Arts & Entertainment

Arts & Entertainment

Chicago Arts & Entertainment News: Upcoming art events in the city of Chicago.

Sula Thinks Ella Elli is a Welcome Surprise; Vettel Calls Fulton Market Kitchen an...

Plus reviews of venerable Manny’s Chef Matt Eversman has “found a place to exercise his creative muscles” with Ella Elli. Though the menu is focused on the “trends of the day,” Mike Sula has mostly good things to say about the newest spot from Four Star Restaurant Group. The avocado toast is “no joke,” featuring charred rustic bread, a blanket of “green goo,” and a shower of everything-bagel spice blend. A roasted carrot salad tossed with pickled celery and avocado, and dressed with za’atar and harissa, is a “kaleidoscopically colored dish, alive with loud, jousting flavors.” Bucatini with sungold tomato and Parmigiano is a “marvel of simplicity,” while fettuccine with rock shrimp, mint, and peas is “so springlike you might start sneezing.” Entrees are less stellar as swordfish and lamb chops are overcooked, but the burger is memorable thanks to a disk of soft ripened cheese and “powerfully rich” cognac-and-cream-powered poivre sauce on the side. [Reader] Phil Vettel thinks Fulton Ma..

Walk Through BLVD, Bringing Hollywood Elegance to Fulton Market

The swanky new bi-level restaurant lounge has a curvy, sexy space BLVD—the new “Hollywood glam” restaurant that opened earlier this week in Fulton Market—needed a few days to prepare for its close up. Photos now reveal its curvy and sleek space spread through multiple dining rooms, bars, and lounge seating spread over two levels that’s parts The Great Gatsby and Mad Men. While Chicago doesn’t boast the same celebrity A-list as LA, BLVD’s quarters should prove popular with the city’s VIPs. The over-sized chairs and booths fit inside a catacomb like space ideal for both large groups and intimate dates. While the Midwest, especially Wisconsin, defines supper clubs in its own special way, BLVD bring the Sunset Strip to Chicago with huge sparkling chandeliers and a sloping and twisting staircase. The space feels like a member of the Rat Pack could pop-in for an impromptu performance at any time. The design of the large 10,000 square-foot restaurant — which has come a long way since the..

Bonchon, the Popular Korean Chicken Chain, Plans Wicker Park Spot Amidst Huge Chicago Expansion

The Chinatown location could open next week Not only will Bonchon open in Chinatown as soon as next week, but the popular Korean chicken wing chain plans to open as many as 20 locations in the Chicago area. After it opens at Chinatown Square Mall—inside the former Lao Shanghai at 2163 S. China Place — the chain will set its sights on Wicker Park, the Tribune reported. Bonchon’s website also lists an upcoming suburban Glenview location at 1615 N. Milwaukee Ave. Bonchon enjoys a rabid fandom mainly for its wings, drumsticks, and strips that are all available in spicy and soy-garlic varieties. It also serves also fried chicken and bulgogi sliders, Korean tacos, and bi bim bop. Check out the menu for the first Chicago location here. The exact location of the upcoming Wicker Park restaurant is currently unknown, as the Tribune report only says it’s near the Starbucks on Division Street. Bonchon officials, when reached on Friday, wouldn’t confirm an address. Speculate away, but when it c..

Scofflaw Group’s Seafood Restaurant Sink|Swim to Close Next Month to Reconcept

The group previously reconcepted its first restaurant just seven months ago in Logan Square For the second time in seven months, Sink|Swim will close and reconcept. Scofflaw Group, the owners of the seafood restaurant and the acclaimed Logan Square cocktail bar of the same name, will shutter Sink|Swim on Sunday, July 2, according to a rep. The rep didn’t share when the restaurant would reopen or what to expect in terms of changes. Scofflaw Group should make announcement “in the coming months,” according to a statement. Sink|Swim opened in March 2015 as the group’s first and only dedicated restaurant. Its opening menu featured cheffy entrees costing between $15 and $20, which was pricier than many other restaurants in the neighborhood. Management then made changes to its first dedicated restaurant in November 2016, going more casual with a seafood shack-like menu while dropping prices. The restaurant’s opening chef, Matt Danko, departed a few weeks after the changes. The shutter ..

