Monday, December 21, 2009

Bluprint Shutters After Two Years

(Photo: Bluprint)

Merchandise Mart restaurant Bluprint closed today after two years in business.

"Every component of our company is an extension of our Blue Plate family. So it is with mixed emotions that we announce bluprint’s closing," Blue Plate CEO Jim Horan said in a press release. "As we begin a new chapter, we are grateful for the relationships and memories we have made over the last two years."

No further information is available on what's going into the space.

Charlie Trotter is No Scrooge; Buys Out Entire Resto for Xmas Party


This is so effing cool that it makes me all warm and fuzzy inside . . .

An Ultimate Insider just sent this to the 312DD inbox:

"Charlie Trotter bought out Boka's whole restaurant tonight for his holiday party."

I really hope they get to taste Executive Chef Giuseppe Tentori's famous Bigoli Pasta!

Celeb Magnet Sunda Tops 312DD Dining Poll

Sunda came out on top in 312 Dining Diva's third-annual "Best New Restaurant Poll." (Photo: Sunda)

It's no surprise Sunda was voted Chicago's Best New Restaurant by readers of 312 Dining Diva.

Owned by the team behind the equally successful Underground and Rockit Bar & Grill, the Asian-focused eatery in River North offers all the elements of a dynamite destination: celeb appeal, great buzz, a uniquely exotic design scheme, and a top-notch chef in Rodelio Aglibot.

Sunda Executive Chef Rodelio Aglibot. (Photo: Sunda)

Since opening in March, Sunda has received big props from local and national critics for Aglibot's take on modern Asian fare, including a three-star review from the Chicago Tribune's Phil Vettel.

Another big honor for Aglibot this year was his third stint cooking at the esteemed James Beard House in New York, where he whipped up signature dishes like Petite Lemongrass Beef Lollipops with sweet Chile glaze and Mama Sally’s Honey and Candied Ginger–Braised Midwest Long Ribs with Lobster-Scented Arroz Caldo. (He's also set to star in his own travel food show on The Learning Channel in 2010.)

Hollywood A-Lister Jessica Alba was one of many stars to dine at Sunda in 2009.

Dishes like those make us understand why there has always been a steady stream of A-List stars coming through, including the likes of Jessica Alba, Ben Stiller, Jeremy Piven, Emily Blunt, John Krasinski, Kevin Bacon, Alex Rodriguez, Derek Jeter, Kate Walsh, Tyrese Gibson, Jamie Foxx, Angela Bassett, Ali Larter, Katy Perry, Pharrell Williams and Randy Jackson.

In 2010, look for Sunda to get even more crowded as the newly launched Sunda Social takes off.

The after-work affair happens 5-7pm Monday through Friday in the lounge, bar, sushi bar and at communal tables, creating an awesome opportunity to network with new folks. Guests get sushi/sake pairing combos for $20, including one flight of sake paired with chef’s choice of sushi.