Soho House, a private international club geared toward the entertainment industry, will open an outpost in Chicago in a six-story West Loop building that in 1907 was the Chicago Belting Factory. (We learned this back in January.) The move is part of the company's rapid expansion, which includes new Houses in Istanbul, Mumbai and Toronto. The latest news in the pipeline: The Chicago Soho House will have three restaurants open to the public. One will be an outpost of London's Pizza East; another will be a burger place and the third a chicken concept. In addition, members of the club will have access to the bar and kitchen on the glass-enclosed roof. (Other amenities: a rooftop 60-foot pool, 35 guest rooms, a 40-seat screening room and a 12,000-square-foot gym.) Soho House Chicago (113–125 N Green St) is slated to open in spring 2014.
Neon pink and tart might not be the first words you’d associate with a vegetable, but rhubarb transcends the fruit/vegetable barrier. It remains a seasonal favorite of diners and chefs alike, appearing in sweet and savory dishes. We recently listed where to find fresh new takes on this versatile vegetable (including one paired with foie gras!).
Rhubarb fans (rhubarbanites?), we know you’re out there. Share your favorite dishes with us and discover new ones on Foodspotting!
Wondering what Foodspotting is? It's a social network for foodies, where you can find and recommend dishes, not just restaurants. Follow us on Foodspotting and spot your favorite dishes, or follow our Foodspotting guides, including Sweet Scoops and Brunch Drinks.
Violet Hour impresario Toby Maloney was back in town recently to help launch Captain Morgan Black Spiced Rum, a pleasant rum with chocolate notes, in an event space tucked away atop the Public Hotel. "Drink it while it's still laughing at you," Maloney says during this entertaining, though badly lit (my apologies for the quality of the iPhone video), demonstration of how to make a sour from scratch. Good advice at the start of a holiday weekend.
Print! It's not dead! Here are the food and drink stories from the print version of TOC, which hits newstands today and tomorrow:
39 New Spots to Eat and Drink Outdoors
Stumped on where to eat outdoors on a cool summer night? Well don't blame us. We found 39 new rooftops, gardens, backyards and waterfront locales.
Alfresco Pocket Guide
You know when you say whiney things like “There’s nowhere to eat outsiiiiiide”? That's annoying. Clip out this pocket guide and stop it.
Urban Market | Best lunch in the Loop?
We spent a few hours eating our way through Urban Market, the food court in the basement of the Chase Tower. What? There’s a food court in the basement of the Chase Tower? Yes, and Rick Bayless lives there. Kind of.
David Tamarkin reviews Andersonville’s latest upscale upstart. The prices are steep, the food is salty and basically Tamarkin just wants In Fine Spirits back.
Bar food, dinner food…it’s all brunch food now. We stuffed our faces at Small Bar and also at Urban Union, where brunch is no longer a separately defined category.
Beer Garden Guide 2012
Beer. Outside. While snacking. Or riding mechanical bulls. Here's a guide.
The Bar Chart
Our weekly (and very opinionated) assessment of where to drink.
Rhubarb! It's out there! Here's where to find it.
Who wants sidewalk seating when you can be perched 27 floors in the air? Yes, beloved rooftop season is upon us, and three of Chicago’s best rooftop venues have updated for summer.
The hotel’s fancy outdoor restaurant overlooking the Chicago River has been revamped for summer 2012. “So Chic” is the new theme that should be noticeable throughout the décor, food and even the staff uniforms. In addition to the new look, the occupancy has increased by 20 percent. If you’re worried about not snagging a seat from the now 196 available, you can reserve The Octagon. For $1800, ten guests can sit around the eight-sided table (dibs on not having to share a side) and enjoy one magnum of Dom Perignon, a specialty cocktail and one extravagant seafood tower. If you’re not feeling fishy, the new dessert menu has “so chic” cakes and a not-for-kids mandarin vanilla float with Combier orange liqueur. 401 N Wabash Ave (312-588-8600). 2:30pm–11:30pm daily.
The Terrace at The Peninsula Chicago
Four floors above street level, the Terrace has a new theme for the season—The Golden Era: Revived. The name refers to 1930s swinging Shanghai, and with Shanghainese music in the background, the new atmosphere will have a fast-paced cosmopolitan feel yet also be glamorous and romantic (daybeds are available to reserve for a $400 food and beverage minimum). A permanent bar is also a new feature, at which you can try the signature cocktail, the Golden Apple, a combo of Absolut Orient Apple and Sauternes with 24-karat gold-leaf flakes. The new lunch menu, created by chef de cuisine Ivan Yuen, includes a variety of dim sum, cold noodles with spicy crab and Asian-inspired salads. So put on sunscreen, reserve a daybed and pretend you’re halfway around the world for a day. 108 E Superior St, 4th Fl (312-573-6695). 11:30am–11pm.
