Wednesday, November 13, 2013

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

Frontier's Brian Jupiter (Photo: Frontier)

It's been an exhausting week for all.

Who isn't obsessed with New Orleans these days?! The Saints continue to kick ass in the NFL. Top Chef's current season completely embraces its culture as chefs continue to battle it out. And American Horror Story: Coven not only focuses on the Fourth Quarter's past and present, but it also features fierce witches taking on voodoo priestesses.

All that NOLA talk has got to make you hungry for some gumbo, and Frontier chef Brian Jupiter is just the man for the job.

The Bayou native hosts Chicago's first-ever gumbo cookoff, which pits professional chefs against home cooks. It's going to be quite interesting to see who comes out on top, seeing how Jupiter has recruited some of the best chefs in the biz, including Steve Danan (Trenchermen), David Dworshak (Takito Kitchen), John Gatsos (Tavern on Rush), Lamar Moore (Tanta) and Justin White (Small Bar).

Yours Truly emcees the festivities (Hey, I'm there for the gumbo!), which is free and takes place 2-6pm Nov. 17. There will also be food and drink specials. See you there!

Union Sushi's Chef Chao (Photo: Union Sushi)

Mannnnnnnn, Michelin is sooooo Tuesday morning. THIS IS WHAT IS HOT: Steakhouse theme at NEXT.

Union Sushi's Chef Chao is whipping up house-made ramen this fall. Get ready for chicken ramen with bits of crispy chicken skin, daikon, napa cabbage, garlic oil, green onion and cilantro as well as short rib ramen with shiitake mushrooms, onion, pickled chili, tofu, napa cabbage, ginger, grilled tomato, parmesan and green onion.

Quartino chef John Coletta (Photo: John Coletta)

Quartino's John Coletta teams up with Check, Please! diva Catherine De Orio for an event that explores their rich Italian heritage. The event includes Piemonte and Veneto wines paired with a multi-course menu featuring "La Panissa," an old-world Italian preparation of rice. It's all inclusive at $60, and tickets are limited. Call the restaurant to get tickets. 7pm Nov. 19.

• The Art Institute's newest exhibition, Art and Appetite: American Painting, Culture, and Cuisine, kicked off Tuesday. What's cool is that you'll get an opportunity to "eat your way through" it during a special menu in the museum's cafe. That goes down 5-7:30pm Dec. 7 with 12 courses inspired by the works. It's $38 per person or $66 per couple.

• And Province and Sprout shutter, according to Eater Chicago.

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