Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Lite Bites: What Your Favorite Chefs & Mixologists Are Up To Around Town This Week

Charles Joly of Aviary.

Bring on the sunshine . . .

• Beer enthusiasts should get excited about this: Aviary's Charles Joly has collaborated with Evil Twin Brewing and Against the Grain Brewery to create a porter using grilled corn husks. Check out the video.

American Junkie is set to open Wednesday, March 20. In addition to acquiring former City Tavern/Sepia chef Kendal Duque as head chef, the River North-based restaurant has also recently tapped Bob Zrenner (Hubbard Inn/Black Bull Tapas) and Tony Potempa (Boarding House) to join the team. Zrenner will serve as #2 in the kitchen, while Potempa will head the cocktail program, which will focus on lighter, California-inspired cocktails. There will also be two cocktails on tap at all times.

Bang Bang Pie Shop's Lavender Coconut Cream Pie. (Photo: Bang Bang Pie Shop)

Ryan McCaskey and his Acadia team won first place at the third-annual Chowdah Fest Monday.

Theo Gilbert is doing an Irish-and-Italian-themed pop-up restaurant called Red-Headed Step Child at his Italian-inspired restaurant Ripasso for several weeks. The project is set to go out with a bang when he collaborates with Michael Carlson (Schwa) during a charity chef battle. I'll tell you more about that event when details are available.

• March 14 is National Pi (3.14) Day. Something tells me that the chef-driven, Logan Square-based Bang Bang Pie Shop is going to be insanely busy . . .

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