Friday, January 25, 2008

No end to burger trend, says Time


Even though there was no mention of any high-profile Chicago chefs or restaurants (sniff, sniff) in this Time magazine article on the continuing upscale burger trend, here's five top local picks from 312 Dining Diva:

(22 E. Hubbard St., 312-755-0007): This awesome Aussie version is the Bondi, with bacon, cheddar, beet root, pineapple, fried egg and proper chips.

Five Star Bar & Grill (1424 W. Chicago Ave., 312-850-2555): You get three perfectly cooked mini-burgers served with some of the best hand-cut fries in the city.

Fahrenheit & Celcius Lounge
(1890 West Main St., St. Charles, 630-444-1350): If you're lucky, your amuse might be the truffled beef tartar "burger." It's a tiny, flavor-packed delight that you pop in your mouth in a single bite.

The Gage (24 S. Michigan Ave., 312-372-2979): Their signature burger is a hefty one that comes with melted onion marmalade on a toasted malt roll.

Rockit Bar & Grill (22 W. Hubbard St., 312-645-6000): And the signature, award-winning Rockit Burger is made from Kobe beef, and comes with melted brie, fried shallots and served with yummy truffle fries.

And then there were 3? Edgewater Restaurant Week in the works

In an effort to gain visibility for all the unique dining options in the neighborhood, the Edgewater Chamber or Commerce is planning a meeting to get their own Restaurant Week going soon.

This just arrived in the inbox:

"Edgewater has a wide variety of restaurants and we intend to advertise
this and bring more customers to our community. We are hoping to get
some ideas and suggestions by holding a meeting at 10:00am on February
18th or 19th. This meeting will be open to people from all of the
restaurants in the Edgewater area and will be held at a location to be
determined. We hope to have as many people as possible to bring more
customers to Edgewater."

Sounds like a grand idea! For more info, call 773-561-6000.

And don't forget about the other two already in the works.

To the Boards

"BYOB Experiences in Chicago . . . " Chowhound

"Best tamale on the North Side?"

"Best Sushi Restaurant/Bar For Toro?" Chowhound

"Tell me why I should move to Rogers Park?"

How did we NOT make this list?!

Obviously the editors of Men's Health didn't hang out in Chicago on the weekend when they took this study of the Top 10 most dangerously drunk cities in America.

Rush Street, Division Street, Lincoln Avenue: Stand UP!

What the critics are saying . . .

. . . about:

Lockwood (17 E. Monroe St., 312-917-3404): ". . . . So is roasted Poulet Rouge Fermier ($28), that all-natural, heritage chicken. It is textbook crisp, browned and juicy, on an intense natural jus. On the side are decadent Lyonnaise potatoes topped by a poached egg that oozes rich yolk over all as you cut into it."—Laura Bianchi (Crain's Chicago Business) Read full review here.

Mythos (2032 W. Montrose Ave., 773-334-2000). "Garlicky, creamy skordalia gives punch when spread on cheesy fried zucchini patties, a.k.a. keftedes; grilled octopus proves tender at center and charred at the edges; spinach and feta–stuffed spanakopita is deliciously flaky and fresh; and loukaniko (sausage made off-site but to the sisters’ specifications) is the best I’ve had locally, char-grilled and juicy, with bright notes of orange zest."—Heather Shouse (Time Out Chicago) Read full review here.

Volo Restaurant Wine Bar (2008 W. Roscoe St., 773-348-4600). "The bubbly flight, which includes samples of Cava wine and champagne, and the food-loving flight, make perfect companions to the delicately seared halibut and rare sliced beef with fennel, shaved fennel and spicy greens. The true stars are the melts-in-your-mouth mussels floating in a garlic, butter and white wine sauce and the ahi tuna tataki served with marinated anchovies."—(Chicago CitySearch) Read full review here.

Vong's Thai Kitchen (6 W. Hubbard St., 312-644-8664). "The strength of the kitchen at VTK comes out in the curry dishes and pad thai. Panang chicken, for example, was great. If you like your curry to make your eyeballs sweat, then ask for it 'extra hot.' Slices of tender chicken ('pulled chicken,' the menu notes) were awash in a peanut curry that had been laced with kaffir lime for background flavor. Peas, snow peas and strips of red bell pepper added the perfect mix of texture and accent."—Pat Bruno (Chicago Sun-Times) Read full review here.