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Mondo Guerra's creation; Chicago Chef Week
Dining news: Special to the online edition of Windy City Times
by Andrew Davis, Windy City Times

This article shared 3037 times since Tue Feb 26, 2013
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—Mondo Guerra, winner of Lifetime's Project Runway All-Stars, is the newest spokesperson for Dining Out for Life hosted by Subaru, an annual fundraiser for AIDS service organizations throughout North America. Guerra has created a limited-edition T-shirt to benefit Dining Out for Life that debuted at a Valentine's Day event in Philadelphia. Dining Out for Life will take place April 25 in several North American cities, including Chicago; visit .

—Celebrate Chicago's culinary offerings at many of the city's most notable chef-driven restaurants during the Fifth Annual Chicago Chef Week, March 17-22. Nearly 75 restaurants will offer a three-course, prix fixe dinner menu for $44 each; for those who serve lunch, there's a $22 menu. See for the full list of participating restaurants.

—The Goddess and Grocer is opening a fourth location Wed., Feb. 27—this time at 901 N. Larrabee St., in the River North area. The 1,600-square-foot space can seat 36, and will feature made-to-order and ready-to-eat items such as sandwiches, salads, soups and entrees. The Goddess and Grocer on Larrabee will be open 6 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday-Friday and 7 a.m.-9 p.m. Saturday-Sunday; the phone number is 312-988-9870.

—On March 1, LM Restaurant Group—owner and operator of LM Bistro, Brasserie by LM, Troquet and Brasserie 54 by LM—will introduce another concept to its portfolio: L'étage. French for "upstairs," L'étage will be a cocktail and wine bar (seating 40 people) located on the second floor of Brasserie 54 at 5420 N. Clark St. See .

—The gay group I Like Red (and White) Wine will hold its second annual fundraiser, "Let's Make a Difference" at Second Unitarian Church, 656 W. Barry, on Saturday, March 9, at 6:30 p.m. RSVP at

—The conservation group Oceana released a new report that reveals, among other things, that 33 percent of 1,215 fish samples collected were mislabeled, according to National Geographic. Oceana suggests that mislabeling fish prevent consumers from choosing seafood that is both better for them and the environment.

—Downers Grove restaurant Carlucci, 1801 Butterfield Rd., is offering a cooking class with Executive Chef Jonathan Harootunian Sunday, March 10, 12-3 p.m. Items include roasted vine ripe tomato, hand-rolled tagliatelle pasta and seasonal fresh berries (with lemon-zabaglione and crisp phyllo wafers). The cost is $45; call 630-512-0990.

—Municipal Bar + Dining Company, 216 W. Ohio St., is now open for lunch starting at 11 a.m. on weekdays. Lunch appetizers include steak tartar ($12) and lobster avocado salad ($15), while lobster roll ($15) and chorizo gourmet burger ($14) are among the sandwiches offered. Call 312-951-2125 or visit .

—Deleece, 3747 N. Southport Ave., is offering a $75 six-course wine dinner on Tuesday, March 19. Among the offerings are crispy duck breast (paired with 2010 Beckmen Cuvee Le Bec, Santa Ynez Valley, Calif.) and pasta frolla (with 2010 Quady Elysium, Madera, Calif.). Reservations are required; call 773-325-1710 or visit .

—Chicago Cut Steakhouse has unveiled a new mixology program. The new cocktails are modernized versions of old Chicago favorites. For $12 per cocktail, guests will sample the Chicago 75 (Gin, St. Germaine liqueur, simple syrup and fresh lemon juice) and the Berrymore (Tito's Vodka, simple syrup, prosecco, fresh strawberries), among others. See .

—Porkchop, 941 W. Randolph St., has whiskey flights. Each flight may be paired with a slider trio that would cost $6. Among the flights is The Zoologist ($21, consisting of Pig's Nose, Sheep Dip and Monkey Shoulder). See .

—Baconfest Chicago will take place at the UIC Forum, 725 W. Roosevelt Rd., on Saturday, April 20. The lunch session will be 12:30-3 p.m., and the dinner session will be 6:30-9 p.m., with a one-hour VIP event happening before each. A panel of judges bestows the Golden Rasher Awards on chefs and guests for achievement in the bacon arts. Tickets are $100 each; see for more details.

—The sold-out 14th Annual Chicago WingFest, held Feb. 25, brought out more than 2,000 people. The following were proclaimed winners, in a double-blind judged competition: Best Mild Wing—Gators Wing Shack, Best Hot Wing—Mahoney's Pub & Grille, Best BBQ Wing—Mahoney's Pub & Grille, Best Exotic Wing—Tap House Grill. Tap House was also "Best of the Fest."

—Troquet, 1834 W. Montrose Ave., will celebrate its one-year anniversary Thursday, March 7. To commemorate the occasion, the restaurant will offer a $2 Croque Monsieur (usually $8). In addition, Troquet's menu features a variety of other croque sandwiches including a Croque Madame with a fried egg for $10 and a Croque Végétarian with caramelized onions, brie and spinach for $8. See .

—Kanela Old Town is now open at 1552 N. Wells St. This is the restaurant's second location, and is owned by Chris Lardakis (owner of Kanela Breakfast Club in Lakeview) and Alexi Giannoulias (former Illinois state treasurer). Kanela will be open daily for breakfast, brunch and lunch beginning at 6:30 a.m. See .

—Chicago q, 1160 N. Dearborn St., will celebrate National Chili Day Thursday, Feb. 28, with a cup of chili with cornbread, either poblano cheddar or honey butter, for $8.50. (A bowl of chili will also be available for $10.25.) Call 312-642-1160.

—The foodie social event Dishcrawl will take place Tuesday, March 12, in Lakeview. (The Feb. 27 event in the West Loop is sold out.) The event—in which people will visit four restaurants in one night—will take place at 7 p.m. and costs $45. Visit

—Frontier, 1072 N. Milwaukee Ave., will celebrate two years in business on Thursday, Feb. 28. Guests will enjoy a live DJ and a spring cocktail menu preview featuring $6 cocktails as well as complimentary small bites specially prepared by Executive Chef Brian Jupiter 7-8 p.m. Festivities will also include a complimentary mixology sampling hosted by Nolet's, Kettle One and Bulleit 7-9 p.m.

—The Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, 2430 N. Cannon Dr., explores the role food plays in our lives with the premiere of its newest self-developed exhibit, "Food: The Nature of Eating." The exhibit runs March 23-Sept. 8. See .

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