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DINING Easter brunch options, Baconfest, Dough Bros chef
Special to the online edition of Windy City Times
by Andrew Davis, Windy City Times

This article shared 879 times since Tue Mar 27, 2018
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—Spiaggia, 980 N. Michigan Ave., will have one of its rare brunch openings on Easter Sunday, April 1, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Chef/Partner Tony Mantuano, and Executive Chef and Top Chef Season 15 winner Joe Flamm have put together a four-course shared and individual brunch menu, inspired by the flavors and traditions of Sardinia. For $65 per person, guests will enjoy a frittata with asparagus, sausage and ricotta; culurgiones ( Sardinian ravioli ) with fava beans, pecorino and ricotta; choice of roasted lamb with fregola and roasted pepper pesto, or swordfish with fennel, carrots, blood orange, Castelvetrano olives and almond; and artichokes with fonduta and bottarga. The meal will conclude with the desserts known as seadas. RSVP at

—The Florentine, 151 W. Adams St. ( in the J.W. Marriott hotel ), will serve Easter brunch ( $75 per person and $25 per child age 12 and younger ) at 10 a.m.-3 p.m. The restaurant will have antipasti such as a raw bar as well as meat and cheese; breakfast items such as almond brioche French toast, bagel and lox, and made-to-order omelets; and lunch offerings such as Italian cobb salad, fried chicken, housemade seasonal pasta and a carving station. The Florentine also will serve a la carte breakfast service from 6:30 a.m. until 10 a.m. and regular dinner service from 5 p.m. until 9 p.m. on Easter. Visit .

—Benny's Chop House, 444 N. Wabash Ave., will offer lunch and dinner specials April 1 at 12-9 p.m. Highlights include 100% USDA Prime Traditional and dry-aged steaks, Japanese Tajima Kobe Beef Tenderloin, whole Dover sole and Alaskan king crab legs. There will also be a three-ounce USDA prime kid's filet and grilled cheddar cheese. Among the desserts will be hot cross buns, carrot cake, milk chocolate s'mores cheesecake and banana cream pie. See .

—City Mouse ( in the Ace Hotel at 311 N. Morgan St. ) will have Easter Sunday brunch on April 1 at 7 a.m.-3 p.m. Easter brunch will feature such specials as the lobster cakes florentine with soft-boiled eggs and creole mustard butter ( $18 ) and off-menu carrot cake old-fashioned doughnuts ( $4 ). Easter dinner follows from at 5:30-11 p.m., with signature menu favorites along with the special Cumin and chile-dusted lamb rack ( $25 ) with roasted spring radishes and green onions, and a carrot fudge cake ( $9 ) with macadamia nuts and carrot ice cream. See .

—Eden, a West Lake District's destination for new American dining with Mediterranean touches located at 1748 W. Lake St., invites families for Easter Sunday Brunch. Chef/Partner Devon Quinn presents a brunch menu with items such as grilled skirt steak & eggs, quinoa cakes, housemade granola and grilled avocado eggs Benedict, and homemade sweets like biscuits with honey butter, and doughnuts. Drinks include Bloody Marys, mimosas and bellinis. See .

—Skokie's Libertad, 7931 Lincoln Ave., will have options available both Saturday and Sunday of Easter weekend. They include huevos al horno ( $13; asparagus, wild mushrooms, serrano peppers, queso fresco ), pozole de pollo ( $13; hominy, poached egg, acompanamientos tradicionales ), Pierna de Jamon ( $16; four-chile adobo, achiote rice, pineapple ) and others. See .

—Italian spot 312 Chicago, 136 N. LaSalle St., will be offering complimentary black truffle deviled eggs for guests this Easter Sunday, April 1. In addition to the deviled eggs, Executive Chef Luca Corazzina will be featuring fish and pasta specials all day. Reservations are encouraged but not required; visit

—Winnetka's Restaurant Michel, 64 Green Bay Rd., will serve Easter brunch 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. ( There will also be dinner at 4-8 p.m. ) There will be duo of spring pea souffle & "cappuccino"; chilled jumbo lump crab and warm crab cake, roasted garlic and parsnip puree, sweet pea sauce; French rolled omelet with a selection of fillings, three strips of bacon, toasted brioche, crisp potato gateau; and chocolate dacquoise bombe with creme anglaise, among other offerings. Admission is $56 each ( and $28 for children under 10 ); call 847-441-3100.

