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The fact that chef Paul Virant and I share the same monogram shouldn't confuse anybody, although years back the chef sent me a letter he received from some luckless job applicant who, instead of writing "Paul Virant" in the salutation, used my name...
This time, Next is selling memories. "Childhood," the latest menu from Next, Grant Achatz and Nick Kokonas' shape-shifting restaurant, is a Proustian food journey that, although based on Achatz's and executive chef Dave Beran's childhoods, is designed...
Tags: Chicago Tribune Columnists, Pasta, Soups, Phil Vettel, Marketing
Two weeks ago, Charlie Trotter began his 25th year of business, a superlative achievement by any reckoning. He has won every culinary award worth pursuing, his restaurant continues to hum with business, and he's more or less a newlywed, having married...
When I heard that Acadia, a high-end restaurant, was opening in the South Loop, I sighed. A dining neighborhood that once looked like the second coming of Randolph Street — when Opera, Saiko, Cuatro and Room 21 were doing brisk business —...
Matthias Merges worked at Charlie Trotter's for 14-odd years, and he was the man for most of them, serving as chef de cuisine, corporate chef and finally director of operations. "He was the glue to that place," one restaurateur says, admiringly. That...
Tags: Grant Achatz, Japan, Mushrooms, Restaurants, Next (restaurant)
When word went out that Jason Paskewitz and Ryan O'Donnell were planning Rustic House, a sequel to their successful first venture, the sophisticated Gemini Bistro, I figured the pair wanted a simpler follow-up restaurant, something that would let them...
Every time I figure that Logan Square is done with its boom of independent, unpretentious, quirkily personable restaurants, boom, another one pops up. If I were any other dining neighborhood in the city, I'd be developing a severe case of Logan Envy right...
Tony Mantuano is on a roll. A local politician who flies on Air Force One these days calls him "my favorite chef." He's in the running — again — for the James Beard Foundation's Outstanding Chef award. His executive chef at Spiaggia, Sarah...
Tags: Wines, Bars and Clubs, Spiaggia, Cheese Corn, Sarah Grueneberg
Chicagoans have been enjoying a mini-boom of Spanish flavors of late. First there was Vera, which opened late last year in the Market District, and now Tavernita, which has been packing them in since its January opening in River North. And what a...
Tags: Soups, Tomatoes, Bars and Clubs, Salads, Dining and Drinking
I've been meaning to review Beverly Kim's food ever since September's Chicago Gourmet. I was mightily impressed with her contribution to the food festival: a seafood panna cotta topped with mango gelee and a pair of chilled mussels. Kim further boosted...
Homaro Cantu is a chef defined and limited by his excesses. At Moto, Cantu's science-based culinary sleight-of-hand never fails to dazzle even the most jaded diner, but when the presentation promises more than the dish's flavor delivers — and in...
Wendy Wollenberg, Editor Wendy Wollenberg comes to Chicago Shopping with more than 15 years experience in journalism, communications, marketing, advertising and public relations. Wendy began her career at WHERE Chicago magazine and continued on with...
Nov 3, 2011 |Column| Chicago Tribune
Dec 1, 2011 |Column| Chicago Tribune
Sep 8, 2011 |Story| Chicago Tribune
Feb 9, 2012 |Column| Chicago Tribune
Mar 1, 2012 |Column| Chicago Tribune
Sep 1, 2011 |Column| Chicago Tribune
Oct 13, 2011 |Column| Chicago Tribune
Mar 8, 2012 |Column| Chicago Tribune
Mar 29, 2012 |Column| Chicago Tribune
Apr 5, 2012 |Column| Chicago Tribune
Jul 7, 2011 |Column| Chicago Tribune
Jun 6, 2012 |Story| Chicago Shopping
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