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What You Need to Know About the Chicago Dining Scene This Week

Lots and lots of openings to peruse.

Amy Morton   Photo: Galdones Photography

Openings

Sisters Molly and Meg Svec present their first brick-and-mortar sweets shop: Spilt Milk Pastry (103 S. Oak Park)—no relation to the neo-old-man bar in Logan Square also named Spilt Milk—opened in Oak Park’s Hemingway District. Expect the same quality pies and pastries that the two have dished in the past at farmers markets throughout the city.

Also open Saturday: Pilsen brewery Moody Tongue’s new tasting room (2136 S. Peoria Ave.) The menu is petite, with only two non-beer options: freshly shucked oysters and German chocolate cake, which just happen to be brewmaster Jared Rouben’s favorite foods to pair with beer. Read the story of his decadent cake here.

The old Hot Doug’s shack on North California Avenue has been reborn as a second location for Cafe Tola (3324 N. California Ave.), Lake View’s favorite empanada dealer. The new location is significantly larger than the original on Southport, and the menu has expanded to match: tacos and tortas join those classic empanadas.

In Evanston, Amy Morton unveiled her latest concept on Tuesday: The Barn (1016 Church St.), tucked away in the alley behind Thai Sookdee, occupies a beautifully renovated stable. Don’t expect any small plates or shareables: Morton and executive chef Nicole Pederson offer exclusively old-school steakhouse standards, many cut tableside.

At Rylon’s Smokehouse (67 E. Cermak Rd.), chef-pitmaster Derek Rylon smokes just about any animal you can think of: classics like beer, pork, and shrimp, sure, but also alligator and lamb. If you’re feeling a little less adventurous, he grills a mean burger, too.

Morsel

Tony Hu will face sentencing in his tax-evasion trial later this month, but in the meantime, the Tribune took some time to outline exactly what Hu was doing wrong and how the Chinatown restaurateur was caught.

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