Jump to content


  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Profile Information

  • Gender

Recent Profile Visitors

The recent visitors block is disabled and is not being shown to other users.

ad.mich's Achievements


Cleaner (68/123)

  1. Food quality at the Bavarian Inn seems to be an intermittent focus. That location gives them a bit of a captive audience and the menu has changed over the years pretty drastically based on their chef/owners whim. At various times it's been local-centric, German focused, generic hotel/wedding food, or some combination of the three. I've admittedly had a few decent meals there, but other times I would have been better off just getting Pepperoni Rolls from the Sheetz down the street. The basement bar remains a fun place for a drink and a pretzel though.
  2. This is a good read, but I think there's another piece of the response that isn't discussed. When the scoop shops reopened there was a noticeable shift in the menu a little closer to the middle of the road. Jeni's has always had some out there flavors, but now there were one or two less on the menu to make way for a cookies & cream or rocky road. The shop near me has a perpetual line that's mostly kids and I doubt they're going for the goat cheese and cherries. I'd guess there were some capitulations made in the name of business that helped them stumble on an insanely successful menu formula that has served them very well. ...and the more out there stuff still absolutely bumps. A relative brought a pint of the seasonal cognac gingerbread to a get together the night before Thanksgiving and damn that's some really good stuff.
  3. I did a blowout dinner at Best Friend with a large group of people a few months ago and it was a massive hit. The table ranged from novices/basic eaters to total food snobs (cough) and everyone was raving. The menu has a few different prix fixe options, and when we tried to go that route for the table the server waved us off and said that unless we really wanted 12 orders of kalbi we'd be better off just letting her order with that same budget. We gave her the wheel and ended up making our way through about 1/2 the menu. It was awesome, and we probably wouldn't have been mad with 8 orders of kalbi tbh. As already mentioned, it's loud as hell in there. My LV Crack Shack experience was pretty bad, but they were still in their opening month so I can give them a pass. Cheap beer there at least.
  4. I was at Cushwa two weeks back myself and really enjoyed it. While many of the beers are the of the moment style of 8% (and higher) hazy IPAs, there was a biscuity lager I enjoyed (and forget the name of). Also the namesake Cush may be listed as a NEIPA but had the initial bite, smoother finish, and more reasonable ABV (6.5) of a feisty pale ale.
  5. The 29-year old chef has written a memoir titled "Notes From A Young Black Chef". He is out there promoting it before the release and definitely doing his thing, notably calling out abuse he experienced in early jobs and offering dirt on the Shaw Bijou debacle. Kind of surprised no one has started a topic on this, but maybe everyone is scared to wade into the pool?
  6. lekkerwijn, if you're reading, you may want to proceed with caution. The executive chef at BoB left at the start of the year, they have not replaced him yet, and the current menu looks as uninspiring as you'd expect given those circumstances
  7. Oh Don. This is not a great article. Plenty of others have torn into it but I can't let this just fester at the bottom of the Chicago page like the fart it is. From the opening premise that winning Beard Awards and gaining Michelin Stars are a proper barometer for judging the current state of a city's food scene (which I'd think any Washingtonian would challenge) this piece is loaded with questionable and contradictory takes. Chicago needs more locally resourced restaurants but we also need... better mid-level priced sushi? He seems to have issues with the fact that we don't have a one stop shop street of international restaurants similar to Buford Hwy or Wilson Blvd? That's more an indictment of how this city grew up and evolved (and by that I mean thoroughly, completely, ruthlessly segregated), but it doesn't mean the food isn't out there if you want to look for it. The claim that there' aren't second generation Americans pushing forward their native cuisines (because these are apparently the only people allowed to do so?) is proper BS. Restaurants like Mi Tocaya, Haisous, SKY, A Place by Damao, Passerotto, Parachute, and Bayan Ko are/have been doing that for a while now (and many have racked up national attention while doing so). If Devon Ave isn't pushing things forward for Indian food (a fair statement even if the quality is still there), a 20 minute drive to Schaumburg can blow his damn mind. The food he describes is definitely happening here, leading me and others to think there's a questionable subtext here of what the author seems to think these sorts of restaurants have to look like to make an impact. Lost in this bullshit are a few valid points: our street food scene is crippled by regulations and the represents a real missed opportunity. A good banh mi is hard to find (and pho, which he doesn't even go into, is even harder). The West Loop is fading in relevancy, but whether that's really a bad thing or not is debatable. New restaurants are now opening elsewhere. Our media is loathe to criticize, which might have inspired this piece in the first place. A lot of his critiques seem to come from the perspective of his time in Atlanta, which has embraced "New South Cooking" fully and completely. No one will confuse for Chicago for Atlanta, or vice versa. Chicago restaurants don't typically name every farmer or heirloom veg variety on their menus as is more common in Atlanta, but that doesn't necessarily mean everything is coming from Sysco. It's a regional difference. I would humbly suggest that he should be taking his points of initial frustration as an opportunity to dig deeper, because the answers to most of his questions are out there if he really wants to look. If this is what a town looks like when the party's over, I'm pretty pumped for when the next one starts.
