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Dining news: Women's History Month item; Pastoral event
Special to the online edition of Windy City Times
by Andrew Davis, Windy City Times

This article shared 3320 times since Tue Mar 17, 2015
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—In celebration of Women's History Month, Francesca's Restaurant Group pays homage to notable female leaders in the culinary world and beyond with specialty offerings at Francesca's Restaurants, Davanti Enoteca, and Glazed and Infused. For example, Glazed and Infused celebrates the World War II icon Rosie the Riveter with the special "We Can Donut!" doughnut, a play on the iconic "We Can Do It" inspirational poster. Visit .

—The 5th Annual Pastoral Artisan Producer Festival ( APF )—presented by The Specialty Food Association—will take place Saturday, April 25, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. at the Chicago French Market ( 131 N. Clinton St. ), which co-produces the festival with Pastoral. Greg O'Neill & Ken Miller, co-owners/co-founders of Pastoral Artisan Cheese, Bread & Wine, created the APF to showcase the talents of local, national and international producers of high quality artisan foods and beverages.

—Hugo's Frog Bar & Fish House, 1024 N. Rush St., has a new oyster bar. Signature bar items include Hugo's Anastasia Gold caviar ( from farm-raised sturgeon at Evans Fish Farms in Pierson, Florida ), Hugo's Alaskan red king crab and wild-caught Sea of Cortez shrimp cocktail.

—Sports fans take note: In celebration of March Madness, Compass Bar, 433 W. Diversey Pkwy., will feature $20 craft and $15 domestic buckets as well as $6 chicken tenders throughout the tournament. Guests can catch the games on eight TVs throughout the bar. Visit .

—In celebration of the first day of spring and warmer days ahead, JW Marriott Chicago, 151 W. Adams St., invites guests and local Chicagoans to visit the hotel's front desk on Friday, March 20, for a complimentary spring treat. For this year's confection,Executive Chef Michael Reich will create his spring flower shortbread cookies topped with sugared edible flowers, available 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

—Sable Kitchen & Bar and Hotel Palomar, 505 N. State St., are celebrating their fifth-year anniversary and hosting a special party on Tuesday, March 24. The space will be open to the public 5-7 p.m. There will be complimentary hors d'oeuvres ( such as crispy pork-belly BLTs ) and signature craft cocktails, as well as entertainers such as sketch artist Rosemary Fanti and DJ Brent Rolland.

—Southport & Irving ( SIP ), 4000 N. Southport Ave., will host a wine-tasting class led by Michael Scharber from Cream Wine Company on Wed., March 25, 6-8 p.m. For $20 per person, guests will enjoy wines expertly paired with a selection of artisanal meats from the Smoking Goose Meatery and cheeses from the Great American Cheese Collection. Space is limited; call 773-857-2890.

—Roka Akor, 456 N. Clark St., will host a sommelier-guided dinner featuring the portfolio of Wilson Daniels wines Thursday, March 26, at 6:30 p.m. Among the food items being offered are grilled diver sea scallop, cured Muscovy duck breast, and caramelized cinnamon mousse Kabocha cheesecake. Tickets are $120 each, excluding tax and gratuity; call 312-477-7652 or email .

—White Oak Tavern, 1200 W. Webster Ave., will start weekend brunch Saturday, March 28. Among the slated offerings are housemade tamales, brunch salad, open-faced Cuban sandwiches and sourdough waffles; drink will include the Bloody Mary, beermosa and Ten Million Strong ( Rhine Hall oaked grappa, chinato and freshly squeezed orange juice ). Visit .

—Maxwell's at the Club, 500 N. Kingsbury St., is offering a special Passover Dinner, 5:30 p.m.-9:30 p.m., on Friday, April 3. Passover favorites will include matzo ball soup, gefilte fish with beet horseradish, braised brisket of beef and roast lamb. The Passover buffet is $45 for adults and $15 for children up to 10. Reservations are recommended; call 312-527-5800, ext. 301.

—The 107th Annual Next Year Day ( to commemorate the time since the Chicago Cubs last won a World Series ) will take place Saturday, April 4, at the Cubby Bear Chicago at 8 p.m., and will feature live music, giveaways and more. ( The Heckler is behind the event. ) Tickets are $10; visit

—The luxury lifestyle hotel Thompson Chicago, 21 E. Bellevue St., is hosting its second annual "Golden Egg in the Gold Coast" event. All guests staying overnight on Saturday, April 4, have the opportunity to hunt for several color-coated eggs hidden throughout 10 hotel guest rooms that hold special prizes including complimentary in-room dining, drinks in Salone Nico, and the prized gilded golden egg hiding a complimentary overnight stay. Visit or call 312-266-2100.

