Bar Toma, 110 E. Pearson St., is kicking off its patio season with an Earth Day party on Friday, April 22. Beginning at 4 p,m,, guests can dine al fresco and enjoy $1 off local craft beers.
Berwyn's Autre Monde Cafe and Spirits, 6727 W. Roosevelt Rd., celebrates its five-year anniversary with a complete refreshcomplete with updated decor, a revamped menu design, new dishes and a new a cocktail, beer and wine program. The new menu by Executive Chefs Dan Pancake and Beth Partridge and Chef de Cuisine Andrew Kerns features time-tested favorites with new dishes that highlight the Mediterranean region. See AutreMondeCafe.net .
Jake Melnick's Corner Tap is featuring new beer cocktails from Beverage Director Emilie Sharboneau. Items include the Hop-a-Rhinia ( cachaca with muddled lime, sugar and Half Acre Daisy Cutter ), Bloody Hell ( Jake Melnick's housemade XXX Bloody Mary mix topped with Surly Hell Lager and served with a salt-and-pepper rim ) and PranQ-mosa ( North Coast Brewing's Pranqster Belgian style golden ale with fresh orange juice ). See JakeMelnicks.com .
An artistic rendering of Space Architects + Planners' redesigned Maggie Daley Park restaurant was released, according to Curbed Chicago. If the city approves it, the glass-walled eatery is expected to open sometime next year. The downsized 8,000-square-foot plan will be heard before the Chicago Plan Commission on Thursday, April 21, and will be open to the public. Commission meetings are held on the third Thursday of every month, usually at City Hall, 121 N. LaSalle St., in City Council chambers.
Gioco, 1312 S. Wabash Ave., has a new executive chef, Jim Kilberg, and a new menu. Kilberg is back at Gioco, where he spent three years as a sous chef before traveling back to Italy. Menu highlights include grilled baby octopus; braised duck with housemade pappardelle; and linguini with clams, shrimp and calamari. See GiocoChicago.com .
The spring pre-sale for the 9th annual Bon Appetit presents Chicago Gourmet has begun at ChicagoGourmet.org . While supplies last, tickets will be available at $148 per person, per day, or $250 per person for a weekend pass. ( Normally, prices are $185 per person per day, or $295 for a weekend pass. ) The event will be Sept. 24-25 at Millennium Park.
For Passover ( April 22-23 ), Joe's Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab will offer a menu with gefilte fish with red beet horseradish, bibb lettuce and chive salad with chopped liver as well as Suzy Friedman's vegetarian chopped liver and matzo-ball soup. For a full list of Lettuce Entertain You Passover listings, visit http://www.leye.com/passover-2016.
Schaumburg's Tokio Pub, 1900 E. Higgins Rd., is hosting a four-course dinner with beer pairings from Michigan's Bell's Brewery on Monday, April 25. Culinary offerings will include crawfish Scotch egg, Buffalo mozzarella, Thai-style porchetta and twinkie "beeramisu." Costing $45 per guest ( tax and gratuity not included ), the dinner will begin with check-in at 6:30 p.m. and the first course at 7 p.m. Reservations are required; call 847-278-5181.
Seven Lions, 130 S. Michigan Ave., and Master Sommelier Alpana Singh are hosting their first-ever Wednesday Wine Down: Spring Fling on Wed., April 27, at 6-7:30 p.m. Guests will enjoy a selection of light appetizers and canapes from Executive Chef Patrick Russ and experience six spring wines. Tickets are $24 each, including tax and gratuity; see http://seven-lions.ticketleap.com/spring-fling-wine-tasting/details.
The Chicago Cocktail Social will take place Thursday, April 28, at Galleria Marchetti, 825 W. Erie St., 6-10 p.m. Attendees will sample drinks from almost 20 bars, including The Violet Hour, Broken Shaker, Analogue, The Duck Inn, Sable and Punch House, among others. Tickets are $40 each; visit http://www.greencurtainevents.com/chicago-cocktail-social/.
Gene & Georgetti, 500 N. Franklin St., announced its first-ever happy hour by launching a prime-time bar menu available MondayFrida, 4-6 p.m. Along with Chicago's classic menu of cocktails, spirits and fine wines, guests can enjoy menu items such as crab-cake sandwiches, pigs in a blanket, pizza-bread margherita, filet Bearnaise, mac 'n cheese and other items. Visit GeneAndGeorgetti.com or call 312-527-3718.
Izakaya Mita, 1960 N. Damen Ave., is hosting a Kushi-Age Sake Tasting on Thursday, April 21, 6-9 p.m., featuring the expertise of special guest Monica Samuels, national sake sales manager for Vine Connections. Dishes will include Tonkatsu to Tamanegi Katsu-age ( pork cutlet and onion, skewered, breaded in panko ) and Sunagimo Kara-age ( chicken gizzard in kara-age breading ), among others. In addition, there will be a sake flight. The dinner costs $40 ( exclusive of tax and tip ); call 773-799-8677.
