Photo by joseph de vito.
Jason Im, the new chef at Jellyfish (1009 N. Rush St., 312-660-3111), stretches the tentacles of his experience around the world. After staging at a Cuban lounge in London and resorts in Thailand, he worked at Charlie Trotter’s Las Vegas outpost Bar Charlie and the casual Italian bistro A Mano, underneath Bin 36. Then he cooked at both the Francis W. Parker School and the Latin School of Chicago, making food we don’t seem to remember seeing in the cafeteria.
“For lunch, for instance, Elysian Fields rack of lamb, butter-glazed Thumbelina carrots, and curry-cauliflower purée,” Im says. “We would also do shepherd’s pie with all organic potatoes from Nichols Farm.”
Now the top banana at the pan-Asian Rush Street spot, Im introduced his new menu this week. His wagyu burger combines wagyu beef, foie gras, oyster butter, fried oysters, kimchee-mushroom ragù, huckleberry gastrique, and pickled red onion on a brioche bun. His Buffalo-style frog’s legs are soaked in buttermilk for 24 hours, battered with flour, egg, and semolina, and then fried and tossed with the buttery hot sauce familiar from Buffalo wings.
And there are kimchee cheese curds: Fried Brunkow cheese and Nueske’s bacon with sautéed kimchee. Apparently Im has also been to Seoulwaukee.