brew too. The event is open and free, but please remember to make a donation, and buy a book if you can.
Legend has it that they were the ancestors to our Halloween candy and trick-or-treating tradition, but they carried more signficance: For every cake eaten, a soul was released from Purgatory. T.
I first met Hank Shaw, a rifle-packing Renaissance man, not through his own fine food blog (Hunter Angler Gardener Cook), but through that of his friend and neighbor's, the wildly widely read Simply Recipes. From there it was down the rabbit hole, emerging in Hank's world, one where he hunts and forages the wide open lands and seas for nearly all his own food, cooks it up with style—and finishes the night with a Fernet-Branca.
But we're getting ahead of ourselves.
Hank just wrote the companion book to his life of adventure (Hunt, Gather, Cook: Finding the Forgotten Feast) and has been on a cross country road trip/book tour/hunting trip—punctuated with occasional author dinners with like-minded chefs and diners.
Hank recently stopped in the Chicago area at Paul Virant's Vie.
It's not socially acceptable for adults to go trick-or-treating (so they say) so if you don't have a kid to front you—or especially if you do—get your costumes ready for the inaugural Masquerade del Mercado Sunday night at Carnivale. Those crazy Green City Market Junior Board kids will be hosting this new fall fundraiser. As a taste of treats to come, their online auction is live now. High bid's currently $2,000 for a "Night out with the Chefs," the Chefs being Girl and the Goat's Stephanie Izard, Old Town Social's Jared Van Camp, The Trencherman's Michael Sheerin, and Goose Island's brewmaster Jared Rouben—all leading a night of debauchery. Bail not included, I'm presuming.
Thursday, Uncommon Ground on Devon hosts a Koval Distiller's Tasting Dinner. The three-course menu includes a goat cheese fennel salad, sausage, a pear tart, and Koval cocktails with every course. Have you toured the UCOD rooftop farm and/or the distillery?