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Dining news: Pride cupcakes; Mondo open for lunch
Special to the online edition of Windy City Times
by Andrew Davis, Windy City Times
2015-06-23

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—Magnolia Bakery, 108 N. State St., is showing its support of the LGBT community with the Pride Cupcake. It's a classic chocolate or vanilla cupcake topped with celebratory rainbow decorations and confetti. Cupcakes are $3.50 each, and will be available at the store June 19-29 or through pre-order by calling 312-246-7777.

—Mondo Meatball, 1467 N. Milwaukee Ave., is now open for lunch every Wednesday through Friday at 11:30 a.m. The complete menu will be available for lunch as well as a $10 lunch special that includes a choice of soda, chips and a sub ( available for dine-in only ). Visit MondoMeatball.com .

—After an electrical fire forced its closure in May, The Winchester is officially making its return to Chicago's East Village neighborhood at 1001 N. Winchester Ave. After reinstalling the space, the organic-focused cafe and restaurant reopened June 20. In addition to its brunch program, Executive Chef Greg Bastien presents a reworked menu and revised hours to emphasize the eatery's afternoon, dinner and bar programs. Visit WinchesterChicago.com .

—The InterContinental Chicago hotel, 505 N. Michigan Ave., is once again flying the rainbow flag along with its others, through Sunday, June 28. The hotel is home to such eateries as Michael Jordan's Steakhouse and ENO Wine Bar.

—Dusek's Board & Beer, 1807 S. Allport St., is now open for lunch, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday through Friday. The lunch menu features a mix of classic dishes, such as the Juicy Lucy ( $14 ) and the Market Omelet ( $12 ), as well as new additions like the Oyster Po Boy ( $14 ). The centerpiece of the new Dusek's lunch menu is the Lunch Ordinary ( $15 ), which includes a selected sandwich paired with Moody Tongue's Thalia Hall Pilsner and a "back to work" coffee. Visits DuseksChicago.com .

—Nando's PERi-PERi, the South African-Portuguese restaurant known worldwide for its spicy flame-grilled chicken, is opening Wed., June 24, in Lake View at 670 W. Diversey Pkwy. Nando's has two other sites opening this year, in Lincoln Park and in the West Loop. PERi-PERi, or African bird-s-eye chili, is the advertised as the essence of the Nando's experience. Visit NandosPeriPeri.com .

—On Thursday, June 25, the Latin-focused Carnivale, 702 W. Fulton Market, will hold "Dessert, Drag and Cabaret" at 9:30 p.m. The evening, hosted by Aly Bockler of You & Me This Morning and Angi Taylor of 103.5 KISS—FM, will feature the talents of Natasha Douglas, Tila Von Twirl, Ray Ray Sunshine, Switch Boi Wonder, Siren Jinx, and DJ AJ Dubbz & Carla Starla. The show is for those 21 and over, and tickets are $30; visit CarnivaleChicago/features.

—Le Meridien Chicago Oakbrook Center has officially opened its outdoor patio, L87. In addition to the hotel's tapas restaurant, El Tapeo, L87 features a menu with savory breakfast and lunch options, and a drink menu featuring classic cocktails with a twist and local craft beer. Regular hours for L87 are 6:30 a.m.-11 p.m.; visit www.lemeridienoakbrook.com/longitude or call 630-368-9900.

—The Green City Market Junior Board will present the "Meet the Market" summer series Thursday, June 25, 6-8 p.m., with a pizza and cocktail party on the patio at The Duck Inn, 2701 S. Eleanor St. Chef Jared Batson of Nomad Food Company will park his wood-fired oven pizza truck on the street and sling freshly-baked pizzas covered with fresh produce from Growing Power urban farm—free—for all at the event. There is a $10 suggested donation. Visit the Facebook event to RSVP.

—Downtown Long Grove's annual Strawberry Festival is returning this year, on Friday-Saturday, June 26-27, from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., and Sunday, June 28, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Offerings will include everything from preserves to strawberry candles to strawberry hot-pepper jelly to prime-rib sandwiches with strawberry salsa. See www.VisitLongGrove.com .

—Piccolo Sogno, James Beard Foundation and Bon Appetit Presents Chicago Gourmet are hosting "Gourmet in the Garden" ( a Friends of James Beard benefit ) at Piccolo Sogno, 464 N. Halsted St., on Saturday, June 27, 1-4 p.m. Items will include wild-boar croquettes, razor clams alla Milanese and assorted pizzas, among other items. Tickets are $50 ( including tax and gratuity ); visit GourmetInTheGarden.Eventbrite.com .

—Labriola Ristorante & Cafe, 535 N. Michigan Ave., and Stan's Donut & Coffee ( two Chicago locations ) are sending two winners and their guests to see the Grateful Dead in concert at Soldier Field on Saturday, July 4. Stop by either of the Stan's Donuts locations or Labriola from through Monday, June 29, and try one of the limited-time Grateful Dead specials to automatically be entered to win.

—On Saturday, June 27, The Chardonnay Run ( www.thechardonnayrun.com/ ), a national 5k wine-racing series, will take place at Grant Park, 337 E. Randolph St. The Chardonnay Run is an athletic social event where racers are rewarded with wine at the finish line, but there will also be food trucks and live music. Start times are 5, 5:30 and 6 p.m.

—Evanston's Smylie Brothers Brewing Company, 1615 Oak Ave., will celebrate its first anniversary Saturday, June 27. The pig roast starts at 5 p.m., with live music by Jackstraw at 8 p.m. Admission is $30 ( $15 for kids up to 12 ); call 224-999-7320 or visit PayPal.

