| Dec 23, 2011
| 11:00 AM
At the time of our interview, "Chopped" judge Alex Guarnaschelli and her co-star Geoffrey Zakarian were both still in the running on Food Network's uber-chef cook-off, "The Next Iron Chef: Super Chefs." Despite my earnest predictions that one or the other...
| Jan 5, 2012
Vera is a Spanish restaurant that feels like a local pub. That's not a complaint.
Though the menu bulges with Iberico hams, Manchego cheese and Spanish chorizo, the sense of place emanating from the unpretentious restaurant is sweet home, Chicago....
| Oct 5, 2012
| 2:20 PM
NEW YORK — Wandering through the darkened auditorium of Broadway's Cort Theatre here on a recent Saturday morning felt a lot like a tour of Chicago's off-Loop theater.
Michael Shannon, the former denizen of the Chicago fringe turned TV and movie...
| Oct 26, 2012
| 12:58 PM
So much ink has been spilled chronicling the life and career of Grant Achatz, the most-honored chef and best-known cancer survivor in Chicago, if not the country, one wonders if there are stories left to tell.
Two things suggest that there are. One,...
| May 15, 2012
| 12:57 PM
K, e, double-L, oh, double-Good Grief, what are you people thinking?
Today on Facebook, Alinea partner Nick Kokonas posted a link to snackpicks.com, a recipe website owned by Kellogg's, listing "Chef Grant Actatz' Sweet Potato Toppers."
| Jun 28, 2012
| 8:07 AM
For its latest menu, Next restaurant invested in a special piece of cooking equipment.
A Weber kettle grill.
Standing alongside the recirculating thermal circulators, Anti-Griddles, Sonicpreps and other high-tech gizmos that populate Next's high-tech...
| Feb 22, 2012
Frozen spheres of cheese. Ham-wrapped baguettes containing exactly nothing. An air-filled foam of carrot that still manages to taste like the most intense carrot you've ever eaten.
Part museum exhibit, part history retrospective, Next's latest menu, El...
| Feb 23, 2012
When Charlie Trotter announced, just past the stroke of midnight on New Year's Day, that he would be closing his eponymous Chicago restaurant at the end of August, quite a few people vowed to get to Charlie Trotter's, one last time or even for the very...
| Feb 22, 2012
| 3:21 PM
Next is, without doubt, a unique restaurant. And it requires, for better and for worse, a unique approach to review.
Because Next changes its concept every 13 weeks or so (exception: the El Bulli menu, which launched two weeks ago, continues through...
| Aug 16, 2012
Dale Levitski's career arc is like that of most top chefs. In reverse.
After running a couple of modest Chicago restaurants, Levitski found himself thrust into the spotlight as the surprise pick to succeed Grant Achatz at four-star Trio, and, just as...
| Mar 1, 2012
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.