Friday, October 20, 2017

Chicken and Veggie Spinach Wrap

I'm such a bread lover and I'd usually choose a thick sourdough or a marbled rye or a crusty Italian slice before using a wrap, but you know...you gotta keep it under control unless you want to look as round as one of those big fresh loaves - you know those round and toasty ones that are so good when they are warmed and have such a good crunch on the outside and are so soft and fluffy on the inside and...wait, where was I going with this? Oh, yeah, so bread is good, but too much of it is bad, so once in a while a wrap is a good substitute. 

On my shopping trip to Aldi last week, I picked up some spinach herb wraps. I love anything spinach,  so was looking forward to using it. For lunch one day I pulled one out and slathered on some sun-dried tomato pesto then added layers of arugula, spinach, cucumbers and grape tomatoes along with some chicken breast and some shredded Swiss and gruyere blend. It made for a delicious light lunch with lots of the veggies I love and the spinach wrap was so good I forgot how much I love bread. :) 



MICHELIN Stars Announced for 2018; 25 Chicago Establishments Make the List

The highly anticipated MICHELIN Guide Chicago goes on sale next Thursday, but the star selections were announced today. Twenty five restaurants have made the list, two of them of the highest distinction at 3 stars - longtime recipients Alinea and Grace. There is one newcomer among the four two-starred restaurants, Smyth, in the West Loop.

Nineteen places have been designated at one star with two of them new to the list, Elske and Entente. Read on for the full press release and list of Chicago recipients.


Smyth Earns Two Stars in New Selection MICHELIN Guide Chicago

CHICAGO, Oct. 20, 2017 – Michelin today announced its highly anticipated annual star selections for the eighth edition of the MICHELIN Guide Chicago 2018.
This year’s selection highlights 25 establishments that have been awarded one or more Michelin stars. Alinea and Grace, respectively led by chefs Grant Achatz and Curtis Duffy retain three stars, the highest recognition offered by the guide. 
The restaurant Smyth located in West Loop, earns two stars for 2018. Owned by the talented husband and wife John Shields and Karen Urie Shields, Smyth, which can be found upstairs from the dual concept Smyth & the Loyalist, offers a unique and inventive cuisine. 
“Chefs John and Karen Shields have remarkable resumes at the best restaurants across the country. But what they have built in their own kitchen is even more remarkable,” said Michael Ellis, international director of the MICHELIN Guide. “Anchored by quality produce from The Farm, dining at Smyth is a naturally delicious and beautiful experience.”
In total, there are four restaurants awarded two stars in the MICHELIN Guide Chicago 2018. Among them, Sixteen, located in River North, retains its two-star distinction after a change in the kitchen. The new Chef Nick Dostal has taken the menu in a new direction with influences of France, Italy and Asia.
Chicago is home to 19 one-starred restaurants, of which two are new: Elske and Entente.

Danish for “love,” Elske is the newly opened venture of husband-and-wife team chefs David and Anna Posey. Both have experience at Michelin-starred restaurants in Chicago, and together they have created a unique and striking experience in the West Loop, mixing Scandinavian and contemporary American influences.
At Entente, which means “friendly understanding,” guests are invited to a service of high quality food and delectable cocktails. Chef Brian Fisher unites with pastry chef Mari Katsumura and owner Ty Fujimura for a creative yet classic menu that changes based on inspiration and input from the team.
The MICHELIN Guide Chicago 2018 goes on sale Oct. 26 at a suggested retail price of $18.99. 

