Come for the Champagne, Stay for the Uni

Chicago has a lot of steakhouses, but the opening of the Esquire Champagne Room at Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steakhouse on Oak Street makes it the only steakhouse in the city with a separate, Champagne and caviar-focused lounge. And in contrast to most spots specializing in sips and nibbles, the Esquire Champagne Room is secluded... Read more »

What Pairs Well With Roquefort?

What pairs well with Roquefort? The question nagged at Amy Morton, owner of Found Kitchen and Social House in Evanston, as she worked on the menu for the restaurant’s innovative, 8-course, cheese degustation on March 1. When the announcement of the event was sent via e-blast to the people on the restaurant’s mailing list, Morton... Read more »

Fresher Than Fresh

Matt Mixter was ahead of the curve when he opened Wixter Market in Wicker Park. With many consumers convinced nothing could be “fresher than fresh,” he limited his inventory to top quality frozen fish and premium conservas (canned seafood). Three years later, that same inventory is fueling his recently launched wholesale and online businesses. Mixter... Read more »
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Nova Scotia Cookery: Heritage Recipes Updated

For many Americans, Canada is all about Toronto, Montreal, hockey, and snow. Mention the Maritimes, a region east of Quebec that includes the provinces of Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and New Brunswick, and they really draw a blank. “Nova Scotia Cookery, Then & Now: Modern Interpretations of Heritage Recipes” explores the province’s culinary tradition,... Read more »

Have Camera, Will Shoot #1

After complaining time and again about people taking pictures of their food, I realized I’m guilty of the same offense. And while I write about food all the time, I post pictures only when they’re part of a story. A good photo of a good dish deserves a better fate. So, with a thank you... Read more »

Burgers to Banana Splits

Check out the burgers-to-banana splits menu at Maillard Tavern, Tony Priolo and and Ciro Longobardo’s new restaurant, and odds are, you’ll find a lot of your favorite dishes on it. According to chef Tony Priolo, that’s not an accident. “Nothing beats a burger,” Priolo observes. “It’s been a favorite ever since a creative cook sandwiched... Read more »

Airline Food: An Update

Remember airline food? You know, the stuff airlines used to routinely feed you when you were cruising at 35,000 feet and didn’t have a lot of options. Well, if you’re bothered by change, I have some good news. Airline food has neither disappeared nor changed. It has been updated, however. The “Hot Wrap” served on... Read more »

Pokeworks: A Hot Trend for a Cold Day

Envision bowls of rice strewn with two kinds of sushi-grade tuna or a salad topped with shrimp, scallops, diced mango and a topknot of shredded nori. Sound good? Then head to Pokeworks (79 E. Madison, 312.866.0261), a fast casual newcomer that brings a taste of Hawaii to a city poised for falling temperatures and single... Read more »

"The Complete Slow Cooker"

“The Complete Slow Cooker” The Editors at America’s Test Kitchen, $29.95 I’m definitely a fan of America’s Test Kitchen’s cookbooks. Whatever the format, the editors offer interesting, easy-to-follow recipes that deliver good results every time you use them. “Why This Recipe Works,” an explanatory paragraph that precedes every recipe, is also a plus. The newest... Read more »

The Best Holiday

I love Thanksgiving. It’s an “everyone” holiday with a great menu and no “musts.” Getting everything cooked and served can be daunting for the hosts, but it doesn’t have to be. Thanksgiving dinner is typically a potluck, which works especially well for this holiday. According to the game plan, everyone brings something, and everyone tells... Read more »