Spring is in the air, with a whole week of market openings and festivals, as well as the fascinating Smart Museum Symposium: Of Hospitality. The Friday dinner is sold out but I’ll be there and will report back. In the meantime, happy May Day and Cinco de Mayo this week!
Monday, April 30
Watch chef Paul Kahan make a blood mortadella, ramps, and squid salad—and a pork belly, chorizo, and clams entrée here—as an amuse-yeux to Fear No ART’s monthly Dinner Party the Mayne Stage. Kahan’s food will be paired with Brewery Ommegang beer.
Tuesday, May 1
Celebrate May Day and University of Illinois Chicago workers at Re-Thinking Soup, the free weekly soup and bread lunch program at the Hull-House Kitchen. “Listen to a selection of significant moments in U.S. labor history, curated from artists Deborah Strattman and Steve Badgett’s installation ‘Polygonal Address System.‘” And as always, “eat delicious, healthy soup” with bread provided by Nicole’s Crackers.
The inaugural Ground Up Chicago farmers market at Browntrout, with “child-friendly chef demos and adult-friendly specialty cocktails” kicks off the new “Chicago chef collective committed to building a local and sustainable farmer-chef connection through education, access, and support.”
The Growing Home 10th birthday party and annual benefit at the Notebaert Nature Museum features Honey Butter Fried Chicken, Goose Island Beer, Candid Wines, and much, much more—including Steve James, director of the award-winning film The Interrupters.
Chicago’s Culinary Crossroads launches as “[r]estaurants throughout Chicagoland present special tasting menus, featured items or desserts, cocktails, or beers inspired by the cuisines of the NATO nations. In addition, internationally renowned chefs from some of the NATO nations will be paired with participating restaurants to collaborate on menus that truly reflect their nation’s cuisines…And, at each restaurant, diners can collect “passport” codes that may be entered online to win a VIP weekend for two to Chicago Gourmet.”
Thursday, May 3
The first Meet the Market of the year opens at Balena, hosted by the Green City Market Junior Board. “Both food and drink will feature the seasonal produce of Ellis Family Farms. The Death’s Door Spirits cocktails sales benefit the Green City Market.
Drink free beer as art again at “The Act of Drinking Beer with Friends is the Highest Form of Art” within the exhibition Feast: Radical Hospitality in Contemporary Art at the Smart Museum of Art. “[G]uest bartenders will be poets and teaching artists from Young Chicago Authors.”
Friday, May 4
The Festival Cinco de Mayo in Little Village is one of the “biggest Mexican festivals in the Midwest…this third annual gala…will again feature plenty of live music, authentic foods, arts and crafts, activities for families and children, and much more.”
Frau Ingrid demonstrates the classic German seasonal trio of Schnitzel, Spargel (asparagus) and Spaetzle at Dank Haus, the German American Cultural Center. For more information, contact Heidi.
Saturday, May 5
The Green City Market outdoor market opens for the season with a chef demo by Spiaggia’s Top Chef Sarah Grueneberg.
The Smart Museum’s Symposium: Of Hospitality presents a full day of free panel discussions and performances, including the Soup & Bread: Radical Hospitality One Pot at a Time closing reception at the Logan Center. The Friday dinner is full but sign up now for fascinating line-up of speakers and topics, including a Food Truck-o-Rama lunch featuring artist Michael Rakowitz’s food truck as art, Enemy Kitchen.
The two day Green Festival at Navy Pier an organic cooking stage as well as a local, organic food court, and an organic beer and mead garden—a mead garden!
“The editors of Epicurious and Chicago’s top chefs, sommeliers, and mixologists invite you to join…[t]he first-ever Epicurious Entertains Chicago at the Chicago Illuminating Company” with two days of classes, dinner, and a BBQ—each event available à la carte.