Thursday, February 12, 2009

Your shot at the big time?!


This just dropped in the inbox:

"The National Restaurant Association is working with a national food channel production team to develop a short-list of casting prospects of first-time restaurant owners.

Are you opening your very first restaurant but you lack any real restaurant experience? Would you welcome the advice of a professional restaurant consultant? If this is you, we want you to star in an episode of a exciting new TV series for a major food network. In every episode of this captivating and very real one-hour series, the restaurant coach host provides first-time restaurant owners with the tools to open and run a successful business. We are looking for compelling characters with good personal stories and high stakes. Restaurant must be opening in November 2008-September 2009.

First-time owner casting prospects can be new to the restaurant world or a person who's been in the restaurant industry for years but never owned a restaurant. E-mail the individual(s) name, contact details and a brief bio to by 3pm CST, Friday, Feb. 13."

What they're saying on Facebook . . .

The Drawing Room's award-winning mixologist Charles Joly is shaking up something special for Valentine's Day.

Kevin Boehm (Partner Boka/Landmark/Perennial): "Excited about Chicago Chef Week."

Charles Joly (Mixologist/The Drawing Room: "Making lots and lots of marshmallows today . . . (for) Valentine's Day: Corzo Reposado & Grand Marnier infused marshmallows ...nothing's more romantic than gelatin and tequila."

Madrid Perry (Deejay): "Preparing for C'est Dommage (at Sushi Samba)!"

Azimio Rashad a.k.a. "Z" (Mixologist/Manor): Akira Lingerie Fashion Show at Manor tonight."

Debra Sharpe (Restaurateur): "Opening the new Feast in the Gold Coast with a fundraiser next Tuesday for the victims of the Victorian bushfires."

A Weekend with Edge


We've got you covered for Valentine's Day singles bashes, but there's so much more heating up the city in the next few days:


We need more parties like this! Burlesque phenom Angela Eve headlines the The Elysian Ball with multi-disciplinary artist and designer Christophe Gauspohl. They've transformed massive art space Xchange West (344 N. Ogden Ave.) into a modern speakeasy concept, showcasing a variety of erotic-based performances, interactive installations, fashion exhibits, video art and more. Guests are encouraged to dress in black tie or creative gear. Ticket price includes complimentary cocktails, but you can also BYOB. 8pm-1:30am. And if you're still standing at the end of the night, get to the after party at the Flat Iron Building (1565 N. Milwaukee Ave.), where you'll get to meet the performers. That's 2-4am. $35; $60 VIP.

One-half of the award-winning Masters at Work team Little Louie Vega spins a rare set at Crescendo. We love him best for his ground-breaking Nuyorican Soul style, which cranked out hit after hit in the mid- to late-1990s. But look for the hard-working Vega, who hails from Spanish Harlem, to spin classic sounds as well as new flavor. 9pm-2am. $20.

It's time for Spark Ventures' annual wine tasting bash, so hopefully tix are still left. The walkaround event happens at Hafele (154 W. Hubbard St.), with more than 15 wines to sample and paired with light appetizers. The nonprofit Chicago-based Spark Ventures helps vulnerable children around the world. 5:30-8:30pm. $85.


You cannot get any sexier than this: Underground unveils The St. Germain Cocktail tonight. So instead of doing the typical bottle service, indulge in this experience that includes the decadent liqueur by the carafe for $75 (serves six). Do it on the rocks, and for an additional $50, they'll throw in a bottle of bubbly. 10pm-4am.

Valentine's Day weekend wouldn't be the same without a party from HotHouse. They're transforming the upper level of Fizz into HotLoft, featuring global music by deejays Seth Hitsky and Vanessa Beck. The first 50 guests get a free glass of bubbly and handmade candles. 8pm-3am. $5.

Underground unveils The St. Germain Cocktail this weekend. (Photo: Underground)


Yet another sultry set happens at Sinha Elegant Cuisine, with authentic, all-you-can-eat Brazilian cuisine and live Latin music. It's BYOB, so bring your best bottle of bubbly. Stick around for the dance party led by one of the top Brazilian dancers in the city. 6:30pm. $30.

If you're looking for a new friend instead of a new love, head to Bon V for the casting party for season two of Paris Hilton's "MY New BFF." Even though the ditzy heiress will likely not be there, she'll have her scouts from MTV looking for the best candidates. Oh, and fellas, a ton of single women have already RSVPed, so it's something to think about if you're rolling solo. 9pm-3am. $20.


Servers in skimpy Catholic school uniforms. Bottomless Bloody Marys. And pancakes twice the size of your head. That's the theme for the indulgent new Sunday School brunch service at ajasteak on the first floor of the dana hotel. Now that's the perfect way to start off the week! 10am-3pm. Everything's a la carte.


Do some good in the Wicker Park 'hood by helping Between Boutique Café & Lounge pick out its new spring wine list. Hosted by Heritage Wine, the event includes a number of promising vino paired with sweet and savory bites by Executive Chef Radhika Desai, who was also a contestant on the current season of "Top Chef." 6-8pm. Free.