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  WINDY CITY TIMES

DINING Asians & Friends dinner, Pizza museum, Valentine's Day options
by Andrew Davis, Windy City Times
2019-02-05

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—Asians & Friends Chicago will host a Chinese New Year's dinner on Saturday, Feb. 23, at 6 p.m. at Jade Court, 626 S. Racine Ave. It will be multi-course dinner ( $35 pre-sale/$40 door ) with a Year of the Pig "Slaughterhouse 3" musical review. For tickets, visit AFChicago.org or mail a check to Asians & Friends Chicago, P.O. Box A 3916, Chicago, Illinois 60690-3916. The pre-sale has ended, but mail-ins will end Mon., Feb. 18.

—National Pizza Day, is Feb. 9, and the U.S. Pizza Museum at Roosevelt Collection is celebrating with a lunchtime presentation from Founder Kendall Bruns and free pizza from Aurelio's Pizza, while supplies last. Doors will open at 11 a.m., with free pizza being given starting at 12:30 p.m.; also, gift-shop items will be discounted 10 percent. RSVP at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/national-pizza-day-at-the-us-pizza-museum-feb-9-registration-55583688308.

—After nearly six decades in business, Artists Cafe, 412 S. Michigan Ave., has closed, The Chicago Tribune noted. In a statement posted on the restaurant's website ( artistscafechicago.com ) and addressed "Dear City of Chicago," the owners, the Mitchell family, expressed gratitude for "every person who has crossed our threshold," and pride in the "twenty-one thousand, one hundred and seventy days" the restaurant has served customers since its 1961 opening.

—This Valentine's Day ( Feb. 14 ), Fulton Market Kitchen is offering an $85 five-course menu ( limited choices per course ), along with a fixed holiday menu paired with Champagne and sparkling wine for $125. options include oyster shooters or fried potato bites, baby arugula and frisee salad or black pepper prawns, lobster tortellini or curried cauliflower, seared tuna, filet or fennel gratin, and chocolate hazelnut cake or blueberry cheesecake. Reservations can be made at FultonMarketKitchen.com/reservations.

—For Feb. 14-16, 312 Chicago, 136 N. LaSalle St., will offer a three-course Italian "Menu di San Valentino" for $80 per couple. The courses will be shrimp-stuffed calamari with zucchini, ricotta, tomato puree; beef tenderloin stuffed with spinach, mushrooms, aged provolone, demiglace and roasted garlic mash; and chocolate flourless cake with pistachio cream, wild berries. See 312Chicago.com .

—On Feb. 14, City Winery, 1200 W. Randolph St., will host a chocolate-and-wine tasting party at 7-9 p.m. Pastry Chef Stacie Kruse and Beverage Director Rebekah Mahru are slated to take patrons on a journey of "exotic chocolate desserts and wild wines." In addition, Remy Martin Cognac will provide an additional tasting station with a cognac specialist to educate on the subtleties of chocolate and cognac pairing. Tickets are $55 each; visit https://citywinery.com/chicago/chocolate-and-wine-tasting-party-2-14-19.html.

—In addition its menu of Pan-Asian dishes, TAO, 632 N. Dearborn St., will feature its signature fortune cookie dressed up for Valentine's Day with brushed chocolate and sprinkled with mini hearts, served with holiday-inspired fortunes. Also, guests are also able to customize fortunes with personal love notes for the special occasion by requesting in advance with a reservation. Reservations are recommended and can be made at taochicago.com/ or 224-888-0388.

—At Ina Mae Tavern & Packaged Goods, 1415 N. Wood St., Chef Brian Jupiter is preparing a $45 three-course New Orleans seafood dinner for guests to enjoy this Valentine's Day, alongside a $20 optional wine pairing. Dinner options include crab and avocado salad or blackened chicken thighs, shrimp gnocchi or catfish Acadiana, and chocolate beignets with Champagne anglaise and candied pecans for dessert. Reservations: InaMaeTavern.com

—Both local locations of Truluck's Seafood, Steak, and Crab House ( Chicago and Rosemont ) will have its offerings ready for Valentine's Day. While the restaurants' signature Florida stone crab is delivered directly from its own Florida Keys fisheries to guests' tables within hours, couples can also indulge in items such as lobscargot ( Maine lobster cooked in herb garlic butter with gruyere and Havarti ), Alaskan king-crab cluster, miso-glazed sea bass and chocolate lava cake, among others. See trulucks.com .

