Champagne

By Julia Maish |

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Champagne

“Come, for I am drinking stars!"
– Dom Pérignon, allegedly after tasting his first champagne

Hanukkah Foods

By Julia Maish |

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Latkes

While there is an understandable reluctance to lump Hanukkah together with Christmas, the two events have one obvious parallel – each presents an annual opportunity to celebrate with family and friends while indulging in a variety of seasonal dishes that have special relevance to the occasion.

Christmas Foods

By Julia Maish |

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Fruit cake

As travel expert Rick Steves can tell you, each country the world over has its own special Christmas traditions, which includes what foods you find on the Christmas dinner table. Here in America, many of the holiday mainstays we enjoy were brought over by our ancestors when they emigrated, and standard fare can vary by U.S. region, and even by state. But whether you dine on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day, some are universal. Here are the origins of a few of them:

Fondue

By Julia Maish |

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Chocolate fondue with fruit

Say the word “fondue,” and most Americans are instantly transported back to an age of leisure suits, pet rocks, and disco. But today, as communal dining has become increasingly popular, it’s only natural that fondue has returned to the restaurant (and party) scene.

Afternoon Tea

By Julia Maish |

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                            Afternoon tea

Afternoon tea

You certainly don’t have to be British to like the idea of afternoon tea. What’s not to like about an afternoon snack of finger sandwiches, scones with jam or lemon curd and Devonshire cream, small cakes and cookies, and a pot of freshly brewed tea?

Thanksgiving

By Julia Maish |

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“Grateful for each hand we hold
Gathered round this table.
From far and near we travel home,
Blessed that we are able.”

— “Thanksgiving Song” (Mary Chapin Carpenter)

 

Anyone who has ever prepared or partaken of a Thanksgiving dinner probably has a funny story about the experience – thigh-slapping tales of leaving the plastic bag of innards inside the turkey while it roasted, the family dog stealing the bird from the kitchen counter, the oven catching on fire, a crucial ingredient forgotten, etc. Perhaps you frantically dialed the Butterball Turkey Talk-Line so the dinner could be salvaged, or maybe you avoided the trauma altogether and gratefully decamped to a restaurant to let someone else do the cooking.

This week's Episode: Arami, Valois, Chicago Curry House

By David Manilow |

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Check, Please! host Catherine De Orio welcomes guest reviewers Steve Wilhusen, Henry Boyd, and Megha Hamal who weigh in on Chicago area eateries Arami, Valois, and Chicago Curry House.

Cat’s Corner: Q&A with Arami Owner Ty Fujimura

By Catherine De Orio |

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Japanese whiskey at Arami

Japanese whiskey at Arami

 

Hello! This week on the show we take you to sample Japanese and Nepalese cuisine and even stop by one of POTUS’s favorite spots (Valois) when he’s in town! Our stops are Arami in West Town, Chicago Curry House in South Loop, and Valois in Hyde Park. I spoke with Ty Fujimura who is the owner of Arami, as well as a certified sake professional. He gives some guidance on how to have a fantastic dining experience at Arami, choose sake for you meal, and gives his advice on sake bombs. 

Smorgasbord

By Julia Maish |

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A traditional Swedish smörgåsbord

“A fair is a veritable schmorgasbord, orgasbord, orgasbord” – Charlotte’s Web (E.B. White)

Season 16, Episode 5: Pub Royale, Ampersand, Thithi's

By David Manilow |

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Check, Please! host Catherine De Orio welcomes guest reviewers Pooja Koongar, Joe JaQuay, and Suzanne Witt who weigh in on Chicago area eateries Pub RoyaleAmpersand, and Thithi's.

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