—The Hilton Chicago/Oak Brook Hills Resort has announced the return of its Easter brunch in the Grand Ballroom. On Sunday, April 1, two seatings ( 11:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. ) will feature a chef-driven buffet, a petting zoo, a children's crafts area and a visit from the Easter Bunny. Tickets for the affair are at

—Chef Dominique Tougne will host a special Easter brunch at Chez Moi, 2100 N. Halsted St., on Sunday, April 1, at 10:30 a.m.-3 p.m. The three-course prix fixe meal will be $34 per person and $14 for children under 10; also, there will be bottomless mimosas for $15 per person. A few of the Easter menu items will include French onion soup; pan-seared salmon with sauteed spinach and hollandaise sauce; cassoulet toulousain with white beans, lamb, duck and sausage; and molten cake. See .

—NoMI Kitchen at Park Hyatt Chicago, 800 N. Michigan Ave., will celebrate Easter with an all-day affair ( 9 a.m.-5 p.m. ). Ten stations will offer everything from breakfast and brunch favorites, to a carving station, to shellfish and sushi with dishes like roasted leg of lamb, grilled octopus soba, whole roasted chicken, duck confit salad and smoked cheddar cavatappi; there will also be an extensive selection of sweets from Jean Banchet-nominated Executive Pastry Chef Greg Mosko. The cost is $165/person; visit or call 312-335-1234.

—Celebrate a delicious Easter Sunday with family and friends at Northbrook's Prairie Grass Cafe, 601 Skokie Blvd. Easter Brunch, April 1, will be served buffet style at 10 a.m.-1:30 p.m; the price is $51 for adults and $18 for children 10 and younger. See .

—Oak Brook spot Perry's Steakhouse & Grille, 5 Oakbrook Ct., will open early at 11 a.m. on Easter Sunday, serving its dinner menu throughout the day and evening. In addition, Perry's will be offering a special Sunday three-course meal from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. for $34.95 a person. The special Easter menu consists of a three-course menu: a salad, Perry's Famous Pork Chop and the dessert trio. RSVP by calling 630-571-1808.

—River Roast, 315 N. LaSalle St., will serve Easter brunch 10 a.m.-3 p.m. The cost $55/person, $18 for kids 5-12, and free for kids under 5. Items will include glazed ham with fruit gastrique; mashed potatoes with roasted garlic; charred cauliflower with lemon and parmesan; lLocal beets with candied pecans, goat cheese and balsamic; whole cedar-plank salmon; and key lime pie and mini-carrot cakes, among other items. RSVP at 312-822-0100.

—The Chicago Athletic Association hotel, 12 S. Michigan Ave., will host "A Peter Cottontail Easter Affair" in its White City Ballroom on April 1, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. With a traditional culinary program from Executive Chef Christian Ragano and Banquet Chef Josh Miyake, menu items include omelets, cheese and charcuterie, smoked salmon and shrimp cocktail as well as a carving station and more brunch favorites. In addition to eats, guests can indulge in the bottomless Bloody Mary or mimosa bar. This brunch costs $100 per adult ( including a glass of rose ) and $45 per child ( complimentary for children under 5 ); see .

—This year for Easter, Maple & Ash, 8 W. Maple St., invites guests to a special Easter Brunch featuring Maple & Ash staples and a few surprises. There will be Executive Chef Danny Grant's slow-roasted lamb along with fire roasted seafood towers, chef-manned pancake stations, carving stations, an Easter sweets table and bottomless bubbles. Sunday Brunch at Maple & Ash is 10 a.m.-2 p.m. and Easter Brunch is priced at $90 per person, with the option to add unlimited bubbles for an additional $25. Call 312-944-8888 to RSVP.