Chicago MICHELIN Guide 2018 Starred Establishments

Three Stars
Exceptional cuisine, worth a special journey
ESTABLISHMENT
AREA
CHEF
Alinea
Lincoln Park & Old Town
Grant Achatz
Grace
West Loop
Curtis Duffy

Two Stars
Excellent cuisine, worth a detour

ESTABLISHMENT
AREA
NEW
Acadia
Chinatown & South

Oriole
West Loop

Sixteen
River North

Smyth
West Loop
NEW

One Star
High quality cooking, worth a stop

ESTABLISHMENT
AREA
NEW
Band of Bohemia
Andersonville, Edgewater & Uptown

Blackbird
West Loop

Boka
Lincoln Park & Old Town

Dusek's (Board & Beer)
Pilsen, University Village & Bridgeport

EL Ideas
Pilsen, University Village & Bridgeport

Elizabeth
Andersonville, Edgewater & Uptown

Elske
West Loop
NEW
Entente
Lakeview & Wrigleyville
NEW
Everest
Loop

Goosefoot
Andersonville, Edgewater & Uptown

GreenRiver
Loop

NAHA
River North

North Pond
Lincoln Park & Old Town

Parachute
Humboldt Park & Logan Square

Roister
West Loop

Schwa
Bucktown & Wicker Park

Sepia
West Loop

Spiaggia
Gold Coast

Topolobampo
River North


Friday, October 13, 2017

54 Bib Gourmand Restaurants Named for Chicago's 2018 Guide

Au Cheval, known for their signature burgers, elevated diner experience
and classic cocktail menu is listed as one of 54 2018 Michelin Bib
Gourmand restaurants in Chicago.
Not everyone has the financial means to experience Chicago's exclusive Michelin-Starred restaurants, but that doesn't mean that there aren't an abundance of fabulous, creative, hip dining spots that are accessible in the city for enjoying a good meal. If you're looking for something trendy or with an upscale feel that serves food to knock your socks off, but is yet affordable, you can count on the Michelin Guide Chicago 2018 to fill you on the places to go for a great meal that won't break the bank with their list of Bib Gourmand Restaurants. 

Big Gourmand-selected restaurants typically serve two courses and a glass of wine or dessert for $40 or less. Chicago is fortunate to have 54 that are currently on the list, including eight new additions. Take a peek at some highlighted establishments and scroll down for the full list. And in just a week the star selections will be released, so stay tuned to see which places stay on top and what newbies have joined the group. For more on the Michelin Guide, click here

Which Bib Gourmand Restaurants have you been to? And which are your favorites?


Michelin publishes list of 54 Bib Gourmand’ restaurants
CHICAGO, Oct. 13, 2017  Michelin today announced the restaurants that have earned the designation of Bib Gourmand in the eighth edition of the MICHELIN Guide Chicago 2018, including eight noteworthy additions. 
Across the city, Michelin inspectors found authentic international flavors abounding. Logan Square, for example, has become a hotbed for delicious Mexican cuisine while exceptional spices from India and creative combinations from Vietnam have delighted diners north and south of the Loop.
In Logan Square, Giant, cozy brainchild of chefs Jason Vincent and Ben Lustbader, packs flavor and fun into all of the dishes while True Food Kitchen is pioneering healthy and vegetable-forward fare in River North under the direction of Sam Fox and Dr. Andrew Weil. 
HaiSous in Pilsen is a delectable Vietnamese concept by chefs Thai Dang and his wife Danielle Pizzutillo-Dang. Mango Pickle in Andersonville is traditional but unique and a much-loved new venture from chef and co-owner Marisa Paolillo. Along with her husband, Nakul Patel, Chef Paolillo has brought a new wave of creativity and contemporaneity to the Indian cuisine scene in Chicago.
Mi Tocaya in Logan Square is the first restaurant venture of acclaimed chef Diana Dávila. Serving up regional Mexican cuisine at great value, this authentic and fun restaurant is not to be missed while visitors to Quiote, also in Logan Squarecan appreciate the dedication to Mexican techniques and cuisine from former Salsa Truck owner and self-taught chef, Dan Salls.
Pleasant House Pub offers the best of bakery and beer under a new roof in Pilsen. Led by chefs Art and Chelsea Jackson, the recently relocated project is serving up beloved Royal pies alongside Pleasant House Farm’s produce and a line of Pleasant House Pub beers brewed by Whiner Beer.
The 2018 Bib Gourmand restaurants are scattered across Chicago’s diverse neighborhoods and are recognized for offering great, quality food for good value at locations the famously anonymous inspectors favor most. These restaurants typically serve two courses and a glass of wine or dessert for $40 or less (excluding tax and gratuities).
Michelin’s famously anonymous inspectors dine their way across four cities in the United States ― New York, Chicago, San Francisco and Washington, D.C. ― but apply the same rigorous standards and methodology to each of their evaluations, and they always pay their bills in full. 
While the renowned Michelin stars remain the most celebrated international distinction in the MICHELIN Guide, the Bib Gourmand is a highly desired honor among restaurateurs and one that is recognized by the many people who seek quality food at a reasonable price.
The 2018 Michelin stars  selection for Chicago will be announced on Friday, Oct. 20, and the MICHELIN Guide will go on sale on Oct. 26 for a suggested retail price of $18.99.  
2018 MICHELIN GUIDE CHICAGO
BIB GOURMANDS 
ESTABLISHMENT
AREA
NEW
Angry Crab (The)
Andersonville, Edgewater & Uptown

