Gapers Block has ceased publication.

Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
 Thank you for your readership and contributions. 


Monday, April 15

Gapers Block

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Restaurant Tue Jan 22 2013

Chicago Restaurant Week 2013; or, A Reason to Leave the House This February

Delivery food never tastes as good as when temperatures outside drop to surreal-sounding levels (0 degrees? What does it even mean?), but this upcoming February, get ready to dust off your long underwear--Restaurant Week 2013 will give you a reason to venture beyond the warm confines of your living room.

Continue reading this entry »

Danielle Snow

Deals Mon Jan 07 2013

Dunlay's Loves the Eights Tomorrow

Dunlay's in the Square (3137 W. Logan) celebrates its eighth birthday tomorrow by offering each of its menu items for $8; I highly recommend the cookie skillet for dessert. If the wait is too atrocious, head north up to Milwaukee to Friendship Chinese (2830 N. Milwaukee) for their weekly deal ($9.95 for any dine-in menu item) or south to Revolution Brewery (2323 N. Milwaukee) for their weekly four course prix-fixe ($30-45).

Robyn Nisi

Deals Thu Dec 20 2012

The Coffee Studio Celebrates 5

the coffee studio 5 years andersonvilleHas it really been that long? The Coffee Studio in Andersonville is turning five years old, and as is often the case, you get the presents.

Stop in between 6:30am and 9pm on Friday, Dec. 21, and you'll get a free birthday cupcake as well as 5% off your purchase, including the craft beer and wine the shop added to its menu this past weekend.

The Coffee Studio is located at 5628 N. Clark St.

Andrew Huff

Chicago Gourmet Mon Sep 03 2012

Eat Now, Go to Chicago Gourmet Later

chicago gourmet 2012Bon Appétit and the Chicago Gourmet food festival has a deal for you: spend at least $35 at five of the 80 restaurants participating in this year's Dine Around program between Sept. 1 and Sept. 30, save the receipts and you'll get a free one-day ticket to Chicago Gourmet, which runs Sept. 28-30 in Millennium Park.

For the math-impaired, $175 gets you $178.63 worth of ticket ( $159 plus tax and fees). So you're paying your way in food -- but that's hardly a hardship, right? Plus, each restaurant will offer a special $35 prix fixe menu to make the whole deal a little easier. (You're welcome to order off the menu and still get the deal, though.)

Continue reading this entry »

Andrew Huff

Restaurant Tue May 22 2012

Quick Bite Enters the Hot Dog Hall of Fame

Quick Bite Carry Out (2011-08-13 14-55-13)
Photo by Gary Sibio

Quick Bite Carry Outs, the little hot dog stand at the corner of Western and Foster, is being inducted into the Vienna Beef Hot Dog Hall of Fame today, and to celebrate it's selling Chicago-style hot dogs for just 99 cents.

Even on a normal day, Quick Bite is one of the best deals in town. The standing special a hot dog and fries for just $1.95 (raised earlier this year from $1.75); two dogs, fries and a drink will set you back just a fiver. The shop is open from 11am till 9pm Monday through Friday, 11am to 5pm Saturday. Quick Bite is at 5155 N. Western Ave.

Andrew Huff

Dessert Mon May 07 2012

Free Dessert and Giving Back

lemonblueberry.jpgWant free dessert? And want to give something back to the community? This Tuesday and Wednesday only, get a free vegan dessert from Native Foods Cafe. (Dessert offer only redeemable with the purchase of an entree, side and drink.) If the housemade lemon blueberry bar pictured at right isn't already swaying your lunch or dinner plans, Tuesday and Wednesday are also Native Community Days. A portion of profits on Tuesday, May 8 will benefit the Puppy Mill Project and Wednesday, May 9 profits will benefit Namaste Charter School. Click here to find a Native Foods location near you, or email to suggest a non-profit organization near and dear to your heart for upcoming Native Community Days.

Katie Johnson

Deals Sun Jan 29 2012

Wings Wings Wings

ChicagoDiner-Wingzfor6-Md.jpgGet 'em while they're hot. And certifiably vegan. The Chicago Diner is offering vegan party "wingz" for six (pictured), just in time for Super Bowl Sunday. Regularly offered for $35, you can enjoy them at 20% off if you ask for the Super Bowl special. At $28 a tray, I'd say that's quite a steal for vegan meat delectables. Party wingz alone not going to cut it for you and your veggie friends? Check out the Chicago Diner's catering menu for additional offerings. The Chicago Diner is located at 3411 N Halsted St. All orders for the Super Bowl special must be placed prior to Feb. 2 (48 hours notice required). Contact or call 773-935-6696 for more info.

