Here Are Five Hardcore Food Events for Chicago’s Bravest Eaters

Trash fish. Creamy cocktails. Tequila for dinner. And 11 hours of sangría. Ready?

Photo: Anjali pinto

This drink, available Monday at a pop-up fern bar, is called a ’sloe comfortable screw.’ Order one. No promises you’ll get what you’re really after.

Monday, 5/20: Be brave at Trash Fish Dinner Chicago, a multicourse dinner at Big Jones (5347 N. Clark St., 773-275-5725) featuring fish most chefs would pass on, such as smelt, triggerfish, and Asian carp. That said, ten of Chicago’s bravest chefs—including Paul Kahan, Bruce Sherman, Paul Virant, and Sarah Stegner—will help create the family-style meal, which begins at 6 p.m. Tickets are $125.

Monday, 5/20: Turn back time to when popular cocktails were sweet and creamy at a 1970s-style “fern bar” night with Paul McGee, whose tiki bar Three Dots and a Dash is scheduled to open this summer. The pop-up event at R.J. Grunts (2056 N. Lincoln Park West, 773-929-5363) will showcase common drinks of the era, including White Russians, Tequila Sunrises, and Harvey Wallbangers. Cocktails are $8 and shots $5 when the bar opens at 9 p.m.

Wednesday, 5/22: Prove your passion at the “So You Think You’re a Foodie” chef’s table at Frontier (1072 N. Milwaukee Ave., 773-772-4322). Chef Brian Jupiter will unveil a five-course tasting menu featuring Ibérico pig the night of the event. Tickets are $65, and wine or beer pairings an additional $20.

Thursday, 5/23: Worm your way to the Milagro Tequila Dinner at Cantina Laredo (508 N. State St., 312-955-0014) for a four-course meal paired with cocktails made with the sponsor liquor. The off-menu modern Mexican dishes from chef Kennon Reed include crab-corn quesadillas and grilled halibut on a banana leaf. Tickets are $49.95.

Sunday, 5/26: Celebrate Memorial Day Eve with the view from the rooftop lounge at Epic (112 W. Hubbard St., 312-222-4940). The 1 p.m.–to–midnight cocktail party features drink specials such as $25 sangría pitchers and $3 bottles of Peroni. Ribs and fried chicken are on the day’s menu in addition to the usual fare.

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