Category: Recipes

Eat + Drink This : Episode 4, The Local Chicago Blue Cheese Fondue Chips

You know what sounds awesome after a long day of work? Having a beer or cocktail outside, watching people walk by, and snacking on something that just kicks ass.

I’d like to give a suggestion if you’re looking to scratch that same itch.

You’ve got to check out The Local Chicago who recently opened their patio in the Streeterville/Gold Coast area and now has alfresco dining until midnight.

We recently had the chance to hang out with Chef Travis Strickland and get a behind-the-scenes demonstration of him making The Local Chicago’s Blue Cheese Fondue Chips (check out our video).

My reaction after seeing the finished product – “Damn, this looks good.”

My reaction after having a bite – “Damn, this tastes good.” Continue reading

The 5 Most Important Thanksgiving Questions,…Ever

You must try Mindy’s burger – fresh ground beef, organic bacon and aged cheddar with a fried egg

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. For me, there is no pretense. No presents. Less family drama.

Our family has always focused on what’s important – food & family.

Everyone brings something to the gathering – food, wine, whatever. We also have a bizarre tradition of having to bring an “entertainment” – a loosely defined category of anything that will well, “entertain.”

I entitled this blog post The 5 Most Important Thanksgiving Questions,…Ever. The title was originally meant as a joke because the questions are basic and are in no way life defining. The funny thing is, the more I thought about this holiday and what it meant to me, the more appropriate were the questions. Maybe they are the most important Turkey Day questions ever?

I’m a huge fan of the people we interviewed for this posting. Being new to this whole “interview thing”, it was hard to contain my excitement when we were able to hear what Mindy Segal of Mindy’s Hot Chocolate, Pete Crowley of Haymarket Pub & Brewery and Joe Campagna of Chicago Food Snob were doing this Thanksgiving. If I were to eat and drink like anyone on this upcoming holiday, it’s these people.

Mindyat40Mindy Segal is known for her amazing pastries & heads up the restaurant Mindy’s Hot Chocolate in Chicago. James Beard Award? Check – Winner of the 2012 James Beard Award for Outstanding Pastry. Nominated by the James Beard Foundation 2007-2011 for Outstanding Pastry Chef in the country. Segal won the Jean Banchet award for Best Celebrity Pastry chef in Chicago, Chicago Magazine’s Pastry Chef of the Year and for two consecutive years the Time Out Chicago’s Eat Out Awards for Best Pastry Chef. Don’t be misled by all of these accolades – Mindy is not one-dimensional. The burger at Hot Chocolate can easily stand up against, if not beat any burger in this meat-loving city called Chicago. Trust me.

BSB: What are you doing for Thanksgiving this year? Continue reading

5 Tips for the Ultimate Pie Pairing Party

The wifey & I love having people over to our place for dinner & drinks. We enjoy going out to the new restaurants around town or hitting up The Map Room for whatever new beer is on tap; however, having people over to your home is way more intimate and let’s you cook & drink whatever you want. It’s a selfish thing.

We pretty much have stuck to “dinner parties” (is that too antiquated for 2012?) and I will often make a signature cocktail &/or try to pair wines or beers with our food.

Last weekend we wanted to try something different. My wife is a HUGE fan of pie – apple, blueberry, whatever. I am a HUGE fan of craft beer – West Coast IPA’s, Barley wines, whatever.

We wondered if we could pair the two ideas together and throw a party around it? So, that’s what we did. We held our first Pie Pairing Party on September 29th. Each guest (or couple) was required to bring a pie and had to pair it with a beverage. Goofy but simple premise. Continue reading