—For Easter, Table fifty-two, 52 W. Elm St., will offer special pan-seared lamb chops to be enjoyed alongside Sunday supper favorites like Chef Art Smith's fried chicken and waffles, Executive Chef Rey Villalobos' Southern-fried catfish, crab cake Benedict, spring omelets and quiche and the restaurant's brick-oven macaroni and cheese. The special will be 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Visit

—Oak Brook restaurant El Tapeo will offer a special a la carte Easter brunch on Sunday, April 5, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Items at the Spanish eatery will include Iberian eggs Benedict, Spanish omelet and Spanish cava mimosas, among other items. Children will enjoy a special Easter movie viewing, a coloring and separate cookie station, and will leave with bags filled with Easter candy and treats ( reservation required for families with children ). Visit .

—Easter brunch at the Florentine, 151 W. Adams St., is $55 for adults, $20 for children under 12; also, for the adults, access to the mimosa bar or unlimited Bloody Marys is available for an additional $15. Culinary fare will include buttermilk pancakes with blueberry preserves as well as carving ham and lamb stations. Reservations are recommended; call 312-660-8866.

—Luella's Southern Kitchen, 4609 N. Lincoln Ave., will have an Easter entree featuring items such as crawfish etouffee with Carolina gold rice ( $14 ) and a dessert special, the dessert sampler ( $6 ), featuring a beignet, blackberry hand pie, milk-chocolate bread pudding and caramel ice cream. Visit .

—A10 Hyde Park Eatery & Bar, 1462 E. 53rd St., will be serving Easter brunch on Sunday, April 5, at 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Guests will start on a sweet note with an assortment of housemade pastries such as banana muffins, hot-crossed sticky buns and crystallized ginger scones. A selection of entrees will be offered, including lobster Benedict, chicken-fried quail and cinnamon-raisin French toast. The cost is $35 per person ( includes coffee or tea ); call 773-288-1010.

—Tortoise Club, 350 N. State St., will host an Easter buffet on Sunday, April 5, 10:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Items include a Belgian waffle station, eggs Benedict florentine, a raw seafood bar and desserts, among others offerings. The cost is $22 ( children 5-12 )-$59 ( adults ). Visit .

—Devon Seafood Grill, 39 E. Chicago Ave., is offering a special Easter prix fixe menu prepared by Executive Chef John Cosnotti on Sunday, April 5, 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Salad options include Maine lobster bisque, among others; entrees include center-cut filet, seared George's Bank scallops, bone-in pork chop and/or jumbo crab cakes; and dessert options are vanilla bean creme brulee, lava cake, berries and cream, and apple croustade. Call 312-440-8660 or visit .

—Lockwood Restaurant & Bar, located within The Palmer House Hilton at 17 E. Monroe St., will offer two dining options Easter Sunday, April 5—a special brunch buffet at 11 a.m-3 p.m. and a our-course prix fixe menu at noon-10 p.m. The brunch buffet is $65 for adults, $59 for seniors, $29 for children ( 6-12 years old ) and complimentary for children 5 and younger; the four-course prix fixe menu is $62 per person. Brunch offerings include chicken-and-kale ravioli, organic eggs and omelets, and chocolate-chip bread pudding, among other items. Visit .

—Modern French bistro Bistronomic, 840 N. Wabash St., will offer a seasonally focused three-course Easter brunch menu on Sunday, April 5, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The price is $39 for adults and $19 for children 12 years and under. ( Bottomless mimosas are available to adults for $15 per person. ) The many offerings will include short-stack pancakes, Bistronomic deviled eggs, savory crepes, Scottish salmon salad and chocolate hazelnut bars, among others. NOTE: The a la carte brunch menu will not be available during Easter brunch. Call 312-944-8400 or visit .