—Ampersand will host "AmperBash," the eatery's grand opening, on Saturday, June 27, 6-10 p.m. at 4845 N. Damen Ave. Ampersand Wine Bar Chef Darren McGraw will host a neighborhood grand-opening wine walk, presented by the Lincoln Square Ravenswood Chamber of Commerce and Greater Ravenswood Chamber of Commerce. Tickets are $25; visit https://amperbash.chirrpy.com/.

—The 14th AlphaBeer will take place Saturday, June 27, 6-9 p.m., at A. J. Hudson's Public House, 3801 N. Ashland Ave. This event ( with 26 different beers, one representing each letter of the alphabet ) will spotlight "Women in Beer," and will take place in a bar that a woman co-owns. Tickets are $50 each, or $250 for a table of six; visit AlphaBeer.com .

—Windy City RibFest in Uptown will take place July 3-5 at Lawrence Avenue and Broadway. In addition to slabs, libations and music, there will also be arts & crafts and kids' activity areas ( art, games, inflatables, etc. ). Rib vendors are Aussom Aussie Australian BBQ, BBQ King Smokehouse, Chicago BBQ Company, Arkansas' Porky Chicks BBQ, Sweet Baby Ray's and Texas Lightning BBQ. Visit WindyCityRibfest.com .

—Several Chicago restaurants are doing promotions connected with The Grateful Dead performing at Soldier Field July 3-5. Howells & Hood, 435 N. Michigan Ave., offers guests a chance to enjoy tasty Grateful Dead Special Brownies, with a secret ingredient. Also, Stan's Donuts & Coffee is offering one-of-a-kind Psychedelic Glazed Donuts; every guest who purchases a Psychedelic Donut until June 29 is automatically entered to win two tickets to see the Grateful Dead at Soldier Field on July 4.

—In dual honor of Independence Day and the Grateful Dead's 50th Anniversary three-night run at Soldier Field, LUXBAR, 18 E. Bellevue Pl., invites guests to a Grateful Dead themed brunch all weekend long. The Gold Coast restaurant will be playing the Dead's greatest hits and pouring pints of Dogfish Head's liquid tribute to the iconic band, American Beauty. Also, guests are invited to enjoy Gibsons Bar & Steakhouse's ( 5464 N. River Rd., Rosemont ) regular menus this Fourth of July, featuring USDA Gibsons Prime Angus steaks, chops, fresh fish, enormous lobster tails, massive desserts, extensive wine list and famously large martinis.

—Pinstripes Chicago, 435 E. Illinois St., is hosting a four-course dinner overlooking the Chicago River for the Fourth of July. Items include antipasto-and-cheese platter, market salad, filet mignon trio or pine nut-crusted halibut, and housemade gelato. Admission is $49 per person ( not including alcohol, tax or gratuity ). Reservations are required; visit http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/1644856.

—More than a dozen local restaurants will fire up their grills when Roscoe Village Burger Fest returns for its sixth year on Saturday-Sunday, July 11-12, 11 a.m.-10 p.m., on Belmont and Damen avenues. Judges will include Doug Sohn of Hot Doug's fame, ABC-7's Janet Davies and another to be announced. The music line-up includes New Jersey alt-rockers The Smithereens and Chicago electronic pop-rockers I Fight Dragons, among others. Visit RoscoeVillageBurgerFest.com .

—Bistronomic, 840 N. Wabash Ave., will offer a three-course gluten-free Bastille Day menu from Monday, July 13, to Sunday, July 19, during dinner for $39 per person. ( Bastille Day is July 14. ) The gluten-free menu is a remembrance to the period when flour was scarce and the French had to make do without bread because of high grain prices. Items include country pate and chicken-liver mousse, or oven-roasted summer carrot salad ( appetizers ); a duo of New York steak and steak tartare, or Faroe Island salmon ( entrees ); and Floating Island and Baked Alaska ( dessert ). Visit Bistronomic.net .

—Chicago's Best Summer WingFest—advertised as "a bigger and better version" of Chicago's Best WingFest—will be held Saturday, Sept. 5, 1-7 p.m., at the Bailey Auditorium, 1340 W. Washington St. Chicago's Best Summer WingFest will feature double the wing-slinging restaurants, live music, carnival games, a vendor market, craft beer and a full bar. Tickets for Chicago's Best Summer WingFest ( $40 ) will go on sale Wed., June 24, at 12 p.m; visit www.WingFest.net .

—Originally debuting as a neighborhood bar on Clark Street in 2007, an entirely new iteration of Villains Chicago officially returns for business this summer with a 4,000-square-foot South Loop location at 730 S. Clark St. Executive Chef Dennis Stover ( Vie, The Publican, Longman & Eagle, Big Star, HotChocolate ) takes the helm in the kitchen with American fare, alongside spirits director and head bartender Nick Salazar ( Billy Sunday, Yusho ) and General Manager Marco Silva. See VillainsChicago.com .

—The Meatloaf Bakery is opening a second location in Chicago's French Market, 131 N. Clinton St. Customers will enjoy items like The Mother Loaf, Herby Turkey Loaf and Loaf-A-Roma, as well as options tailored to the new location. Visit www.frenchmarketchicago.com/index.php or www.themeatloafbakery.com .

Send items to Andrew@WindyCityMediaGroup.com or follow on Twitter @Azygous60610 .


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