| Jan 11, 2012
| 10:08 PM
Ten weeks into these Top Chef recaps, as I once again sputter out a few hundred words on the show, I find myself writing less about the competition itself and more on philosophical matters.
(Pardon the pretension, allow me to sew a leather elbow patch...
| Jan 13, 2012
| 11:42 AM
There were two days this week where the Chicago Tribune featured great dining and culture roundups. I like reading those kinds of sections, because I always feel like my cultural incursions are so widely spaced that I'm always starting from scratch....
| Jan 16, 2012
| 12:24 PM
2010 was the year Chicagoland witnessed its barbecue boom, when nearly a dozen smoked meats purveyors opened from Wheaton to Rogers Park.
Among the more successful and highly-received restaurants is Highland Park's Real Urban Barbecue, and this spring,...
| Jan 18, 2012
| 9:21 PM
This was my favorite"Top Chef"episode this season. Void of manufactured rivalries or a clear-cut winner/loser, we witnessed the show at its most elemental and compelling: seven chefs cooking their hearts out, fulfilling the mission of the show’s...
| Jan 25, 2012
| 8:40 PM
In honor of our fallen samurai chef, a series of haikus for Chicago's most lovable molecular gastronomist:
Chris Jones of Moto
You're Padma's "Lovable Nerd"
Melding science, food
We've bonded with you
You're sodium alginate
We're calcium salt ...
| Jan 28, 2012
| 11:58 AM
The Jean Banchet Awards, the local Emmy's of the restaurant world, were announced in a lavish ceremony hosted by Steve Dolinsky and Alpana Singh at the Fairmont Hotel Friday night. The awards were part of the 15th annual Grand Chefs Gala. Chef Jimmy...
| Feb 1, 2012
| 7:59 AM
Thursday's Dining cover story is our profile on chef Paul Kahan as he and his team prepare to open Publican Quality Meats, the Fulton Market butcher shop. A few newsworthy items from the piece:
*** As we reported earlier, Publican Quality Meats is...
| Feb 1, 2012
| 9:09 PM
We’ve reached the equivalent of Mile 22 in the Top Chef marathon. Vision gets blurry, the lactic acids are burning holes through our calves, and everything around you starts to feel ... weird.
We know the show’s taping schedule is...
| Feb 8, 2012
| 8:57 PM
For the first 11 episodes of Top Chef, Beverly Kim’s journey was a Greek tragedy. Castigated, chastised, verbally beaten down by fellow contestants, she was booted in an episode where no one deserved elimination.
In that Charlize Theron-starred...
| Feb 9, 2012
Of all the reality competition dreck infesting TV screens, Top Chef is one of its better shows (I still think The Amazing Race is the gold standard). Unlike singing competitions where talent might be God given, or insect-eating shock challenges where fear...
| Mar 1, 2012
| 8:54 AM
Spiaggia chef Sarah Grueneberg didn’t win the title on “Top Chef: Texas,” but she did make an impressive showing on last night’s finale. The judges said that her and winner Paul Qui’s food was perhaps the best in the show&...