Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Top local chefs hit NRA in May

Gale Gand, executive pastry chef/partner of Tru and host of Food Network's "Sweet Dreams"

They're whizzes in the kitchen, so if you'd like to learn the secrets of top culinary kings and queens, head to the Celebrity Book Signings & NRA Show Bookstore in May.

As part of the National Restaurant Association Restaurant, Hotel-Motel Show (May 16-19), local and national chefs will make appearances throughout the event, including:

Stephanie Izard, May 16 at 11am: The Season Four winner of Bravo's "Top Chef" and owner/chef of The Drunken Goat (opening fall 2009), Izard will be signing Top Chef: The Cookbook. She'll also hold a culinary showcase in the NRA Show Culinary Scene later at 3:30pm.

Rick Bayless, May 16 at 2pm: Award-winning chef/restaurateur, cookbook author and host of Mexico—One Plate at a Time on PBS, Bayless is behind Frontera Grill and Tobolobampo. He also authored Authentic Mexican: Regional Cooking from the Heart of Mexico, One Plate and Mexican Everyday. Check him out also in the NRA Show Culinary Scene at 12:30pm.

Daniel Boulud, May 17 at 12:30pm: Boulud is chef-owner of The Dinex Group, made up of Feast & FĂȘtes catering company and nine award-winning restaurants, including the renowned DANIEL and the Feast & catering company. He also wrote six books, including Braise: A Journey Through International Cuisine, CafĂ© Boulud Cookbook, Letters to a Young Chef, Daniel Boulud Cooking in New York City and Daniel's Dish: Entertaining at Home with a Four Star Chef. He'll also participate in the NRA Show General Session and Keynote Executive Panel at 2pm.

Marcus Samuelsson, May 17, 1:30pm: He's the exec chef at NYC's Aquavit and Riingo, and Chicago's C-House, host of Inner Chef on the Discovery Home Channel, and corporate chef of Townhouse Restaurant Group. He authored En Smakreasa, Aquavit, Street Food and The Soul of a New Cuisine: A Discovery of the Foods and Flavors of Africa. Samuelsson will also hold a culinary showcase in the NRA Show Culinary Scene at 12:30pm.

Art Smith, May 18 at noon: Chef/owner of Table Fifty-Two in Chicago and Art and Soul in Washington, D.C., Smith wrote Back to the Family: Food Tastes Better Shared with the Ones You Love, Kitchen Life and Back to the Table: The Reunion of Food and Family.

Takashi Yagahashi, May 18 at 2pm: Renowned chef and restaurateur, Yagahashi owns Takashi Restaurant in Chicago and operates Noodles at Macys on State Street. His first book, Takashi's Noodles, will be available at the 2009 NRA Show. Also, look for him in the NRA Show Culinary Scene at 12:30pm.

Gale Gand, May 19 at 1pm: Gand is executive pastry chef/partner at Tru and host of Food Network's Sweet Dreams. She'll sign copies of her new book, Gale Gand's Brunch!: Fantastic Recipes for the Weekend's Best Meal, Chocolate and Vanilla and Gale Gand’s Just a Bite.

BIN 36 introduces $9 lunch

Popular wine-focused eatery BIN 36 celebrates 10 years with the $9 lunch in April (Photo: BIN 36)

When you work in the downtown area, pickings are slim on the cheap side unless you're willing to go fast food.

That's why 312DD's particularly excited about the brand-new lunch deal at BIN 36.

Starting today—and for the rest of the month—the wine-focused favorite's celebrating its 10-year anniversary by offering a $9 lunch deal. Choose one of their hand-crafted sandwiches/salads and soft drink (no wine, boo!), which includes grilled cheese (cheddar, Swiss and goat cheese with white truffle oil, caramelized onions & toasted pine nuts on sourdough), wood-grilled burger, classic hot corned beef and a classic Cobb salad.

With this hookup, we could go every day!

Or, if you're looking to mix it up every now and then, check out even more deals at Blackbird and Eve.