Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Odds and Ends

I know, I know. I've been slacking. Between a busy work schedule and lots of friends in town, I haven't had much time to cook or write. This is going to be kind of a mish-mosh of a post, but better than nothing - right? I'll go in chronological order here.

In preparation for the opening of Sprinkles Cupcakes in Chicago, last week there was a Sprinkles truck in Chicago serving up a preview of what's to come. I didn't actually see it, but Peter did and got us a couple cupcakes. Aww.

That's red velvet on the left and chocolate coconut on the right. They were so, so good. The cake part was really fresh and soft, and the icing was perfect. If I'm eating a Magnolia or Billy's cupcake with their traditional vanilla buttercream icing, I often scrape part of it off because it's just too rich and sugary to eat the whole heap they put on each cupcake. But the Sprinkles icing was really fluffy and not too sweet. They had an opening party last Saturday afternoon that was by invitation/RSVP. I found out about it on Facebook so it's not like it was that exclusive, but I didn't think it would be as crazy as it was. We walked over there about halfway through and it was such a madhouse we just turned around. They are officially open for business now so I'll try to go back soon.

Friday night we ventured out to a new place called Rootstock. It's near Humboldt Park. I can't take credit for finding it, we met up with Jacquilyn and a bunch of other people who decided to go there. We had a great table outside, enjoyed some drinks and appetizers, placed an order for dinner, and then the storm of the century arrived (almost 8 inches of rain!!!) and we made a dash for inside.

Sorry, no pictures of food. It was very dark at both our table outdoors and inside, plus I didn't want to freak out my new acquaintances with my food photography. But the food was great - charcuterie, small flatbread pizzas, a great burger, PEI mussels, delicious fries, and lots of other goodies. It was a fun to try a new place that I never would have found on my own.

After the restaurant we made a mad dash through the monsoon to the California Clipper, a bar just across the intersection. It turned into one of those great nights you just can't plan for, and couldn't recreate if you tried. We all got to the bar soaking wet, and because of the rain it was pretty empty which was nice. They had a great country band playing, and then to top it off this man in a rain slicker carrying a small cooler walked in. What was in the cooler, you ask?

Oh, just some amazing tamales. $5 for a baggie of 5 cheese and poblano pepper tamales, with some green salsa.

Last Sunday we went to the Publican for brunch. I had only been for dinner and was excited for a different experience there. And it didn't disappoint. I ordered red wine poached eggs over sourdough toast, with bearnaise sauce and prosciutto.

Oh man. I ate everything on my plate.

And Sunday night we went to Table Fifty-Two. I didn't get any photos of food, it's a real classy joint plus we had a big group. I did take a photo of the outside of the restaurant because it's a cute little house. I guess I have a thing for restaurants in houses.

I feel like only showing the outside of the restaurant is like saying "I have a secret but I'm not going to tell you". I'll just say that a couple of my favorite things I ate there were fried green tomatoes, fried pickles, and a vegetable and manchengo wood fired pizza. I guess I'll have to take one for the team and go back so I can get more photos.

Wow, busy weekend. All this eating has left me wiped out.


  1. I learned a great trick for eating cupcakes. Break off the bottom cake part and put it on top of the icing, making a little sandwich. Its much easier to eat and distributes the icing evenly.

  2. What are you, a wizard? A genius? Great idea!