Resolutions.  Every year, I look back on my computer and read my list of goals that I made before the new year.  Last year’s resolutions were probably similar to many of your own….exercise more, watch television less and do more for other people.  (Okay, I didn’t get much exercise in while watching TV but I do think I did more for others.) One of my other resolutions, that shouldn’t surprise you. was food related.   I vowed that in 2012 I would eat at Chef Bill Kim’s newest restaurant, bellyQ (1400 West Randolph Street, Chicago). With less than two weeks left in the year, I wasRead More →

I officially have been going to food events for over year.  And there is one consistent thread that runs through each event…my mouth waters. Whether it is the rich aromas that roam through the halls or my first view of a perfectly plated dish of food…my mouth waters. When I see the chefs walking in their crisp, white coats…my mouth waters.  (Um, wait, I’m not sure I should admit that.) As I walked into Merchandise Mart in Chicago  last night for the Sixth Annual CHILL Event, my mouth watered.  How could it not?  40 of Chicago’s top chefs and 150 Premium wines all brought togetherRead More →

I don’t know what it is about the Food and Wine Chef Showcase in Chicago that makes me smile, it just does.  Not just any smile, but a smile that makes my cheeks hurt. It is the kind of smile that resonates through your whole body and makes you put a spring in your step.  The smile that almost makes you weepy because you can’t believe you are so happy.  It is the smile you get when you are just loving every second of an experience. Last night I had the pleasure of smiling for about 3 hours at the Museum of Contempory Art.  SmilingRead More →

A little fun fact to start off your week…In Chinese astrology, the dragon is the only animal of the zodiac year that is fiction based. So it makes sense that Dragon Ranch Moonshine and BBQ which opened this year seemed too good to be true.  (Now the fun fact makes more sense doesn’t it??)Located in Chicago at 441 North Clark (look for the red trimmed windows), it is a conventional American BBQ with some unconventional Asian twists. Part of the creative and fun Rockit Ranch Production team, Dragon Ranch offers some great American barbeque (pulled pork, ribs, brisket), Asian fare (ramen noodles, bahn mi sandwiches, steamRead More →

The last three days, I have sat down at my computer numerous times to write about the food at Chicago Gourmet this past weekend.  I view my notes and pictures and immediately get hungry and feel the need to snack.  Preferable snack on food from some of the best chefs and restaurants in Chicago. But since I don’t have the luxury of having these resources at my small town back door, I go back to looking at the pictures.  And like a computer’s thesaurus…adjectives like tasty, succulent and scrumptious are bouncing around my head. The adage of “a picture is worth a thousand words” hasRead More →

Dilemma.  I love sushi.  (Okay, that is not a dilemma.)  The problem is that not all of my friends love sushi.  (They have other redeeming qualities.)  So every time I leave my small town, I want to go to a sushi restaurant and they don’t. Well thanks to RA Sushi’s new updated menu, I will never have to choose between my friends and food again.  (Really that decision is easy….sushi wins!) I went to RA Sushi in Lombard, IL this past week with my friend Beth and did something I have never done before.   (And no it doesn’t have anything to do with drinking too much sakeRead More →

“Elevate your soul.”  Is this the motto for a church?  Nope.  How about a beach yoga class?  Nope.  It is the part of The Lucky Monk’s motto “Delicious Food and Drink and a Welcome Warm Enough to Elevate Your Soul.” Named in honor of the Trappist Monks (beer crafting masters), The Lucky Monk located in South Barrington, Illinois, takes pride in their amazing list of house brews, crisp, fresh pizzas and juicy, creative hamburgers.  (Keep reading to hear about their “Name your own burger contest.”) Now anyone who reads my posts knows that I am not a drinker but even their beer menu intrigued me.  Read More →

Anyone who knows me knows I love numbers.  Big , small, rational or irrational, I look at numbers and my brain fires up.  (Okay, I am a little OCD and I just love to count things.) So the first time I saw there was a restaurant called N9NE Steakhouse, I was intrigued. This past Friday, I had the WONDERFUL pleasure of dining at N9NE Steakhouse in Chicago and thought I’d count down my Top Nine Reasons to Dine at N9NE.  (I could come up with more reasons but I’m trying to be cute!) NINE REASONS TO DINE AT N9NE STEAKHOUSE 1.  FOOD:  I wouldn’t be aRead More →

Surprises.  They happen every day and are around every corner.  I think surprises are one of the most exciting parts about food.  You can take one ingredient and prepare it many different ways.  It can taste completely unique even if it is something that has been around for years. So when I was invited to a preview luncheon at the new Season’s 52 opening May 21, 2012 in Oakbrook, IL.  I wasn’t expecting any surprises.  I already knew their seasonally inspired menu would be delicious.  I knew that the dishes presented to me were going to be under 475 calories and yet full of flavor. Read More →

You walk into the grocery store and go down the aisles.  You buy the items you need.  You aren’t given the option to taste everything you buy or in some cases know where it is made.  You do it because, in most cases, that is your only option. But let’s say you could go into a store and taste everything you were going to buy AND receive helpful cooking advice.  Would you do it? If you answered yes, then I have the store for all of your olive oil and balsamic vinegar needs.  The Olive Branch in Granger (Notre Dame Country), Indiana, is a storeRead More →