Arami
Bucktown & Wicker Park

Au Cheval
West Loop

Avec
West Loop

bellyQ
West Loop

Bohemian House
River North

Bristol (The)
Bucktown & Wicker Park

Ceres' Table
Lakeview & Wrigleyville

Chilam Balam
Lakeview & Wrigleyville

Cumin
Bucktown & Wicker Park

DeCOLORES
Pilsen, University Village & Bridgeport

Dos Urban Cantina
Humboldt Park & Logan Square

Dove's Luncheonette
Bucktown & Wicker Park

Duck Inn (The)
Pilsen, University Village & Bridgeport

Fat Rice
Humboldt Park & Logan Square

Frontera Grill
River North

Giant
Humboldt Park & Logan Square
NEW
Gilt Bar
River North

Girl & The Goat
West Loop

Green Zebra
Bucktown & Wicker Park

GT Fish & Oyster
River North

HaiSous
Pilsen, University Village & Bridgeport
NEW
Han 202
Pilsen, University Village & Bridgeport

Herb
Andersonville, Edgewater & Uptown

Hopleaf
Andersonville, Edgewater & Uptown

Jaipur
West Loop

Jam
Humboldt Park & Logan Square

Jin Thai
Andersonville, Edgewater & Uptown

Kai Zan
Humboldt Park & Logan Square

Longman & Eagle
Humboldt Park & Logan Square
NEW
Luella's Southern Kitchen
Andersonville, Edgewater & Uptown

Lula Cafe
Humboldt Park & Logan Square

Mana Food Bar
Bucktown & Wicker Park

Mango Pickle
Andersonville, Edgewater & Uptown
NEW
Maude's Liquor Bar
West Loop

mfk.
Lincoln Park & Old Town

Mi Tocaya
Humboldt Park & Logan Square
NEW
MingHin
Chinatown & South

Mott St.
Bucktown & Wicker Park

Nana
Pilsen, University Village & Bridgeport

Pleasant House Pub
Pilsen, University Village & Bridgeport
NEW
Publican (The)
West Loop

Purple Pig (The)
Loop & Streeterville

Quiote
Humboldt Park & Logan Square
NEW
Sabri Nihari
Andersonville, Edgewater & Uptown

San Soo Gab San
Andersonville, Edgewater & Uptown

Smoque BBQ
Humboldt Park & Logan Square

Sol de Mexico 
Humboldt Park & Logan Square

Sushi Dokku
West Loop

Table, Donkey and Stick
Humboldt Park & Logan Square

True Food Kitchen
River North
NEW
TWO
Bucktown & Wicker Park

Untitled Supper Club
River North

Wood
Lakeview & Wrigleyville