Jeni’s Ice Cream Fans Can Start Lining Up at New Old Town Store Next...

The new Wells Street location will be the popular chain’s fifth in Chicago Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams is taking over the former Doodle’s Doughnuts space in Old Town for the uber-popular chain’s fifth Chicago location. Expect long lines of customers to start before the July 4 holiday, as that’s the target timeframe to open at 1419 N. Wells St., according to a Jeni’s rep. The signage and Facebook page have been up for a few weeks and crews were on hand on Friday morning to clear out the remains of Doodle’s, the former doughnut shop that abruptly closed in September. Jeni’s seems intent on conquering nearly all of Chicago’s North Side neighborhoods. The Ohio-based company, led by Beard-award cookbook author Jeni Britton Bauer, opened its first Chicago shop in September 2013 on Southport in Lakeview. The chain followed up with openings in Wicker Park and Lincoln Park. Bauer should return to Chicago later this month as Jeni’s is poised to open its fourth location in the West Loop at 911-9..

Underground Wonder Bar Owner Says its Really Closing, Deep-Dish Coming to United Flights, More...

Plus, a new app for free food comes to town —The owner of quirky longtime late-night bar and music venue Underground Wonder Bar says its finally closing — and swears that this time it’s for real. A Facebook post announces that Sept. 3 will be its last day in business at 710 N. Clark St. But there’s reason to be skeptical that this is truly the end, as ownership had previously announced its demise multiple times — including this past January — and is still around. Stay tuned. —Would you eat Chicago-style deep-dish pizza as airline food? United passengers will get that chance beginning in July as the Chicago-based airline will serve Uno’s pizzas on flights that begin in the United States and last more than 3 1⁄2 hours, the Tribune reports. The pies, which will only be available in one variety (spinach and cheese), cost $9.99 and are part of the airline’s revamped food menu that will be available starting July 1. —Brickhouse, the new restaurant and bar just outside Wrigley Field that w..

Underground Wonder Bar Owner Says it’s Really Closing, Deep-Dish Coming to United Flights, More...

Plus, a new app for free food comes to town —The owner of quirky longtime late-night bar and music venue Underground Wonder Bar says its finally closing — and swears that this time it’s for real. A Facebook post announces that Sept. 3 will be its last day in business at 710 N. Clark St. But there’s reason to be skeptical that this is truly the end, as ownership had previously announced its demise multiple times — including this past January — and is still around. Stay tuned. —Would you eat Chicago-style deep-dish pizza as airline food? United passengers will get that chance beginning in July as the Chicago-based airline will serve Uno’s pizzas on flights that begin in the United States and last more than 3 1⁄2 hours, the Tribune reports. The pies, which will only be available in one variety (spinach and cheese), cost $9.99 and are part of the airline’s revamped food menu that will be available starting July 1. —Brickhouse, the new restaurant and bar just outside Wrigley Field that w..

The Atlantic Daily: Here Comes the Health Plan

What We’re FollowingThe Big Reveal: Senate Republicans released a discussion draft of their bill to reform—but not outright repeal—the Affordable Care Act. This bill builds on the American Health Care Act passed by the House last month, but with some changes, including slightly more generous tax credits and deeper cuts to Medicaid. As lawmakers prepare to debate and vote on the bill next week, former President Barack Obama posted a statement on Facebook, condemning the plan and defending his own signature policy as he never did while in office. Today’s Trump Tweets: A month after his tweet that “James Comey better hope there are no ‘tapes’” raised speculation that he’d recorded their conversations, President Trump stated via Twitter that he “did not make, and do not have, any such recordings.” (He did suggest that he could have been surveilled without his knowledge.) This admission seems to confirm that Trump was bluffing to mislead the public—and the bluffing could have long-term cons..

