I stopped by Vesta Chicago’s Fuego grill launch party last week and it was sizzling. What makes the Fuego grill so cool is that it doesn’t really look like one. Architects, designers, and friends of Vesta (a dealer of modern kitchen cabinetry and wardrobes) gathered around what looked like several industrial-style kitchen islands to collect their delicious burgers and fish tacos. The Fuego has no visible lid (it’s fully retractable), so there’s no physical barrier between the grill master and his/her friends. Teak and slate countertops surrounding the cooking surface allow you to set down your plates and drinks as if it were a bar. The grill also has tons of hidden storage (including a place to hide the gas tank), and for purists, a drawer containing an optional charcoal-grilling system.

Next, it was on to a soirée at the remodeled home and studio of the husband-wife architect team, Lisa and Ron Elkins, owners of the eco-friendly firm 2 Point Perspective. We checked out their cool new kitchen with its bamboo cabinets, recycled glass countertops, and energy-saving LED lighting (we will post photos as soon as we have them), and we marveled at the huge, gorgeous planks of rough reclaimed wood, freshly purchased from Horigan Urban Forest Products , that they had leaning against their living room wall next to a sign proclaiming: “Future dining table.” The nice people of Greenmaker, an eco-friendly remodeling supply store, were on hand raffling off gift certificates.

Claudia Skylar of Mastro & Skylar Architects, Colette Rodon-Hornof of Vesta Chicago, and Ann Clark of Nicholas Clark Architects

A Fuego grill in all its glory