—Bernie's Lunch & Supper, 660 N. Orleans St., will host its "Mixology Monday" event on Monday, April 2, 6:30-8:30 p.m. For $45 each, guests will be able to craft and enjoy three Tromba Tequila cocktails with the help of Bernie's bar manager and staff. Space is limited and tickets must be purchased online in advance at

—In celebration of Iceland's centennial, Iceland Naturally invites Chicagoans to Taste of Iceland. Returning for its third year, Taste of Iceland is back for eagerly awaiting locals with a four-day program throughout the city taking place Thursday, April 5-Sunday, April 8. Venues will include Baptiste & Bottle, The Dawson, Martrys, Marshall's Landing and even the movie venue The Music Box Theatre. See .

—Baconfest Chicago—a walk-around tasting event featuring creative bacon dishes from local chefs—will take place April 6-7 at the UIC Forum, 725 W. Roosevelt Blvd. Since 2009, Baconfest has raised more than $400,000 enabling partners like the Greater Chicago Food Depository to distribute more than 1.2 million meals to hungry people in the area. Just a few of the restaurants that will be represented this year include Bar Roma, Candyality, Chop Shop, Wrigley BBQ, PR Italian Bistro, Old Town Social, fourteensixteen and Honey Butter Fried Chicken. See for tickets for more info.

—With an all-star cast of chefs who specialize in whole animal cooking paired with farmers responsibly raising heritage breed pigs, Cochon555 returns to Chicago on Sunday, April 8, 4-7:30 p.m. The all-inclusive feast hosted by the Hilton Chicago Hotel, 720 S. Michigan Ave., will feature a hundred-plus prominent chefs, farmers, sommeliers, distillers, brewers and barkeeps. This year, competing chefs include Mario Garcia of Kitty O'Sheas, Cory Morris of Boleo at the Kimpton Gray Hotel, Ryan Burns of The Blanchard, Andres Padilla of Topolobampo and Carlos Gaytan of Mexique. For tickets ( $130-$200 each ), visit .

—Anthony Scardino, A.K.A Professor Pizza, has joined Dough Bros, 400 N. State St., as head chef. Scardino specializes in unique styles of pizza, including "Grandma," Sicilian and New York styles. He has participated in numerous culinary events, such as the International Pizza Expo and the Caputo Cup.

—Pork & Mindy's hosted a "Pig Candy" Launch at Mariano's New City location, 1500 N. Clybourn Ave., on March 20. Among those who attended were Pork & Mindy Executive Chef Jeff Mauro and All-Star athlete Bo Jackson. Pig Candy is candied bacon dusted in brown sugar and slow-smoked.

—The Up Room, ascended on the 13th floor of the Robey Chicago, has a new drink: The Root of All Evil. It's a bottled cocktail made with bourbon, rum, cynar, 11th Orchard Birch bitters and sarsaparilla bitters, with an option to add housemade vanilla ice cream to create a boozy root-beer float.

—George Kovach—lead pastry chef at Michelin-Starred Band of Bohemia, 4710 N. Ravenswood Ave.—has crafted a foie gras ice-cream sandwich ( $15 ). It consists of foie gras, yeast, rye, cocoa and homemade sprinkles, the flavors of which include beet, spirulina, vanilla honey, passion fruit, charcoal and carrot. See .

—Publican Anker, 1576 N. Milwaukee Ave., has introduced a twist to a comfort food classic, as the fried-chicken sandwich at Publican Anker features crispy chicken drizzled with Paul Kahan's spiced Indian honey sauce. Toppings include fresh cucumber slaw and a creamy methi ranch, made from scratch with fenugreek leaves and ranch sauce. The sandwich is available daily for $14, and it's now also on delivery food service Doordash.

—Commonwealth Tavern, 2000 W. Roscoe St., will broadcast the Cubs home opener on Monday, April 9, at 1:20 p.m. Specials will include $5 Chicago beers ( local Chicago beer only ), $5 soft pretzels and a $6 corn dog with fries. For guests' sports viewing pleasure, there are 12 TVs including a 70-inch plasma.