After a spring filled with renovations, one of the best rooftop bars in Chicago has gotten better. With the help of helicopters and cranes, an all-glass retractable roof was installed that allows for ROOF to be a year-round venue. For sports fans, a 6-by-12-foot HDTV is a new feature and because of the previously mentioned new roof, you can watch television rain or shine. For clubbers, a new LED light system and new DJ booth, coming later this summer, will make your nights even more, well, clubby. And all day long on Sundays, DJs will be spinning, dancers will be in swimwear and partiers will be donning free sunglasses and lip balm. That’s quite the Sunday. 201 N State St, 27th Fl (312-239-9502) Mon, Tue 4pm–midnight; Wed, Thu 4pm–2am; Fri, Sat 2pm–2am; Sun noon–10pm.
For 39 new outdoor eating and drinking options, check out this week's Alfresco Issue.
Glazed and Infused, Scott Harris's doughnut shop, opened this morning at 6:30am in two locations: 1553 N Damen Ave in Wicker Park, and 813 W Fulton Mkt in the West Loop. Both openings were met with huge protests by activists who oppose high-fat foods. Just kidding!
Basically, Glazed and Infused is just like Doughnut Vault and Do-Rite Donuts. These are doughnuts by fine-dining chefs (Christine McCabe and Tom Culleeney), mostly served only in the morning. The twist here is that the Wicker Park location will re-open on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights to serve late-night doughnuts from 10:30pm through 1:30am. Which is a brilliant idea, though people like me, who crave doughnuts every day at 3pm, are still pretty much screwed.
Check out the full menu and the convoluted hours after the jump.
Six months of winter, rain and out-of-season tomatoes are finally over, and now we reap our summery rewards. Every May through October, we write about the fresh, seasonal fruits and vegetables with which farmers' markets runneth over, but as the photos here from Foodspotting members attest, they're also packed with great local baked-good vendors. What could make a sunny afternoon of perusing summer produce better than having a freshly baked pastry in each hand? You, too, can follow us on Foodspotting and spot your favorite dishes.
Want to get the full rundown beyond our favorite crêpes and croissants? Check out our complete guide for the city's farmers' markets.
Wondering what Foodspotting is? It's a social network for foodies, where you can find and recommend dishes, not just restaurants. Follow us on Foodspotting and spot your favorite dishes, or follow our Foodspotting guides, including Best Brunch Spots and 100 Best Things We Ate in 2011.
Zina Murray probably didn't think opening a shared-use kitchen would be that hard. After all, Kitchen Chicago had been doing it for a few years, and weren't they successful?
But time and time again, Murray found herself frustrated by the city, who prevented—or at least considerably slowed down—what she was trying to accomplish.
Now, Murray's kitchen, Logan Square Kitchen, will close. But Murray is not going away quietly. Just now, she released a bold statement to the press that it is no exaggeration to call an attack on the city.
Read it after the jump. Discuss it in the comments.
I can count on one hand the number of wine bars that have been anticipated at all in this town, let alone as highly anticipated as RM Champagne Salon. The upscale (though not necessarily expensive, so the owners say) wine spot is a sister spot to Jared Van Camp's Nellcôte, and it was supposed to open by now. But, you know how that goes. The City of Chicago will do anything to keep its residents from some good Champagne.
Soon—a week or two?—RM will indeed open to the public. Until then, enjoy this slideshow of the interior. Make sure you take a good long look—RM has what will likely be one of the most gorgeous patios in the city, so you probably won't actually see the inside of the place until autumn.
Tonight the Bristol holds the first of what will be a series of Chef Dinners—dinners where out-of-town chefs, such as Thomas Keller and Kevin Gillespie, collaborate with Chris Pandel to put out a lavish meal (and usually a book signing, too). The series starts with chef Mourad Lahlou of San Francisco's Aziza. Lahlou was raised in Morocco, but he doesn't feel compelled to serve the same food he ate growing up. In fact, his is perhaps the most progressive Moroccan food served in the country. I called him as he was boarding his plane to Chicago to ask him about the (sad? happy?) state of Moroccan food in the States.