I am removing the supurfulous buns!

I’ve been meaning to update this for a while.  I was a bit spoiled around my birthday in the food department.  it was ridiculous, really.  I’ll have to break it up into a couple of posts as not to overdose you.

so for part of my birthday, which extended into several weeks it seems, I went up to chicago with my parents to visit my sister and her bf, john.  me+karen+chicago always=insanely delicious food.  we’re always trying new places and it’s always amazing.

the first night there we went to a place called storefront company.  it was opening night too, so that only added to the excitement.

great atmosphere, really cool vibe.

my drink…

gin+ginger / no 3 gin. king’s ginger. imbue wash

it was a little too strong for me, so I switched with karen and had her moscow mule.  I’m in love with moscow mules.  I would’ve ordered it had I let my eyes wander down the menu, delicious.

our first sampling…

quinoa fries / sheeps’ milk cheese. maderia granita

I love quinoa, its such a lovely grain:)  and the texture of these was quite perfect, they were rich.  the sweet sorbet had kind of a kick, but the three of us didn’t really understand it’s place in the dish.  but when the fries soaked up the melted sorbet, it was quite nice.  maybe that was the point?

then we got cheese.  karen and I are big cheese lovers.  like next to peanut butter, cheese is my favorite.  so we went with a french cheese, cause we’re classy like that.

cypress grove chevre / walnut cake. honey braised beets. balsamic

deliciously simple, the way cheese should be.

we got some complimentary bread.  it was salty cheesy and ridiculously crispy.

next up, the first course.

scallops / branade. rye bread salad. lobster veloute.

not the most perfect texture, but really nice.  great flavor.

we got to first course samplings…

quail / pistachio sausage stuffed leg. pan roasted breast. polenta. blood orange cress.

this is one of those dishes that makes every ingredient an absolute necessity.  the blood orange was a ridiculous addition to the polenta and quail…and by ridiculous, I mean, the cherry on top.  I already had an ongoing fling with polenta, and I’m afraid it’s turned into an unhealthy obsession.  and the best part about quail is it’s size…it soaks up all the juicy crispiness that chicken would, but with no effort at all.  great great dish.

let’s keep it rollin’…we ate a lot of food that night…

pork cheek hash / six hour egg. rose hip catsup. cracklings.

omg.  this was spectacular.  it was like fancy meatloaf.  except its too classy to be even called meatloaf.  the pork cheek was so savory.  and I don’t know, but that catsup had to have magic in it.  in.sane.

duck / dr. joe jurgielewicz farm / seared breast. confit leg. parisian gnocchi.
blackberries. escarole.

favorite. picture. EVER.

let me give you a second to get over how awesome that picture is.  it is the best one I’ve taken so far.   I’m pretty sure it should be in my kitchen.  that fork shadow, like sweet moses.

ok, onto the DISH…this was awesome.  and the best part of our meal.  the hog loin, second from the left, was the best thing we ate…it was the perfect amount of salt and was cooked flawlessly.  yum.

beef loin.cdk farm / charred onion pureé. duck fat veggies. marrow emulsion.

a meat and potatoes hunk of perfection.  look at that meat!

monkfish / short rib fried rice. tamago. scallion. coriander pomegranate glaze.

ok.  so I’ve only had monkfish once.  with katie in ireland.  and it was good, and it created quite the memory for the two of us.  in other words, monkfish isn’t exactly the first thing I wanna order.  but we did.  and it was delicious.  they call it “poor man’s lobster”…my foot!  it was wonderfully chunky and bountiful, and any time pomegranate is involved, I’m game.  a great combo of flavors.  and just LOOK at that presentation…those are some more of my favorite pictures.  amazing.

stay tuned for more birthday fun.


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