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Dining news: National Vodka Day, James Bond Day, marathon specials
Special to the online edition of Windy City Times
by Andrew Davis, Windy City Times

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—National Vodka Day is Thursday, Oct. 4. Coda di Volpe, 3335 N. Southport Ave., offers the Lightworks ( $12 ) as a Slushie cocktail in the style of a classic Italian sgroppino made with Reyka Vodka, CH Cream Limoncello, thyme, fresh citrus and salt water, topped with prosecco. Also, The Conrad Chicago's Baptiste & Bottle, 101 E. Erie St., features The Boat Tour ( $13 ), which has Reyka Vodka, grapefruit, cassis and sparkling wine.

—SafeHouse Chicago, 60 E. Ontario St., will be celebrating Global James Bond Day on Thursday, Oct. 5, by hosting a special James Bond Lookalike happy hour at 6-8 p.m., in which the winner ( male or female ) will receive a $200 bar tab. Contestants may also dress up as any character from the iconic films to compete. The winner will be chosen and announced at 8 p.m. See .

—For the Chicago Marathon, The Florentine, 151 W. Adams St., will feature a three-day Marathon Menu for fueling up before the big race, along with runners specials featuring discounts and free Two Brothers. Dishes include spaghetti and meatballs ( pork, veal, beef ), rigatoni bolognese ( spaghetti squash, zucchini, red onion ) and arugula salad, among other items. View

—Also for the Chicago Marathon ( Oct. 8 ), runners who visit Joy District, 112 W. Hubbard St., after the marathon will enjoy a 26.2-percent discount for their entire group. The marathon runner must show the runner ID number to receive the discount. Joy District offers Asian-fusion menu items and also has large-format 94-ounce cocktails like Mega Mule, Mega Paloma and the Botanist Punch.

—Also related to the marathon, at Roanoke ( 135 W. Madison St. ), Executive Chef Ryan Kikkert has created a special carbo-load menu Oct. 6-8. Items will include pumpkin ravioli ( $16 ), chicken penne pasta ( $18 ), Marathon Pizza ( $13 ) and tagliatelle pasta ( $18 ). Oct. 8 brunch will feature brown butter French Toast ( $11 ), braised oxtail taquitos huevos ( $12.50 ), porchetta eggs Benedict ( $14 ), ribeye hash skillet ( $12 ) and more. See .

—Imperial Lamian, 6 W. Hubbard St., is offering a complimentary bowl of lamian ( hand-pulled noodles ) to those who show their bib after the race on Oct. 8. Runners can create their own bowl by choosing their favorite noodle, broth and protein and dig their chopsticks in for post-run carb loading.

—Several restaurants have specials related to Breast Cancer Awareness Month. For example, Bottleneck Management's Chicagoland locations ( such as Howells & Hood and Old Town Pour House ) will donate $1 of every Founders Brewing Rubaeus sold to the Lynn Sage Foundation. Also, $1 from every Grosella cocktail sold at Pearl Brasserie will go to support the Lynn Sage Foundation as part of the In Good Taste fundraising campaign. In addition, Lawry's The Prime Rib will donate $2 with the sale of each bottle of Carol's Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc, and $3 with the sale of each bottle of Carol's Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon.

—Also, throughout October at select LEYE ( Lettuce Entertain You ) restaurants, $1 from each glass of the newly launched Giuliana Prosecco will be donated to the Pink Agenda & Fab-U-Wish partnership. Restaurants include Bub City, RPM Italian, RPM Steak, R.J. Grunts, Three Dots and a Dash, Hub 51, Il Porcellino, Ramen-san and Studio Paris.

—In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, theWit Hotel, 201 N. State Street in Chicago is donating a portion of proceeds from State and Lake Chicago Tavern and ROOF on theWit to the Lynn Sage Foundation throughout October. State and Lake Chicago Tavern will donate 10 percent of all craft can sales, while ROOF on theWit will donate 10 percent of all Perrier Jouet Blason Rose sales.

—Krispy Kreme's second Chicagoland location since the brand's return to the area this year will open Tuesday, Oct. 10, at 9150 S. Western Ave., Evergreen Park. The opening-day celebration will begin at 7:30 a.m. with the Evergreen Park Community High School Mustang Marching Band; a ribbon-cutting ceremony will be held at 8 a.m. The first 100 customers in line when doors open at 6 a.m. will be honored with a free dozen Original Glazed® doughnuts every month for a year.

