Windy City Media Group Frontpage News


home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2021-09-01



Dish List
Special to the Online Edition of Windy City Times
by Andrew Davis

This article shared 4224 times since Wed Nov 26, 2008
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

Dish list spotlights a hot new Streeterville cafe, Espression by Lavazza, as well as the recent FamilyFarmed Expo, a three-day festival of local food and other goods.

—Espression by Lavazza: A new twist on the Old World: The U.S. launch of Espression by Lavazza, Italy's leading coffee company ( that was founded in 1895 ) , has occurred in Chicago at the Drake Hotel, 140 E. Walton. However, despite ( or maybe because of ) the tony address and the chaos on nearby Michigan Avenue, the cafe is a sedate getaway.

Espression by Lavazza takes Lavazza's passion and creativity in coffee and beautifully channels them into a single physical space. Lavazza Director of Marketing Ann Ertsas told Windy City Times that Espression 'touches all the senses'—a justifiable conclusion. Chic art on the walls often dazzle; the sleek counters, chairs and even carafes are made of various materials just begging to be touched; cool music is piped in through the speakers; and the smells of the items there are comforting, to say the least.

Ah, yes: the menu items. Espression has enough tasty items to entice anyone, at any time of the day. Training Manager Giancarlo De Marinis served an amazing array of sandwiches and other treats such as involtini di salmone affumicato, smoked salmon roll-ups with asparagus, cream cheese and mixed greens. Another item, prosciutto e brie panino, played up the salty and sweet beautifully with its combination of prosciutto, Brie cheese and fig conserve on a panini bread. The gelatos were sublime, with such flavors as pistachio, chocolate and lemon.

However, it's the signature espressos that really shine. There are literally dozens of espressos and related drinks—and all that Windy City Times tried were especially tasty. Espessone is espresso topped with flavored light mousse ( in flavors such as caramel and chocolate ) , while espresso nocciolato and espresso autunnale will make anyone a fan of the hazelnut spread Nutella.

In addition, the staff was especially friendly, with De Marinis adding that he is 'training people to recognize customers' by their orders as well as their faces. He said that his goal is to 'make people comfortable.' The prices, by the way, are quite reasonable, leading Ertsas to say that Espression is, essentially, 'affordable luxury.'

The hours for Espression are 6 a.m.-9 p.m. Sunday-Thursday; and 6 a.m.-10 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

Lavazza cafes are in the Loop at 111 W. Jackson, 134 N. LaSalle, 27 W. Washington and 162 E. Ohio. See and .

—FamilyFarmed Expo: Where did Windy City Times sample delicious pastries, down wheatgrass juice, try mead and talk about compost tea? It couldn't have been anywhere else but the FamilyFarmed Expo, a festival of local food and goods that took place at the Chicago Cultural Center, 77 E. Randolph, Nov. 21-23.

Just a few of the standouts included:

—Manna Bread ( ) : The bread, which is high in fiber and free of salt and flour, comes in such flavors as cinnamon date, carrot raisin, sun seed and millet rice. It's sold at Whole Foods.

—Golden Legacy Quality Meats ( ) : The garlic-and-herb turkey was divine, but this Grand Rapids, Mich.-based company other varieties, including tomato-basil, honey smoked and oven-browned.

—Kallari ( ) : There's an altruistic twist with this company; Kallari produces and sells gourmet organic fairly traded dark-chocolate bars. ( Locally, the bars can be found at the Greenheart Shop, 746 N. LaSalle, and the New Leaf Natural Grocery Store, 1261 W. Loyola. )

—A la card ( ) : With this business, eating well is in the cards. Each item in a deck of 52 cards describes a unique chef-driven/owner-operated restaurant—with many of the eateries having localvore connections. Additionally, each card is a $10 gift certificate to the restaurant it describes.

—Oriana's Home Orchard ( e-mail ) : This Winslow, Ill.-based orchard offers more than your standard fruit—try persimmon, Asian pears and atago.

—Chicago Indoor Garden ( ) : Beans, greens and grasses, oh my! Vegans will appreciate this business; shoppers can choose the more mundane ( alfalfa, lentil or soybean ) as well as the more exotic ( mung, Alaskan pea or adzuki bean ) .

—Delightful Pastries ( ) : Proving that not everything has to taste like grass—not that grass is a bad thing—this West Side bakery offers a, well, delightful assortment of sweets. The farmers' market regular has a ton of items on its menu, including paczki ( Polish-style filled doughnuts ) , cheesecakes, croissants and muffins. If you're really worried about gaining weight, there are also low-fat and low-sugar varieties.

—AquaRanch ( ) : This Flanagan, Ill.-based company has a tilapia farm, but it sells much more than tilapia filets, such as tomatoes and peppers. It also offers 'custom-sized liners for tanks, ponds and growbeds used in aquaculture and aquaponic systems of all sizes.'

—Marilyn's Bakery ( ) : This bakery, based in Hobart, Ind., offers a slew of reasonably priced cakes, breads, toffees and pies. However, there are also homemade meals, such as chicken pot pies, quiches and pasties—which has nothing to do with strippers.

—Consolidated Printing Company ( ) : Why was this company at the expo? Well, for one thing, it's been around for over 30 years—and has been green the entire time ( before being eco-friendly was 'in' ) . The business—which printed many items for President-elect Barack Obama during his campaign—uses all environmentally responsible products, including vegetable inks from U.S. farms and alcohol-free fountain solutions.

