Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2020-07-08
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News  Entertainment Features Donate Bars & Clubs Calendar Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

SAVOR Talking with Travelle's chefs; dining news
DISH Dining Guide
by Andrew Davis, Windy City Times
2018-11-19

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


There was a time when dining at a hotel's restaurant was almost an afterthought.

How times have changed. Many hotels across the nation now boast at least dining establishment that features upscale dishes that warrant repeat visits.

Among such spots is Chicago's Travelle at the Langham ( 330 N. Wabash Ave.; TravelleChicago.com ), which features plenty of items with innovative twists.

Recently, Windy City Times talked with Travelle Chef de Cuisine Jeff Vucko and The Langham Executive Chef Damion Henry ( who oversees all culinary operations within the hotel—including its 15,000 square feet of banquet space, Travelle, Pavilion, in-room private dining and exclusive Club Lounge ) about what distinguishes the food at the spot—and they both cited a determination to raise standards.

"We keep challenging ourselves," said Henry, who landed here after being in Jamaica, Miami and New York City. "We keep setting the bar. We get five stars, but we don't settle. We want to be the best restaurant in the city.

"There are the big boys, like the Book Group and Lettuce Entertain You, and hotels like the Four Seasons. I like eating at those places, but we want to be in the conversation as well. We want to be the giant-busters and be the giants of the city ourselves."

"We definitely challenge ourselves and we don't want to be comfortable," echoed Vucko, who even was involved in the insurance business at one point, but who said he followed his dream of owning a restaurant. "Never stop."

Vucko and Henry have both been involved with Travelle since it opened in 2013—so why have they remained with this establishment, when so many other people seem to quickly and continuously jump from one culinary spot to another? "The space itself is gorgeous, and I feel like it's on tier with a luxury brand," Vucko said. "I also went through two chefs de cuisine, and learned a lot. We competed in [the culinary competition] Cochon555 and we won this region—twice." He also talked about embracing Chicago's Green City Market—so much so that Travelle has hosted a Green City Market dinner series for the past three years.

From the start, The Langham "was sold as a luxury, five-star dining experience," Henry added. "A lot of times you hear that, but it doesn't come to fruition. But here, the best talent in the country is here, and the backbone of that is still here."

And the talent these chefs exhibit was apparent during lunch, when I was fortunate enough to try a hearty serving of creamy barley risotto and a perfectly cooked lamb burger. However, there is one experience Vucko described that warrants a return visit.

"There's this 32-ounce tomahawk chop that we bury in salt and put in the oven. Then we crack [the salt shell] tableside, in front of the guests. Then we light a torch and give it a little sear," he said. This writer had heard of fish being prepared that way—and it comes out tasty, without retaining the salt.

Travelle is definitely on its way to being included in those conversations Henry mentioned.

Note: Restaurant profiles/events are based on invitations arranged from restaurants and/or firms.

Dining news

—On Wednesdays, Schaumburg's Tokio Pub is offering, for $12, any combination of three burgers—including the Tokio Sunrise Burger, Eruption Burger and the signature Ramen Burger—with any of the eight beers for 24 pairings. See http://tokiopub.com/.

—The Dearborn's pie program includes a choice of key lime ( graham cracker crust, key lime curd, vanilla cheesecake, toasted meringue ), Dutch apple ( traditional pie crust, Granny Smith-and-gala apple filling, streusel topping ), brown sugar pumpkin ( traditional pie crust, spiced pumpkin custard, mascarpone whip cream ) and bourbon pecan ( butter crust, caramelized pecans, brown sugar, bourbon ). Pre-order by calling 312-384-1242 at least 48 hours in advance. Pies are $35 each and are available now through Jan. 2.

—Sable Kitchen & Bar has a kitschy Christmas pop-up bar, Miracle, that will take over its cocktail den with "Miracle at Sable Kitchen & Bar" on Nov. 23-Dec. 31. In collaboration with Cocktail Kingdom, Miracle's cocktail menu of 10 Christmas-inspired libations and two shots will be served in festively ornate glassware by Beverage Director Jenee Craver. A launch party will be held Friday, Nov. 23, 5-7 at 505 N. State St. and guests are urged to wear ugly holiday sweaters; visit SableChicago.com .

—Launching on Black Friday and running through the holiday season, Lincoln Park spot Gemini will offer its ZooLights prix fixe special, including two courses and Santa's Cookies and a hot beverage to-go ( $36 ). Starters include the chef's seasonal soup of the day, and Gemini Salad or mini-chorizo empanadas, followed by a choice of lasagna bolognese, rainbow trout provencal or steak frites. See GeminiChicago.com .

—Starting the week of Nov. 26, Ina Mae Tavern & Packaged Goods, 1415 N. Wood St., will offer daily specials. They include kids eating free on Mondays, Yakamein Tuesdays ( yakamein being a Southern soup similar to ramen ), All-You-Can-Eat Shrimp Wednesdays ( the shrimp being $35 ) and Fried Chicken, Beer and Bingo Thursdays. See www.inamaetavern.com/.


facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email





Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

SAVOR Tzuco 2020-07-08 - Beginning July 1, the French-Mexican spot Tzuco ( 720 N. State St.; tzuco.com ) offered indoor seating at 25-percent capacity, per Phase 4 ...


Gay News

Last call for Little Jim's 2020-07-05 - Longtime Lake View tavern Little Jim's shut its doors July 2. Billing itself as "the original hookup bar," Jim Gates opened Little ...


Gay News

COVID-19 Replay closes July 5-6 after employee tests positive 2020-07-05 - The restaurant Replay Andersonville, 5358 N. Clark St., is closing July 5-6 after owner Mark Liberson posted on Facebook that an employee tested ...


Gay News

Nonprofits can apply for charitable trust grants for food, housing 2020-06-30 - A grant program to help small nonprofit organizations provide food and housing assistance will begin taking applications July 1-Sept. 30, Illinois state Treasurer ...


Gay News

Food Center sign registers BLM support 2020-06-26 - Longtime activist Lori Cannon stands in front of a sign in support of Black Lives Matter that hung at North Side Food Center ...


Gay News

Pride Fest Chicago goes virtual 2020-06-24 - Chicago's beloved annual Pride Fest made the move to Twitch for a special Virtual Pride Fest, presented by Northalsted Business Alliance and Gilead ...


Gay News

SAVOR The Clubhouse Oak Brook; Bub City Rosemont 2020-06-23 - When the incomparable Nina Simone sang "It's a new dawn/it's a new day" in her immortal song "Feeling Good," it's a safe bet ...


Gay News

'Chicago Is a [Digital] Drag Festival' June 30 2020-06-21 - The Chicago Is a [Digital] Drag Festival—a Brave Space Alliance fundraiser, with Shea Coulee hosting—will take place Tuesday, June 30, at 8 p.m. ...


Gay News

Equality Illinois hosts statewide Pride Month virtual event 2020-06-21 - Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Equality Illinois held a "Can't Stop Our Pride: One Day, One Illinois" afternoon-long virtual Pride month event ...


Gay News

PASSAGES Nightlife figure Cody Laughlin dies at 26 2020-06-20 - Lucky Horseshoe Lounge dancer Cody Laughlin died June 15 at his home. The cause of death is currently unknown. He was 26. Laughlin ...


 



Copyright © 2020 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor


 



About WCMG Publications News  Entertainment Features Donate Bars & Clubs Calendar Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.