Fig & Olive ( 104 E. Oak St.; www.figandolive.com/menu/chicago/ ) recently hosted a media dinner that showcased Chef Wilfrid Hocquet's spring menu. As expected, the dishes had a lighter feelbut still managed to be quite delicious
Items sampled included a refreshing burrata and asparagus, complete with burrata, asparagus, snow peas, hazelnut, arugula, microbasil and blood-orange dressing; a solid crab salad that incorporated such ingredients as celeriac, horseradish mayo and pink pepper; and primavera risotto, complete with arborio rice, asparagus, green pea, garlic and shallot.
The filet mignon ( marinated with rosemary and thyme )and which was accompanied by garlic barley risotto with hedgehog mushroom, manchegoand mascarpone cheesewas a dish to remember. Lastly, the dessert, a clementine vacherin, was almost cleansing; it was served with blood-orange coulis, clementine sorbet, white-chocolate mousse and meringue.
Of course, the spring menu is not limited to these options. Just a few of the other choices include salmon crudo, fennel salad, various carpaccios ( such as beef and yellowfin tuna ), a fig-Gorgonzola tartlet, Chilean sea bass, Provence roasted chicken, chocolate pot de creme and tableside-for-two items like whole branzino and chateaubriand.
Dining Out for Life
The annual event Dining Out for Life will take place Thursday, April 28, in various cities across North America. Dine at one of the 3,000 participating restaurants in nearly 60 cities and that restaurant will donate a portion of the day's proceeds to fund HIV/AIDS care, prevention, education, testing, counseling and other essential services in their city.
Volunteer spokespeople include Ted Allen, host of Food Network's Chopped, actor Pam Grier ( Foxy Brown, Jackie Brown ), designer Mondo Guerra, winner of Lifetime's Project Runway All-Stars, and chef Daisy Martinez from Food Network's Viva Daisy.
Chicago is among the cities participating this year. Some of the others include Atlanta, Indianapolis, Philadelphia and the Delaware Valley, Houston, Vancouver Island, Seattle, Key West and San Francisco.
See DiningOutForLife.com .