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At Laughing Bird, Filipino Fare Lands in Lincoln Square

The former Tank Sushi space makes way for what owner Franco Gianni thinks will be the next food wave in Chicago.

Chicken adobo   Photo: Anna Knott

In case you were wondering about Tank Sushi, its owner, Franco Gianni, gutted the place to make way for Laughing Bird and what he believes will be the next food wave: Filipino.

To that end, he hired Chrissy Camba (Bar Pastoral), and she set to work modernizing her Filipino family’s recipes. “My lola [ grandmother] did most of the cooking,” Camba says, “and she is an excellent cook.” That won’t stop Camba from riffing on dishes such as laing (dried taro leaves simmered in coconut cream with onion, garlic, and chilies), using fava bean leaves in the spring and pumpkin leaves in the fall.

And then there’s chicken adobo, the national dish of the Philippines. “It varies from region to region and even family to family,” says Camba. “It’s all about the ratio of vinegar to garlic and soy sauce. Mine will be moister than my lola’s.” But Camba’s favorite traditional dessert—halo-halo, a concoction of shaved ice, jackfruit, coconut strings, palm jellies, and sweetened mung beans—won’t change a whit.

Lola usually gets what Lola wants. (Gianni does too.) 4514 N. Lincoln Ave., 773-506-2473

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