WBEZ | LTHForum http://www.wbez.org/tags/lthforum Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Culinary adventures along the Illinois River http://www.wbez.org/content/culinary-adventures-along-illinois-river <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2011-August/2011-08-19/soft shell crab_CHC_CAtherine Lambrecht.jpg" alt="" /><p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="caption" height="306" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/insert-image/2011-August/2011-08-19/fried-catfish-smaller-2_flickr_ed-fisher.jpg" title="Fried catfish from Ron's Cajun Connection in Utica, Ill. (Flickr/Ed Fisher)" width="630"></p><p>At a gathering of fellow foodies, Catherine Lambrecht was asked the following hypothetical question: If you had 10 days paid vacation and an unlimited budget, where would you go?</p><p>Her cohorts listed distant locales with enticing food cultures: Thailand, Switzerland. But the co-founder of LTHForum, an online site dedicated to parsing the fine details of the region’s local eats, replied this way: “Give me the budget and a car full of gas.”</p><p>The moderator of the conversation snorted.</p><p>“What, are you going to Gary?”</p><p>“I can make a day out of Gary,” Lambrecht told an audience assembled by Culinary Historians of Chicago in June. “There’s serendipity involved.”</p><p>Serendipity, and in Lambrecht’s case, persistence. To prove her point that one can discover delicious food in the most surprising, out-of-the-way places, Lambrecht has made a habit of exploring not just Chicago, but the city’s far outer suburbs.</p><p>When she heard that there was a region along the Illinois River where one could obtain fried turtle – a local delicacy – she spent the next three or four years hunting down leads until she found a cluster of restaurants that still served the dish.</p><p>Along the way she found a number of other unusual, and often delicious, local practices, including tortellini in broth curiously called “ravs,” and an entire county where local restaurants are fiercely competitive about their fried chicken.</p><p>In June, she shared some of her discoveries, starting with her fried turtle odyssey. &nbsp;You can hear her story, and her review of the food, in the audio above.</p><p><em><a href="../../series/dynamic-range">Dynamic Range</a> showcases hidden gems unearthed from Chicago Amplified’s vast archive of public events and appears on weekends. Catherine Lambrecht spoke at an event presented by <a href="http://www.culinaryhistorians.org/">Culinary Historians of Chicago</a> in June. Click <a href="../../story/dining-under-radar-western-suburbs-and-bit-beyond-88995">here</a> to hear the event in its entirety.</em></p></p> Fri, 19 Aug 2011 20:20:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/content/culinary-adventures-along-illinois-river A BBQ pilgrimage for LTH Forum’s Gary Wiviott http://www.wbez.org/story/bbq-pilgrimage-lth-forum%E2%80%99s-gary-wiviott-88592 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2011-June/2011-06-30/Gary Wiviott_Flickr_ALA.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Gary Wiviott has some serious foodie credentials as the founder of the wildly popular culinary chat site <a href="http://lthforum.com/bb/index.php">LTH Forum</a>. On LTH, named for Chinatown’s <a href="http://www.lthforum.com/bb/viewtopic.php?t=3716">Little Three Happiness</a>, commenters parse the latest offerings from beloved neighborhood joints like <a href="../../story/dessert/secret-history-indiana-pie">Hoosier Mama Pie Company</a> and debate the merits of northern vs. southern Thai food.</p><p>Despite the site’s popularity it was not a financial success, and Wiviott has been plagued by money troubles in recent years. He <a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/features/food/stew/chi-bankruptcy-puts-lth-forum-up-for-sale-20110601,0,5117274.story">was forced to file for bankruptcy protection</a> in November of 2010 and put the site up for auction. The <em>Tribune</em> reported Wednesday that <a href="http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2011-06-29/features/chi-lth-forum-sold-for-40000-20110629_1_great-neighborhood-restaurants-awards-chowhound-boards-web-sites">the forum has been sold</a> for $40,000 to a group of long-time contributors who say they plan to keep its basics intact.</p><p>Given his background, it makes sense that Wiviott would be a food obsessive, who once, for example, spent the better part of a year making miso soup from scratch every day for breakfast. He later transferred his passions to barbeque, penning the somewhat audaciously titled <a href="http://www.lowslowbbq.com/?page_id=3">Low &amp; Slow: Everything You Know About BBQ is Wrong</a>.</p><p>His book outlines the self-described “BBQ Mussolini’s” strict 5-step program that aims to help serious ‘Q-ers unlock the secrets of the smoker. Wiviott insists you throw away your lighter fluid, and eventually your store-bought rubs and sauces, in favor of carefully built, clean-burning fires and homemade brine.</p><p>In a 2009 talk given to the Culinary Historians of Chicago, Wiviott described a Texas trip that radically changed his grilling perspective. As you fire up your grills this holiday weekend, you may want to consider his epiphany, or check out the tips from his lessons. The former is in the excerpt above, and the latter is in the full audio, posted <a href="../../episode-segments/low-and-slow-bbq">here</a>.</p><p><a href="../../series/dynamic-range">Dynamic Range</a> showcases hidden gems unearthed from Chicago Amplified’s vast archive of public events and appears on weekends. Gary Wiviott spoke at an event presented by <a href="http://www.culinaryhistorians.org/">Culinary Historians of Chicago</a> in July of 2009. Click <a href="../../episode-segments/low-and-slow-bbq">here</a> to hear the event in its entirety.</p></p> Thu, 30 Jun 2011 20:40:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/bbq-pilgrimage-lth-forum%E2%80%99s-gary-wiviott-88592