—On Easter Sunday, MAX's Wine Dive, 1482 N. Milwaukee Ave., invites dinners of all ages to enjoy brunch and an Easter egg hunt. MAX's brunch menu has items like braised pork belly Benedict with giardiniera hollandaise as well as Famous Southern Fried Chicken with jalapeno-buttermilk-marinated chicken, home fries, collard greens and Texas toast. Reservations are recommended and can be made by calling 773-661-6581 or visiting

— Ruxbin, 851 N. Ashland Ave., will host an intimate Easter dinner that will debut a new dish from the upcoming spring menu. Guests will enjoy an exclusive preview of Chef Edward Kim's Mediterranean-inspired lamb saddle with Israeli couscous, prunes, feta, cardamom yogurt, preserved lemon and blackberries. The special Easter dinner for two is priced at $75, and is available on Sunday, April 5, at 5:30-9 p.m. Reservations are recommended; call 312-624-8509 or visit .

—Stan's Donuts & Coffee is joining forces with John Manion, chef/owner of the West Loop Latin-inspired eatery La Sirena Clandestina, for a special donut collaboration for March. The third installment of Stan's monthly guest donut series features a salted dulce de leche "Squaresmarck" ( a square-shaped version of a classic bismarck ) through Friday, March 20, for $3.25 each at both Stan's locations ( 1560 N. Damen Ave. and 259 E. Erie St. ). Additionally, $.25 from every donut purchased will be donated to UN 86'd ( which helps restaurant professionals in need ); Manion sits on its board of directors. See .

—Lush Wine & Spirits offers charcuterie as well at neighborhood locations in the West Loop and Roscoe Village. ( The University Village site has closed. ) People can choose a flight of three from a selection that includes duck prosciutto, foie gras pate, cappicola, chorizo rioja, Pata Negra ham and more. Visit .

—Atwood, 1 W. Washington St., has opened its downtown Chicago restaurant after a three-month renovation, unveiling a remodeled dining room and expanded bar area. March also marks the 120th anniversary of the famed Reliance Building, a National Historic Landmark now known as Kimpton's Hotel Burnham. Located inside its historical structure, Atwood is the first installment of Hotel Burnham's $4.1-million renovation, which will conclude with newly renovated guest rooms and public spaces this spring. Helmed by Executive Chef Brian Millman and Head Bartender Ray Anguiano, the opening will also mark the debut of new spring menus featuring seasonal American food and drink.

—On Monday, March 30, the restaurant 312 Chicago ( 136 N. LaSalle St. ) will mark its 17th anniversary with a aperitivo hour party at 6 p.m. The party will also launch the start of a weekly "Aperitivo Hour" held at 312 Chicago every Monday at 4-6 p.m. in the bar. Additionally, throughout this celebratory month, 312 Chicago will be randomly gifting 17 parties who arrive for dinner after 7 p.m. with envelopes containing complimentary giveaways, such as complimentary glasses of wine and dinner for two.

—In celebrating the James Beard Awards' inaugural debut in Chicago, the chefs of The Langham, 330 N. Wabash Ave., partner with the James Beard Foundation to host a Celebrity Chef Tour dinner on April 16 at 6:30 p.m. The Langham hotel's Executive Chef Anthony Zamora—along with Travelle's Chef Tim Graham and Pastry Chef Scott Green—will create a six-course menu in collaboration with past and present award-winning and nominated Chicago-based chefs, including Chef Chris Pandel of Balena, The Bristol, and Formeto's; Chef Giuseppe Tentori of GT Fish & Oyster; Chef Paul Virant of Perennial Virant and Vie Restaurant; and Chef Andrew Zimmerman of Sepia. Tickets are $190 per person, all inclusive. Reservations are strongly required, as there are only 125 seats available; call 312-923-9988 or visit

—Eduardo's Enoteca, 1212 N. Dearborn St., is launching its spring menu. Culinary offerings include a grilled spring vegetable pesto pizza ( $16 ) and grilled pork tenderloin ( $22 ), among others. Spring cocktails ( for $12 ) include Purple Rain ( bourbon, splash of lemon juice, simple syrup, muddled blueberries, orange bitters and a lemon twist ), and others. Visit or call 312-337-4490.

—Dining Out for Life will take place Thursday, April 30, in dozens of cities across the nation—including New York City, one of the newest locations to help in the fight against HIV/AIDS. Chicago will also be among the 60 sites involved. Visit .

Send items to or follow on Twitter @Azygous60610.

This article shared 3320 times since Tue Mar 17, 2015
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