Closing One Chapter, Starting Another

“What do you think you’ll miss the most?”   It’s a question I’ve given a lot of thought to since my dad asked me in April as we were driving through Illinois to go apartment hunting. At this point, I’d written 76 articles for my blog. I’d posted 304 photos and attended countless openings, events and…

Dos Amigos: Food, Friendship and Family

It’s almost a guarantee that any celebration you attend will involve food. But sometimes, food is the reason for the celebration. That was the case this past weekend, when my parents and I ate a delicious dinner at Dos Amigos Mexican Restaurant in Libertyville, Illinois. Dos Amigos opened in February 2017, the brainchild of co-owners Sergio Casillas…

On the Bayou: A Taste of New Orleans

Merriam-Webster’s dictionary describes gumbo as “a soup thickened with okra pods or filé and containing meat or seafoods and usually vegetables.” The dictionary’s definition wouldn’t necessarily be wrong. But ask Chef Gregory Johnson, and he’d tell you there’s a lot more to the soup than meets the eye. “Gumbo means: take her, take you, take me,…

A Taste of Peru in Rogers Park

It’s 11:30pm as we trudge back to my mom’s car, our stomachs full. We sit in silence for a moment or two, soaking in all the food and stories we heard over the last four hours. Four hours. My mom finally speaks. “It’s like he’s lived five lives,” she says in amazement. I nod, thinking…

Recipes of Courage: Part One

This past Chanukah was filled with candle lightings, latkes, matzo ball soup and gelt. My parents went to Highland Park’s main grocery store, Sunset Foods, to bring home pre-made latkes, and kept a constant supply of matzo ball soup in our fridge thanks to our favorite deli, Once Upon a Bagel – I was sick,…

More than Just Salad

It’s a resolution most of us make around this time of the year. “Next year, I’m going to make healthier choices.” Well, this year, I got a little early motivation for accomplishing my New Year’s Resolution, thanks to a visit to Just Salad in Chicago. Just Salad is a healthy, organic company with locations across…

Second FreshFin Poké Location Opens in Historic Third Ward

This summer, I visited FreshFin Poké for the first time at its original North Avenue location. I ordered the Mango Tango and totally fell in love with the place. So, when I heard it was opening a second location in the Third Ward at the Landmark Building, I was over the moon. And yes, as the…

Hotel Madrid Prepares for “Stranger Things” Halloween Ball

It’s the Netflix hit that I was too wimpy to get through alone. “You like Steven Spielberg?” My friends would ask. “Well, then, you’ve got to watch ‘Stranger Things.’” Well, I wimped out pretty quickly, and keep telling myself I’ll get through the whole show one of these days. But in the meantime, I’ll settle for learning…

Finding Inspiration in “Commanding the Table”

Before there was “Chopped” on Food Network or the #feedfeed on Instagram, there was a young woman named Ella Brennan, looking to make her mark on the New Orleans restaurant scene in the 1940s and 1950s. “Ella Brennan: Commanding the Table,” a documentary featured in the Milwaukee Film Festival, follows her journey from working as a…

Colectivo to Donate to Hurricane Relief Efforts

On Wednesday, September 20, Colectivo will donate 50 percent of its coffee sales to aid victims of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. According to Colectivo’s Facebook page, coffee sales on “Relief Wednesday” made in person and online will both benefit relief efforts. Colectivo will donate proceeds to GlobalGiving‘s Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma Relief Funds. GlobalGiving, a…