Football fans are invited to visit Sweetwater Tavern and Grille, 225 N. Michigan Ave., for its Draft Party on Thursday, April 28. All day long, guests can enjoy specialty offerings including the Monster of the Midway Burger. Also, there will be a draft viewing and video DJ at 7 p.m. See www.sweetwatertavernandgrille.com .
Mezcaleria Las FloresChicago's first mezcaleria, created by Rick Bayless' former mixology chief Jay Schroeder and chef/owner of Johnny's Grill, Sarah Jordanis now open at 3149 W. Logan Blvd. Highlighting a few different Oaxacan mezcales as well as bacanora from Sonora, sotol from Chihuahua and raicilla from the south of Jalisco, guests can navigate Schroeder's seven-cocktail opening menu by each drink's Fresh, Smoky and Adventurous qualities. Mezcaleria Las Flores guests will also be able to dine with menu items from Johnny's Grill.
Bistronomic, 840 N. Wabash Ave., will offer a seasonal Passover menu in anticipation of the Jewish holiday. The menu is available beginning the evening of Friday, April 22, through Saturday, April 30, starting at 5 p.m. nightly; the price is $39 for adults and $19 for children 10 years of age and under. Items include warm asparagus salad or housemade chicken-liver mousse; Faroe Island salmon or glazed beef shortribs; and crunchy bittersweet chocolate bars or poached spiced pear. See Bistronomic.net .
The 6th Annual Pastoral Artisan Producer Festival ( APF ), presented by The Specialty Food Association, will take place Saturday, April 30, 11 a.m.-3 p.m., at the Chicago French Market, 131 N. Clinton St. This free event, created by Pastoral Artisan Cheese, Bread & Wine, showcases the talents of local, national and international producers of high quality artisan foods and beverages. APF attendees can sample small-batch food, beer, wine and spirits from nearly 100 culinary artisans. Proceeds from this event will benefit Purple Asparagus and the Daphne Zepos Teaching Award, a scholarship fund for aspiring cheese professionals.
Three Dots and a Dash, 435 N. Clark St., will host its second annual Tiki Luau & Pig Roast on Sunday, May 1, 1-4 p.m. There will be local and national bar talent such as Three Dot's Julian Cox, Sparrow's Peter Vestinos, Pub Royale's Kristina Magro and David Greteman of St. Louis' Taste. See ThreeDotsChicago.com .
Peruvian restaurant Tanta, 118 W. Grand Ave., is launching its new lunch programoffered Monday-Saturday from 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m.on Monday, May 2. Just a few of the dishes include De la Huerta ( mixed field greens, cherry tomatoes, red beets, avocado, shaved radish, with an option of the aji amarillo or yogurt dressing ), Super Soltero ( frisee, kale, peashoots, wheat, chickpeas, choclo, mint, queso fresco, cucumber, onions, parsley and cilantro ), Caprese salad and Pan con Chicharron ( crispy pork belly, sweet potato and mint criolla, on a French roll ). Also, the restaurant plans to offer a "Peruvian Power Lunch" option, featuring a selection of prix fixe dishes. See TantaChicago.com .
Embeya, 564 W. Randolph St., is inviting guests on a new culinary excursion: "A Journey Through Asia." The first stop on the journey is Thailand, starting Monday, May 2. Chef Mike Sheerin's three-course tasting menu is $39featuring his favorite dishes on the menu and available for dinner Monday-Fridayand there is the three-course business lunch for $25. Some of the Thai choices include steamed mussels, Northern tumeric pork sausage, spring chicken satay, grilled snapper and warm coconut rice. See Embeya.com .
At RPM Steak, 66 W. Kinzie St., there will be a butcher demo and dinner with Italian butcher Dario Cecchini on Thursday, May 4, at 7 p.m. Bringing along his cooks and own arsenal of ingredients, Cecchini will demonstrate the techniques of properly breaking down beef and pork and present guests with a multi-course dinner including his Florentine steaks accompanied by wines from two Italian wineries, Gaja and Il Poggione. Reservations are $265 per person ( plus tax; gratuity not included ) and can be reserved at RPMRestaurants.com .
For Cinco de Mayo, Commonwealth Tavern, 2000 W. Roscoe St., will offer $6 margaritas, $6 Mexican Mules and $5 Dos Equis tallboys. Guests can pair their beverages with Commonwealth's queso fundido ( roasted poblano, chorizo and Chihuahua cheese, served with tortillas, $10 ). See CommonwealthChicago.com .
State and Lake Chicago Tavern at theWit, 201 N. State St., will host a Kentucky Derby celebration on Saturday, May 7, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. There will be food and drink specials as well as prizes for those who choose to sport appropriate Derby Day attire. Festivities include food specials such as crispy chicken thighs with mustard slaw, bourbon honey and pepper vinegar ( $11 ). Drink specials will include Large Format Mint Juleps ( $100 ) and Mint Julep ( $12 ). Guests are encouraged to enter the Best Dressed Instagram Contest for a chance to wine a $150 Wit gift card.
