Thursday, January 24, 2013

Michael McDonald Landed at Gold Coast Hot Spot Luxbar--Eight Months Ago

Photo via Time Out Chicago

The mad talented Michael McDonald—the chef, not the singer—was ousted from one sixty blue a year ago as it made its transition to belly Q. We hadn't heard from him since until Thursday when we ran into him at Luxbar.

McDonald tells 312DD that he's been the popular Gold Coast restaurant's executive chef for about eight months, but he wanted to play it low key and work on the menus behind the scenes.

Luxbar, which is owned by the group behind Gibsons, Hugo's Frog Bar, Quartino and RL, is quite the transition for the classically trained, fine-dining chef whose resume boasts high-profile positions at Everest, Restaurant Charlie Trotter (Las Vegas), a couple of Four Seasons properties, and Nobu at the Shore Club Hotel in Miami.

In his new home, the menu caters to the bar-hopping and sports-loving crowds who come for the sliders (turkey, buttermilk fried chicken, blackened tilapia) and buttermilk fried chicken. McDonald's been tinkering around with the menu, adding a more farm-focused approach with local ingredients. Nothing too fancy, but hey, he says he's very happy working for the restaurant group and he's got a full house every day.

Now, that's every chef's dream!

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