—Loews Chicago Hotel, 455 N. Park Dr., will hold its third annual Harvest Fest on Saturday, Oct. 14, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. The hotel's rooftop terrace, Streeterville Social, will be transformed into a fall pumpkin patch and biergarten to celebrate the autumn season. The pumpkin patch will have pumpkins of various sizes available for patrons to take home and decorate. Every pumpkin is $10 ( any size ), and all pumpkin proceeds benefit Ronald McDonald House Charities of Chicagoland & Northwest Indiana.

—Pork & Mindy's, 1623 N. Milwaukee Ave., is marking National Pork Month by giving back to the community. During October, the BBQ joint is donatings $3 for every 3 Big Piggies "sangwich" sold to Hephzibah Children's Association. The 3 Big Piggies "sangwich" features smoked pulled pork, crispy pork, Pig Candy, BBQ mayo, tempura'fried giardiniera, lettuce and tomato on griddled brioche.

—Naha ( 500 N. Clark St. ), starting Oct. 5, will offer lunch on Thursdays and Fridays at 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Guests can opt for a $25 prix fixe lunch, or get items such as chicken wings or a burger. See .

—The Loop's Kimpton Gray Hotel, 122 W. Monroe St., has announced new culinary leadership at Vol. 39, the literary cocktail lounge tucked away on the second floor, and Boleo, the lively South American-inspired rooftop restaurant and bar. Industry vet and Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants alumnus, Executive Chef Brian Millman is the new executive chef. Also, Boleo's new Chef de Cuisine Cory Morris ( Ronero, Rural Society, Mercat a la Planxa ) joins creative forces with Millman in creating a new menu that complements head bartender Jess Lambert's cocktail program.

—GreenRiver, 259 E. Erie St., has announced the appointment of Amit Gilad as head bartender, and has unveiled a new 22-drink cocktail menu. Cocktails include include the Fleur de Bonhomie, made with snap pea; Agadir Spiceshop, containing Ras al Hanout ( Moroccan spice blend ); and Desert Moon, featuring caramel dates and mascarpone cheese. See

—Staytion, 1 W. Wacker Dr., has several events planned for October. They include "Chi-Town Oktoberfest" on Wed., Oct. 11, 5-7 p.m.; "Movie Night" on Tuesday, Oct. 17, 7-10 p.m., with a pumpkin or chocolate beverage as well as Garrett popcorn; and "A Change of Color" on Saturday, Oct. 28, 10 a.m.-10 p.m., in which a guide from the Navigator Team will lead groups to explore local parks—followed by fall cocktails upon returning to Staytion. See

—Umami Burger is introducing its famed "Impossible Burger" to its Chicago locations in partnership with Impossible Foods. Priced at $16, Umami's Impossible Burger ( which is plant-based ) is served with two patties, caramelized onions, American cheese, miso-mustard, house spread, dill pickles, lettuce, and tomato.

—The 17th annual Kohler Food & Wine Experience will take place Oct. 19-22 in Kohler, Wisconsin. The chef line-up includes Richard Blais, Alex Guarnaschelli, Stephanie Izard, Jeff Mauro and cast members from America's Test Kitchen. See .

—Marshall's Landing, 222 W. Merchandise Mart Plaza, now has a Pastry Case Takeover in which select specials from various local pastry shops, doughnut shops or bakeries will be featured at the Coffee Window each week. Also, Marshall's will show movies throughout the fall ( free "Movies at theMART" screenings every week at 5:30-7:30 p.m. on Wednesdays ). See

—At Chez Moi, 2100 N. Halsted St., Chef Dominque Tougne will celebrate Sweetest Day with a a special prix fixe menu for two. Items will include pumpkin soup served in a pumpkin bowl, a special surf-and-turf and "Bleeding Heart" for Two. The three-course menu for two is $150; see .

—Kendall College Trust's ( KCT's ) Fried Chicken & Champagne Fest will take place Saturday, Nov. 4, 11:30 a.m.-3 p.m. at the college's Skyline Room. A dozen of Chicago's award-winning chefs ( including Acadia's Ryan McCaskey and Monteverde's Sarah Grueneberg ) will make their best chicken renditions, while KCT Executive Director and Check, Please!'s Catherine De Orio will host. Admission is $85-$195; visit

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