  8. No one responded the last time this was tried but I'll bump it up. Heading to VA Beach for work for a few nights and would love suggestions on any new good places to eat.
  9. Good lord, that Chicago Trib "story" makes the Forbes one look Pulitzer-worthy. They better be paying their employees those final paychecks because they are obviously paying their PR still.
  10. I"m torn on this one. In Chicago, there are several local breweries doing traditional styles only (or the overwhelming majority of their output) and doing quite well. They are decidedly not trying for national market domination though. That being said, there's a real market for traditional beer done well, even if it just means you're a medium fish in a large pond. If anything, I'd say the biggest hurdle is that making a damn good kolsch is waaaaay harder than dumping a shit ton of hops in your batch and chasing the dragon. Sours and stouts have their place in the food chain but there's always going to be people for each who just can't get into them for various reasons. I know too many people who love one and can't stand the other.
  11. Junebaby is like Roses Luxury was a few years back - peak hype and no reservations, meaning people lining up well before they open. That's about as kid-unfriendly as it gets. Eduardo's other spot, Salare, takes reservations and has a kids menu. It's also awesome, just not the simulation glitch that a restaurant like Junebaby is up in the PNW. Just seeing the words Un Bien has me salivating, for what it's worth.
  12. I would *love* to read that. The hop insanity kind of is what it is. There will always be trends, but Big Hop comes back wave after wave. I always compare their overuse to the bacon fetish of early oughts chefs - an easily understood concept for customers that (in lesser hands) also has a convenient side effect of smoothing over less than perfect craftsmanship. Otherwise though, I'd actually say the American beer market is in the sulky teenager phase. Confused, excited, spastic, and prone to spontaneous anger and wild mood swings. Not a girl, not yet a woman. I guess that means in a few years we'll have reached the shaved head, barefoot in the gas station bathroom phase.
  13. Yes there is plenty of money in beer, but for years and years there was no need to spend it in a payola fashion (and very few outlets to do so even if you wanted to). Who would you even be trying to influence? Wine Spectator, Food & Wine, and Wine Enthusiast were all founded in the 70s, and there are dozens of smaller outlets that were established and grew below them in the decades to follow. If you add in the regular wine columns you see in newspapers and then all the micro coverage, and you're looking at an entire well established (and well fed) ecosystem of press coverage. What existed of the US beer world to cover in the 70s? The 80s? Hell, even by the 90s you had Michael Jackson's beer book and not really much else until the middle of the decade. In the 20th century the budgets spent in the wine world on buying off tasters and sham junkets could be spent in the beer world on building Bud Light Island or Spuds McKenzie's Whassupatopia. To some degree that's changing, but I don't think there's the same bang for your buck in the beer world (yet) because no one has really captured the eyes and ears of that market. The rise of the craft beer world coinciding with the downfall of print media didn't help things, and a lot of what passes for independent coverage are glorified blog postings and bearded half-in-the-bag Youtube 'content'. There are a handful of well done websites covering beer but it's a real scattered market with no real clear industry leader. Beer drinkers would generally rather post on forums. Sometimes drinkers like to hear themselves talk, I guess.
  14. You're goddamn right there is. It's nowhere near the wine world in it's sophistication (and budgets) but it's absolutely there and growing rapidly.
  15. That neck of the woods is kind of tourist central so the food closest to there is generally what you'd expect. Two places very close to you that are worth checking out are Tortoise Club (a buffed up, downtown Chicago restaurant doing Milwaukee Supper Club food) and Beacon Tavern (although maybe too similar to Publican). Your three picks above are all rock solid. I'd do Spiaggia over Sogno (and be very happy with it) but I'd do Monteverde over both. Imperial Lamian is pretty close and does high end dumpling focused Chinese. It's good if you don't have sticker shock. There's not really a ton of nose to tail going on in Chicago proper right now, but Purple Pig and Girl and The Goat always have it going on, and both are delicious consistent standbys I'd happily recommend for anyone. For lunch I'd think about Revival Food Hall (it has an absolute murderer's row of food options, branches of some of my favorite spots in Chicago all executing well) or Tempesta, which makes some of the best salumi in the city and then stuffs their own sandwiches full with it. I haven't had a bad thing there yet.
  • Create New...