—Wild Blossom Meadery & Winery ( ) : This winery—based in Chicago—offers items you're unlikely to encounter in your standard beverage store, such as various kinds of mead ( e.g., wild berry and chocolate honey buzz ) , strawberry nectar and green apple Riesling.

—Organic Garden Company ( ) : If you're the type of person who gets excited when you hear the phrase 'worm castings,' this site's for you. They mean business here when it comes to helping gardens and lawns—a fact that becomes all too clear when the subject of 'compost tea' comes up.

—Mint Creek Farm ( ) : You won't find beef at this Stelle, Ill., farm; it's all about the lambs and goats—and the animals graze exclusively on grass, not meal, resulting in a tastier product. People can get everything from lamb bratwurst to boneless should roast, and shoppers can even get the ( shudder ) accompanying organs and bones with certain items.

—King's Hill Farm ( ) : This Wisconsin farm is all about 'building a sustainable future,' according to its brochure—and, to that end, is part of the commuity-supported agriculture ( CSA ) network, a pact in which a prepaid grower agrees to produce a veggies for each member. Moreover, King's Hill has dozens of organic vegetables on its list, including eggplant, celeriac, dill, shallots and beets.

This article shared 4224 times since Wed Nov 26, 2008
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


Gay News

SAVOR Brunch at Cobblestone 2021-10-15
- Recently, there have been a few restaurants I've visited multiple times—if for no other reason than to see if there is consistency in the quality (especially, if good) or some sort of improvement (if the food ...

Gay News

Kit Kat Lounge hosting Kamayan feast Oct. 24 2021-10-15
- Kit Kat Lounge & Supper Club, 3700 N. Halsted St., in honor of Filipino American History Month, will host a special "diva-infused" Kamayan feast featuring Chef Jordan Andino on Sunday, Oct. 24. Andino is the creative ...

Gay News

SAVOR Adorn Bar & Restaurant, take two 2021-10-09
- The last time I stopped by Adorn Bar & Restaurant—in the Four Seasons Hotel, 120 E. Delaware St. (which was also the first time I went there)—I encountered one of the most innovative brunch menus ever, ...

Gay News

Latin Restaurant Weeks taking place in Chicago Oct. 4-18 2021-09-28
- National Hispanic Heritage Month takes place Sept. 15-Oct. 15, recognizing the many contributions of Hispanic Americans. As an effort to acknowledge the successful influences and cultures of Hispanic Americans, Latin Restaurant Weeks, LLC, will host its ...

Gay News

SAVOR Brunch at Wood 2021-09-28
- "Morning Wood" has returned. This provocative name was given to the brunch service at Boystown/Northalsted restaurant Wood, 3335 N. Halsted St., and it drew lots of people before the COVID pandemic changed the world. However, like ...

Gay News

SAVOR Funkenhausen 2021-09-25
- When it comes to fusion, West Town spot Funkenhausen, 1709 W. Chicago Ave., might be one of the more unusual restaurants. The cuisine here is a mixture of German ...

Gay News

NGLCC, Grubhub team to help LGBTQA-owned restaurants 2021-09-25
- The country's vulnerable LGBTQ+-owned restaurants and bars serving food will find help this fall, courtesy of a partnership formed by the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) and Grubhub. These small business owners have been among ...

Gay News

SAVOR Logan Square restaurant Lardon 2021-09-16
- As you might guess from its name, Lardon (2200 N. California Ave..; takes meat very seriously. Named after a small piece of pork fat or fatty bacon, the Logan Square spot is a carnivore's paradise, ...

Gay News

SAVOR Sunny Bowls 2021-09-11
- Looking for a comforting, healthful option for lunch? Then look no further than Sunny Bowls: Souper Food (theMart, #201.;, which specializes in various soups? Part of the food court at theMART (which some also call ...

Gay News

SAVOR The Press Room 2021-08-29
- At The Press Room (1134 W. Washington Blvd..;, a lot of patrons may encounter the unexpected. The West Loop restaurant—which is only open Wednesday through Sunday evenings—has undergone quite ...

Gay News

Andersonville Chamber of Commerce to present Andersonville Homecoming 2021-08-26
--From a press release - CHICAGO (August 26, 2021) — The Andersonville Chamber of Commerce (ACC) is pleased to announce Andersonville Homecoming, a three-night, two-day outdoor festival featuring live entertainment, local artisans and merchants, food ...

Gay News

COVID FDA grants full approval to Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine 2021-08-23
- On Aug. 23, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA granted full approval to the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for people age 16 and older, media outlets reported. This is the first coronavirus vaccine approved by the ...

Gay News

SAVOR South Branch Tavern & Grille 2021-08-19
- Before taking a bite of anything at South Branch Tavern & Grille (100 S. Wacker Dr.;, patrons are likely to be impressed. The reason lies in the picturesque views surrounding the spot. Ensconced near some ...

Gay News

SAVOR Britches and brunch at The Dearborn 2021-08-15
- I've had the pleasure of dining at The Dearborn (145 N. Dearborn St.; several times—but it's always been a weekday outing. Recently, I met a friend for Sunday brunch. The results were both expected ...

Gay News

SAVOR Smashburger 2021-08-12
- With hundreds of fast-food restaurants throughout Chicago, it might seem like the last thing the city needs is another burger spot However, the Denver-based chain Smashburger is in the Windy City—at a pretty busy location, near ...


Copyright © 2021 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.







About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.