Chicago Chefs Gather for Japan
Monday night is usually chefs’ night off. But this week, a flock of Chicago’s top chefs worked on their day off to support Japan.
There was so much fire power in the kitchen, and on the restaurant floor, that one guest called it “a meal cooked by the 1927 Yankees.”
The Chicago benefit dinner took place at Takashi, a modern Asian restaurant in Chicago’s Bucktown neighborhood. It is owned by Takashi Yagihashi, a Japanese native who Detroiters will remember as the executive chef at Tribute. Within hours of hearing about the March 11 earthquake and tsunami, Takashi decided to hold a benefit dinner.
The response to Yagihashi’s invitation was immediate. Within five days, chefs from across the city across the city had signed up to offer their skills for the benefit, called Heal Japan, Yagihashi said.
Ties between Japan and the Changing Gears region run particularly deep. As we reported last month, more than 160,000 people across Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan and Ohio work for Japanese companies. And, as Japan rebuilds itself, people from across the region are stepping up to provide assistance. Students at the University of Michigan recently raised $20,000 in their own benefit.
The menu included house cured sardines, prepared by Mantuano; miso-glazed squab, made by Kahan; Washugyu beef, grilled by Hogan; and a dessert of ginger creme glacee and a lychee baba, prepared by Sebastien Canonne of the French Pastry School.
Benefits for Japan are continuing around Chicago. Check out a list here.