Blue Door Farm Stand is Really Reopening on Friday in Lincoln Park

It morphed into a two-floor all-day bar/cafe Two years after closing for remodeling and a series of false starts, Blue Door Farm Stand will finally reopen on Friday in Lincoln Park. It’s now a two-story restaurant near Halsted and Armitage with gourmet sandwiches, soups, and even pho. The space at 2010 N. Halsted St. also includes two bars with draft craft beer and five signature cocktails. It’s giving the area an all-day bar and cafe. Cold-pressed juices and Intelligentsia coffee will be on hand for morning commuters. “We didn’t even know that we’d be doing that when we came in,” said Gabe Garza of Blue Door’s parent company, Ideology Entertainment. Blue Door has a cult following, mostly due to the popularity of its Brussel sprout and kale salad. The 4,000-square-foot space will cater to a variety of types as it’s part coffee shop, part bar, and part restaurant. That’s why the first floor will feature both counter and table service for guests. The second floor will focus on table s..

Alpana Singh Finds a Replacement for Beard-Nominated Tanya Baker at Boarding House

AMK’s Phil Rubino started this week Alpana Singh has found a replacement for chef Tanya Baker, the James Beard Award finalist who left Singh’s Boarding House earlier this year. Phil Rubino—a 2013 Banchet Rising Star Chef award nominee who was most recently the collaborator for AMK Restaurant Group (AMK Kitchen & Bar, Nosh & Booze)—has filled the position. Rubino’s resume includes stints in several notable Chicago kitchens including Spiaggia, Bin 36, Cicchetti, and Dusek’s. Rubino met Singh, the former Check, Please! host, years ago and developed a friendship. He started the new job three days ago and said he’ll begin adding new items next week. Rubino expects it will take two to three weeks to overhaul the current menu. Provided Phil Rubino Boarding House was an attractive job for him because he says that Singh doesn’t restrict chefs very much. Pairing food with wine is important, as Boarding House focuses on the latter, but Rubino said he has freedom. Forthcoming menu items include..

Where to Eat Brunch in Chicago Right Now, June 2017

Behold the 20 hottest brunch restaurants in Chicago Brunch, not quite breakfast or lunch, is often overlooked but we're here to give it all the attention it deserves. The Eater Chicago Brunch Heatmap is a continually updated list showing the newest places that are doing great things with their brunch menus. Because after a long week, everyone should kick back and relax over an omelet and Bloody Mary. So don't ruin the weekend by making the wrong choice. Nobody likes soggy bacon. This month's additions include West Loop wine bar The Lunatic, The Lover & The Poet, the elegant Maple & Ash, and LondonHouse for rooftop action. They join a growing number of restaurants dedicated to making their midday options as equally important as dinner service. Sure, you can order a McMuffin at all hours of the day but why settle? Start Sunday Funday off right and get your eggs (and much more) on at these red-hot restaurants.

The Ace Hotel’s Restaurant Is Named City Mouse and Will Debut July 1

Caitlin Laman, formerly of Mezcaleria Las Flores, will be the beverage director for the follow-up to Giant The follow-up to Giant, Jason Vincent’s highly-acclaimed Logan Square restaurant, now has a name inside the forthcoming Ace Hotel in Fulton Market. It’s called City Mouse and Vincent and chef Pat Sheerin’s new restaurant will debut with brunch service when the hotel opens on July 1. Sheerin is hopeful they’ll unveil full service—including dinner and cocktails—on July 12, according to the Tribune. The Ace also continues to lure big-name talent — management has hired Caitlin Laman as the hotel’s beverage director. Laman is a former Food & Wine best new mixologist who last worked at Mezcaleria Las Flores in Logan Square. She will now work with Giant’s beverage guru Josh Perlman to create the drinks for all aspects of the under-construction 159-room hotel at 311 N. Morgan St. It’s been three years since the Ace Chicago was announced following the boutique hotel chain’s locations in..