Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Chicago represents again on 'Top Chef'

Radhika Desai of Between Boutique Café & Lounge (Photo: Bravo) breaks the news first (312 Dining Diva is the first Chicago media outlet to bring you the news!) of our very own Radhika Desai of Between Boutique Café & Lounge starring on the fifth season of Bravo's "Top Chef: New York." Congrats, girl!

"Rad is a blessing to us as well as our little nocturnal café," said Between owner, Carl Anderson. "She truly is the heart of our restaurant."

At Between, Rad uses the small-plate concept to experiment with exotic spices and flavorful combinations, which allows guests to taste a variety of food without being overwhelmed in a single dining experience. Popular signature dishes include Lobster Trifecta (lobster empanadas, lobster and bacon mac and cheese and lobster cakes) and Duck-Duck Goose (leg of duck with sweet potato pancakes, gooseberry jam and orange black pepper sauce).

Get the entire list of this season's "Top Chef" participants here. The show premieres at 9pm Nov. 12.

And now the fun begins . . .


This is amazing! The Cubs and the White Sox are both in the playoffs for the first time in more than 100 years. Now isn't that enough reason to celebrate today?!

Take your pick of lively places to watch the first Cubs play-off game tonight: Head to usual suspects like Tavern on Rush and P.J. Clarke's, or make a move to new schoolers Old Oak Tap, Angels & Mariachis or Coach House.

Also happening tonight:

Your last shot at getting discounted VIP tickets to the annual Meals on Wheels Celebrity Chef Gala (Oct. 17) happens at Fleming's Steakhouse & Wine Bar. Maven hosts this cocktail party, offering guests appetizers and a sampling of wine. The $15 donation goes to Meals on Wheels. 6-9pm. Can't make the party tonight?! You can still get tix here.

Hosted by rock star Pete Wentz, GenArt's sixth-annual Fresh Faces in Fashion officially kicks off Fashion Focus Week. Chicago-based designers will be featured, including Wentz's own Clandestine Industries. After-party occurs at Exchange West (1376 W. Carroll Ave.). 6:30pm at the Tent at Chase Promenade North in Millennium Park (between Michigan and Columbus). $60-$135 (a portion of proceeds benefit Gen Art Foundation). Call 312-229-1701 for tix.

Speaking of Wentz, he's set to also host Live Band Karaoke at his rock-flavored club, Angels & Kings. He's hangin' with some of the Elite models from the GenArt show (wtf is Ashlee?!), who should be a nice edition to the weekly event. A:M Ultra Premium hosts the party with comped cocktails . . . drink up and bring out your inner "American Idol." 10pm-2am. No cover.