—VU Rooftop Bar—located 22 stories above McCormick Place at 133 E. Cermak Ave.—will host Me + VU, an interactive Valentine's Day mixer, on Thursday, Feb. 14, 5:30-8:30 p.m. In addition, patrons will enjoy specialty themed cocktails, live beats from The DJ Firm, a special appearance from Cupid and more. Tickets to Me + VU are $35 per person, and include entry to the mixer, two specialty cocktails and passed bites; visit VURooftop.com .

—Brunch spot Yolk is inviting couples to enjoy a complimentary sweet single of Red Velvet French Toast with the purchase of any two entrees on Valentine's Day. The sweet special offer is available Thursday, Feb. 14, during normal business hours at each of the eight Chicago Yolk locations and must be redeemed in-store. Yolk's menu includes signature specialty dishes like gourmet five-egg rolled omelet, eggs Florentine, skillets and scramblers, pancakes, frittatas, crepes and other options.

—Tied House, 3157 N. Southport Ave., has launched a more casual menu that's available only at the bar. Some of the items include falafel with yogurt dip and red beeet; beef chicharron with malt vinegar and salt; and crispy Okinawa potato with sunchoke and miso buttermilk. See https://www.tiedhousechicago.com/.

—Smoke Daddy, 3636 N. Clark St., has launched a happy hour in January and February on Monday to Friday from 2 to 5 p.m. The menu features $4 draft beers and $4 Titos cocktails. Additionally, new snacks will be available, such as a slider trio consisting of brisket meatball, smoked pork-belly and fried-chicken sliders ( $6 ); a smoked sausage platter with smoked Italian sausage, smoked andouille hot link, aged cheddar, smoked provolone, cherry peppers, pickles and sSaltines ( $9 ); and smoked S'mores bites with graham-cracker cups, chocolate ganache and toasted marshmallow ( three for $5 ).

—urbanbelly and Chef Bill Kim will bring back their event, Ramenfest, 12-3 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 17, at 1400 W. Randolph St. This year's participants include chefs from restaurants such as Oriole, Smyth + The Loyalist, Somerset, Aba, Monteverde, Lula Cafe, Honey Butter Fried Chicken and more. Tickets are $75-$125 each; visit https://ramenfest2019.brownpapertickets.com/.

—Fisk & Co., 225 N. Wabash Ave., is offering a specialty cocktail based on Best Picture nominee Black Panther through Oscars Sunday on Feb. 24. Crafted by the restaurant's head bartender, Melissa Carroll, the "Shuri" cocktail is modeled after the female character played by Letitia Wright. Priced at $15, it contains Cruzan blackstrap rum, Demerara syrup, Dino S'more Seasonal Stout, egg white, Angostura, and lime juice. The exclusive drink is not listed on the print menu, but is available for anyone who orders it verbally.

—Travelle at The Langham, 330 N. Wabash Ave., has announced the appointment of Danielle Marelli as pastry chef. Marelli has been a part of the Travelle team since 2014, when she joined as a pastry chef de partie. Upon being promoted to pastry sous chef, she assisted former Executive Pastry Chef Scott Green and developed signature recipes for the continuous rotation of seasonal menus. Marelli received The Langham, Chicago's Employee of the Month award in 2016 and the Employee of the Year award in 2017.

—People behind Chicago Market—a local, sustainable co-op grocery store opening in Uptown—are aiming for April 2020 as the opening date. The new 13,239-square-foot location in the former Wilson Red Line Station on the corner of Wilson and Broadway will be the area's first co-op grocery store. Chicago Market is expected to create over 40 new jobs in the area and projects sales of more than $9 million into Uptown's local economy within the first year.

Send items to Andrew@WindyCityMediaGroup.com, or follow on Twitter @Azygous60610 or on Instagram at azygous333.


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