—Roanoke, 135 W. Madison St., will start its daily happy hour early beginning at 1:20 p.m. for the Chicago Cubs opener. The happy-hour menu is available in the bar area only until 6:30 p.m. Featured specials will include half-price select bottles of wine and a $16 premium beer and burger combo. The game will be shown on all five TVs in the bar area and 11 TVs in the upstairs lounge.

—4 Star Restaurant Group will open its second Smoke Daddy restaurant at Hickory Street Capital's Hotel Zachary, 3630 N. Clark St., on Monday, April 9, to coincide with the Chicago Cubs home opener. The two-level restaurant includes a 1,500-square-foot terrace that allows guests to view all of the excitement at The Park at Wrigley. ( Some of the other eateries at the hotel will include Mordecai, Westtown Bakery + Tap, and Jeni's. )

—Brindille, 534 N. Clark St., will offer a five-course burgundy wine dinner prepared by Chef Carrie Nahabedian on Tuesday, April 10, at 7 p.m., with a 6:30 p.m. reception. The cost is $150/person ( all-inclusive ); call 312-595-1616.

—Heartland Cafe, 7000 N. Glenwood Ave., has a new( ish ) chef. Sean Sanders, who has been at the cafe for three months, has worked at Green Dolphin Street, Bin 36 and Hotel Chicago. Also, he applied his experience in New Zealand at to open Browntrout, a Michelin Bib Gourmand-rated spot that was located at 4111 N. Lincoln Ave.

—Kizuki, 1482 N. Milwaukee Ave., will offer 10 of its chicken wings for $10 for the Cubs opener. The housemade wings are marinated and crispy, and guests can choose from either a honey citrus or Tokyo buffalo sauce. The wings will be available for dine-in or delivery.

—The first-ever Halal lifestyle festival in America, "I Heart Halal," will showcase the range of contemporary U.S. halal at Navy Pier, Festival Hall A, Friday, April 13-15. This new three-day festival will provide a welcoming space for anyone interested in Halal living embraced by U.S. Muslim consumers. See .

—On Tuesday, April 17, at 6 p.m., the team behind Logan Square's Michelin Bib Gourmand restaurant Quiote are headed to the West Loop for a one-night collaboration dinner at James Beard Award-winning Blackbird, 619 W. Randolph St. Quiote Chef/Owner Dan Salls and Chef de Cuisine Ross Henke, along with Blackbird Chef de Cuisine Ryan Pfeiffer, Pastry Chef Nicole Guini and former Blackbird Pastry Chef Dana Cree are teaming to create a nine-course tasting menu capturing the flavors of Mexico. This exclusive dinner is $125 per person ( inclusive of tax and gratuity ), with an optional beverage pairing for $35; see "Quiote Meets Blackbird: A Pop-Up Dinner Collaboration" at .

—Cornerstone Restaurant Group will celebrate Chef Bill Kim's debut cookbook, Korean BBQ: Master Your Grill in Seven Sauces, on Tuesday, April 17, 6-9 p.m., at bellyQ, 1400 W. Randolph St. The event will feature six guest chefs who will head grill stations fashioned after food stalls, with each chef taking on a recipe from the book. Tickets are $50 each, and will include food, a signed copy of Korean BBQ and a Suntory Toki drink; visit

—Signature '18 at the National Restaurant Association Restaurant, Hotel-Motel Show—a modern take on the traditional keynote—welcomes 66th Secretary of State Dr. Condoleezza Rice for a discussion with National Restaurant Association President/CEO Dawn Sweeney. The National Restaurant Association Restaurant, Hotel-Motel Show runs May 19-22 at McCormick Place. For more information about this year's Show, visit

—Long Grove's Chocolate Fest will take place May 18-20 at 308 Old McHenry Rd., Long Grove, Illinois. According to a press release, "While children roam the village in search of chocolate treasures during the famed Chocolate Scavenger Hunt, local vendors on cobble-stone streets wheel out chocolate-infused creations, everything from chocolate pudding pie pops to burgers lathered in BBQ chocolate sauce." See .

Send items to, or follow on Twitter @Azygous60610 or on Instagram at azygous333.

This article shared 879 times since Tue Mar 27, 2018
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