Photograph: Hilary Higgins, RedEye
Opening this week:
Monday, 3/18: The Oregon native Clay Hamilton brings his hometown pizza to a log-cabin atmosphere at Homeslice (938 W. Webster St., 312-789-4600).
Wednesday, 3/20: Big-name chef Kendal Duque (Sepia, City Tavern) promises to push the 17,000-square-foot, retractable-roofed American Junkie (15 W. Illinois St., 312-239-0995) beyond typical bar fare.
Wednesday, 3/20: Breakfast lovers and Jerry Garcia listeners, head to the new BYOB fast-casual Hash (1357 N. Western Ave., 773-661-2964)—or order for delivery.
Wednesday, 3/20: Ingredients from you-know-what time zone comprise the menu at Central Standard (169 W. Kinzie Ave., 312-527-9409).
The finalists for Check, Please! hosting duties include the locavore chef Cleetus Friedman (City Provisions), the truffle importer Frank Brunacci (Sixteen), and the pastry chef/consultant Sarah Levy. The field of 17 is up for viewer voting through April 17.
Nobu, a glam restaurant brand co-owned by Robert De Niro and named for chef Nobu Matsuhisa, might come to 846-854 West Randolph Street.
Chicago’s restaurants are well-represented in the list of James Beard Award semifinalists. Balena, Grace, Naha, and Spiaggia made the cut, among others.