Itoko, a Japanese restaurant courtesy of Chef Gene Kato and BOKA Restaurant Group that's at 3325 N. Southport Ave., is debuting its weekend brunch at 10:30 a.m.-2 p.m.
Brunch is centered around Japanese-inspired dishes such as kabocha pancakes (with pecan praline sauce and pumpkin butter); chicken katsu don (with daikon slaw, ginger mayo and katsu sauce); Charcoal Burger (with crispy bun, angus patty, caramelized onion, Kato's steak sauce and satsumaimo fries); steak and eggs (with kimchi fried rice, sunny-side egg, gailan and scallion); and egg souffle (with cheddar cheese, bacon, chive and tomato jam).
Visit www.itokochicago.com/ for more info.
LondonHouse Chicago Executive Chef Liz Sweeney, who has lived on Maui, is doing her part to help the survivors of the recent fires in Hawaii.
Sweeney has had a dish called the Loco Moco, often also referred to as Hawaiian Grinds, on the menu at LondonHouse Chicago for more than four years. This reimagined version of one of Hawaii's most iconic comfort dishes features an Angus beef patty, SPAM-fried rice, whiskey aged shoyu and bone marrow demi, topped with a fried egg ($21).
Through the end of September, LondonHouse Chicago will donate a portion of the proceeds from every Loco Moco sold to those affected by the fires. The funds will go to Sweeney's former restaurant group, Merriman's.
It's going to be all about flowers, pastries and cocktails when Logan Square spot Daisies and Fieldman Flora join forces to present a floral-arrangement/cake-decorating class at Fieldman's Gold Coast studio, 106 W. Oak St., on Sunday, Sept. 17, 11 a.m.-1:30 p.m.
Executive Pastry Chef Leigh Omilinsky and floral designer Amanda Fieldman will host. Attendees will, among other things, gather flowers from the studio's city garden that will be used to construct floral arrangements and to adorn personal 4" cakes that Omilinsky will provide. Of course, there will be pastries and cocktails to sampleand the latter could get those creative juices flowing.
Admission is $155 (+fees)/per person; visit www.eventbrite.com/e/a-morning-of-pastries-flowers-with-daisies-chicago-fieldman-flora-tickets-688871933497 to RSVP.
Labor Day's coming up, which means the end of summer (and, hopefully, goodbye to days with heat indices of 116 degrees).
It also means that The Dawson, 730 W. Grand Ave., will have live music and an authentic Southern lowcountry boil on Sunday, Sept. 3, 5-8 p.m. On the patio, guests will be able to enjoy shrimp, crab, sausage, corn and potatoes; beer and/or wine; and peach pie.
Tickets are $85 each; visit https://www.exploretock.com/thedawson/event/429512/low-country-boil.
National Restaurant Association Restaurant, Hotel-Motel Show has announced that renowned chef, restaurateur and humanitarian Jose Andres will join in a keynote discussion at the 2024 show, taking place May 18-21 at McCormick Place.
Andres will participate in a discussion on the transformative impact of his culinary innovation and philanthropic endeavors, inspiring positive change within communities. A pioneer of Spanish tapas in the United States, Andres is also known for his groundbreaking avant-garde cuisine and his award-winning group of nearly three dozen restaurants located throughout the country (including Chicago) and beyond.
Pop-up alert: On Saturday-Sunday, Sept. 9-10, at Publican Quality Meats, 825 W. Fulton Market, Rob Levitt from PQM (yes, that butcher from The Bear) and James Beard Award-winning baker Greg Wade from Publican Quality Bread will be cranking out their version of Italian beef sandwiches inspired by The Bear's one (and only) Mr. Beefthe legendary beef stand that's been serving up some of the city's best since the 60s.
On Sept. 9, Chris Zucchero of Mr. Beef himself will be in the house with Levitt and Wade, slinging official Mr. Beef merch at 11 a.m.-2 p.m. as an ode to the sandwich that put Chicago on the map.
RSVPs (at Tock) are urged but not required. See https://www.exploretock.com/publicanqualitymeats/event/431579/pqm-x-pqb-x-mr-beef.
And in other Publican Quality Bread news, Greg Wade and his homegrown Chicago bakery will open a new PBQ storefront in Oak Park, slated for late fall.
The new 1,600-square-foot bakerywhich will be at 211 Harrison St., formerly home to Rare Bird Preserves in Oak Park's eclectic Arts Districtis in partnership with One Off Hospitality, the team behind restaurants such as The Publican, Publican Quality Meats, avec, Big Star and The Violet Hour.
On Monday, Sept. 18, Lure Fishbar is opening a one-day only carryout window for its "Haute Happy Meal" in honor of National Cheeseburger Day.
The "Haute Happy Meal" is a double barrel burger with two smash patties with American cheese, secret sauce, fried onion and sliced pickles, served with truffle parmesan fries ($21). For those who want to go super-deluxe, you can add shaved truffle (market price) or a Moet Garden Spritz.
Fans of Stan's Donuts & Coffee can rejoice, as there's another location.
A new donut shop is now open in Mariano's Grocery Orland Park, at 9504 142nd St.
Did you know that master baker Rich Labriola, of Labriola Baking Company, opened the first Stan's Donuts & Coffee in Chicago in 2014the result of a friendship and partnership with Stan Berman, founder of the iconic Los Angeles shop that bears his name?