Clark Street Dog Bar, 3040 N. Clark St., will offer a Kentucky Derby special on Saturday, May 7. There will be $7 Maker's Mark mint juleps. The entire food menu will also be available, with items like the Italian beef sandwich, pizza puffs and chili cheese fries. See ClarkStDog.com .
At Tavern on Little Fort, 4128 N. Lincoln Ave., guests will enjoy $7 Buffalo Trace Mint Juleps and $6 Kentucky Mules ( Moscow Mule with bourbon ) on Saturday, May 7. Large groups are invited to book parties in the beer garden, which accommodates up to 68 guests. See LittleFortTavern.com .
This Mother's Day, French-inspired patisserie Vanille is celebrating mom with a first-of-its-kind photo contest. Through Sunday, May 8, mothers and children of all ages who stop by one of Vanille's three Chicago locations can snap a photo of themselves enjoying any of Vanille's artisanal specialties for the chance to win an Afternoon Tea party for 10 people inside the luxurious Vanille Salon located at the Lincoln Park location, 2108 N. Clark St. ( To enter the Mom, Me & Vanille Photo Contest, guests need to post their photo on Facebook or Instagram using #MomMeVanille. They must also tag Vanille at @VanilleChicago on Instagram or "Vanille Patisserie" on Facebook. ) Visit VanillePatisserie.com .
At 312 Chicago, 136 N. LaSalle St., Chef Luca Corazzina and his mother will be in the kitchen for Mother's Day brunch, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. She will be delivering complimentary slices of her homemade pasta to all moms who join them for brunch. Also, the regular brunch menu will also be served along with specials. Reservations can be made at312chicago.com or 312-696-2420.
Dolce Italian, 127 W. Huron St., celebrates mom with its special Mother's Day Brunch menu featuring a distinctive Italian twist. Items include house poached tuna and shrimp with hearts of romaine, fingerling potatoes, roasted pepper, baby green beans, and asparagus; and piccolo filet mignon, with poached eggs, sea salt ciabatta crostini, asparagus and Barolo sauce. For reservations, call 312-754-0700 or visit http://www.dolceitalianrestaurant.com/#!chicago/ctiu.
On Sunday, May 8, at 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m., the three-course Mother's Day Brunch Menu will be available at Bistronomic, 840 N. Wabash St. The price is $42 for adults and $20 for children 10 and under. Some of the choices include asparagus veloute, short-stack pancakes, deviled eggs, eggs Benedict, house-cured duck confit, Belgian waffles, baked Alaska and crispy hazelnut bars. ( Bottomless mimosas are an additional $16.95. ) Visit Bistronomic.net .
Howells & Hood, 435 N. Michigan Ave., is offering a gourmet Mother's Day for $39 per person at 9 a.m.-3 p.m.; call 312-262-5310. Also, River Roast, 315 N. LaSalle St., is offering a brunch package for four ( $140 excluding tax and gratuity ), including favorites like the whole roast chicken, a small Hogan's charcuterie board, biscuits & gravy, Hogan's peas and a hot apple crisp for dessert; call 312-822-0100.
Riva Crab House on Navy Pier, 700 E. Grand Ave., will host its Mother's Day brunch buffet on Sunday, May 8. Chef Luigi Garcia will showcase an omelet station, carving station, raw bar, fresh fruit buffet and a dessert display. See RivaNavyPier.com .
On Sunday, May 8, Devon Seafood Grill, 39 E. Chicago Ave.,¯is offering a special Mother's Day Brunch available from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and a three-course prix fixe dinner menu available at 4-9 p.m. Devon Seafood Grill's Mother's Day Brunch Buffet costs $38 for adults and $17 for children ages 4-12; children under 4 eat free. The Mother's Day prix fixe menu costs $45. Call 312-440-8660 or visit¯www.devonseafood.com .¯
On Wed., May 11, The Boarding House's all-female team ( Chef Tanya Baker, Pastry Chef Julia Fitting and owner/proprietor Alpana Singh ) gets bigger for a one-night-only collaborative dinner featuring the culinary talents of Zoe Schor ( of the soon-to-be Split-Rail ) and Diana Davila ( most recently of Cantina 1910 and in the process of opening her own restaurant ). The dinner begins at 6:30 p.m., and tickets to the exclusive event are $145. See http://theboardinghouse.ticketleap.com/wonder-women-in-whites/details.
City Lit Theatre, is hosting its annual spring tea Saturday, May 21, at 2 p.m. at the Edgewater Beach Cafe, 5545 N. Sheridan Rd. The tea will feature a high tea, a silent auction and a signature reading of The Nightingale and the Rose, by Oscar Wilde. Tickets are $35 for one person and $55 for two; visit http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2532159.
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