The Food and Wine Hedonist

leave your inhibitions at the door

Chicago Gets Hedonized Part 2 – The O.G.

You’d think after a night that included a Bang Bang (2 consecutive dinners) and a huge Filipino breakfast, I’d be done for the day.    Shit, I was just getting started.

My mom is still in Chicago, living independently in a lakefront high-rise at the young age of 90.  So some time with her wasn’t even a question.   I brought some of our leftover breakfast for her to try.   It turns out that she’s been to Uncle Mike’s a few times already.   See?  The Original Gangsta.

We hopped on the bus and did some shopping and I was astounded by her energy.   It was still a couple hours away from when were going to church, so we headed over to Eataly.  We separated briefly so I can check out the wine and booze section.   She went to the deli area and bought a basket full of Italian cheeses and a hunk of prosciutto.   Damn.

We sat down for a spell and split:

Insalata di Barbabietole (roasted beet salad)

Fritto Misto de Pesce (fried mixed seafood)

Calabrian Pepper Sauce – gotta figure out how to make this….

The O.G. taking pictures like a boss.

See where I get it from?

 

Roister

I parted ways with the O.G. and then met up with El Douchebag, Not Pam, Chemical Al, and Sh!tshow for some pre-dinner cocktails.   We only had a table for four and were unsuccessful in getting Sh!tshow added.  Probably should’ve had my mom call – I have a feeling she would’ve got the job done.

Roister opened last year in the hugely popular Fulton Market area.   Up until a couple years ago, that area was where all the food wholesalers were.  It was kinda like the Chicago version of New York’s Meatpacking district, minus the sleazy decades.    The restaurant itself is part of the Alinea Group, which also includes Alinea – considered one of the top restaurants in the world – and Next, the ticket-based restaurant which changes format 2-3 times a year based on time and place concepts.   While Alinea has 3 Michelin stars, Roister got a star in its first year, so it’s no slouch.

Roister was designed to be an interactive experience with an open kitchen and sleek dining room integrated with each other.   But unlike the Alinea or Next, it’s more of a straightforward menu featuring some rustic elements.

Here’s what we had –

Shinjuku Spritz – Fords gin, Aperol, cucumber, mint

Hushpuppies with chicken liver pâté, peach jam, pickles

Spicy Cucumber Salad – pineapple- fish sauce dressing, lots of herbs

Smoked Oysters – chipotle butter, epazote vinegar, French curry

Anson Mills Grits – gulf shrimp, crab curry, Thai basil

Hearth Grilled 32 oz Ribeye – caramelized onion steak sauce, melted onions

Rohan Duck – carolina gold rice, citrus, egg yolk

 

I really wish I was a better writer or at least not as lazy enough to look in a thesaurus for better words than – FUCKING AMAZING.   The hushpuppies, grits, and salad were excellent, but seemed a little boring when compared to the other items we ordered.   The ribeye and duck were beyond belief and worth every penny ($99 for the ribeye and $76 for the duck).    By far the Smoked Oysters were the “Silent Assassin” – generally unassuming, but absolutely stunning with layers and layers of flavors in a single bite.

We were going to go for two of the menu items, but decided to get all three desserts.  Because… wtf, why not?

Coconut Custard – carrot cake, lime, ginger

Cookies & Milk – chocolate chip cookie dough, milk ice cream

Foie Gras Candy Bar – black walnuts, pretzel, caramel

 

Loved the custard and cookies, but that foie gras candy bar may be one of the best things that I’ve ever had in my mouth.   You’re free to let your mind roam as to what I’ve had there.   I won’t confirm nor deny….

I’m just pissed I let my tablemates dissuade me from ordering a couple more of those candy bars to go.

Next Up in Part 3 –  Exploring our Filipino roots, a Netflix-inspired bar, and the shortest menu I’ve ever seen.

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About thefoodandwinehedonist

I don't know everything about the world of food and wine, but I'm not going to let a small detail like that stop me from blogging about it.

One comment on “Chicago Gets Hedonized Part 2 – The O.G.

  1. Tamara
    November 1, 2017

    Loving this series! Your mom is my idol. I need those beets in my life. And everything on your dinner menu. 🙂

    I went to Eataly with some fam when I was in town in Nov 2015 for a baby shower. It was the weekend before Thanksgiving, snow was on the way, so I took an impromptu Friday off to drive over a day early. Chicago in the snow, with Christmas lights everywhere? Yep, that was awesome. And Eataly was overwhelming and so cool. I need to go back…

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This entry was posted on November 1, 2017 by in Dining, The Chi, Travel and tagged , , , , , , .
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