Katie Johnson

Deals Wed Jan 25 2012

Barbecuing the Super Bowl

Super Bowl Weekend is barbecue weekend, it seems. While Gapers Block is hosting its BBQ Bowl rib competition on Saturday, Barn & Company, 950 W. Wrightwood Ave., is offering two specials for Sunday.

banrandco.jpgIn the restaurant, $30 gets you a "Four Quarter Meal," with courses showing up each quarter: a cup of chili and pulled pork sliders in the first quarter, nachos and Texas smoked sausage in the second, BBQ ribs and smoked brisket in the third, and smoked hot wings in the fourth. But if you're hosting a party at your house, pitmaster Gary Wiviott has you covered. The $350 Super Bowl To Go package includes:
• 5 BBQ chickens
• 10 racks of "Chicago's Best" baby back ribs
• 60 smoked BBQ wings
• 25 Texas-style smoked sausage
• chips and guacamole
• aked beans
• mac 'n cheese
• cole slaw

"We say feeds 10 to 15, but that's if they are BBQ guys or linebackers," says Wiviott. Reserve yours on no later than Friday, Feb. 3.

Andrew Huff

Deals Sun Jan 08 2012

Frasca Celebrates National Pizza Week

While turkey neck soup, dog biscuits and pigs-in-a-blanket only get one measly day in our fecund American food day calendar, pizza has fought its way into our hearts and onto our plates so as to necessitate an entire week!

Frasca Pizzeria and Wine Bar, which haunts the corner of Paulina and Lincoln, taunting any Brown Line commuter looking for decent weekly drink and food deals, is offering to help you forget your new year resolutions, just two weeks into 2012. Starting Monday, Jan. 9, Frasca is giving away pies, hosting classes, and generally celebrating Chicago's love of pizza.

Monday, Jan. 9: Free t-shirts will be given to the first 50 people who order pizzas.
Tuesday, Jan. 10: Every pizza purchased receives a free coupon good for one free Margherita pizza (with purchase of pizza, pasta or entrée). Valid Jan 11-Feb. 11. Dine in only.
Wednesday, Jan. 11: Buy one get one free pizzas.
Thursday, Jan. 12: Pizza Week Pizza Cooking Class! 6:30pm $25 per person (includes instruction, pizza and two glasses of wine) Learn how to prepare the perfect pizza at this interactive cooking class led by Frasca's general manager, Jason Ring. Each "pizza pupil" will get to select the type of pizza they would like to make, Margherita or pepperoni, while sipping vino and learning the secrets of Frasca's famous crispy thin crusts. Reserve your spot by calling 773-248-5222.

Frasca Pizzeria and Wine Bar
3358 N. Paulina St.

Joanna Kanakis

Deals Thu Dec 01 2011

Buy Out Next for New Year's Eve

JOH_7884If you're a big spender, your New Year's Eve plans could get a lot more interesting. Posted tonight on Next Restaurant's Facebook page:

Here's something different for New Year's Eve: One Golden Ticket each to Next, the Aviary and the Office. Rather than get the tired champagne at midnight toast, why not rent out: Next for you and 61 friends; Aviary for you and 84 friends; the Office for you and 17 friends. You pick the friends, the music, the toast... let us make sure it's a genuine, once in a lifetime party. It won't be cheap, but these will be the best food and parties in the city. Email for pricing and details: / Serious inquiries only, please.

Next/Aviary/Ofice aren't the only buy-out options this New Year's Eve. Fish Bar is also available, if you win the eBay auction (opening bid is $5,000, with no bids as of 6pm Thursday.) However, as Next's Facebook manager said in the comments, "this will definitely cost more than Fish Bar :-)"

Photo by John Joh, under Creative Commons license.

Andrew Huff

News Thu Nov 03 2011

Prasino Offers Free Coffee, Gets Hit by Cab

The Wicker Park location of organic restaurant prasino, 1846 W. Division St., announced today that it's offering free coffee from 8am to 11am during the entire month of November to promote its new "on-the-go" breakfast menu. The coffee is a custom blend by Bridgeport Coffee Company, and is normally $2.50. All you have to do to get a cup is stop in and ask. There's a limit of one cup per person per day, but no limit to how many days -- which means if you're a serious freeloader you could have free coffee for the rest of the month.

Prasino's new breakfast options include housemade banana bread; breakfast tacos filled with chorizo, scrambled eggs and tomatillo salsa; and oatmeal with dried fruit.

In unrelated news, a taxi crashed into the front of the restaurant this morning, shattering the front window and sending booths flying.

prasino wicker park taxi cab crash Photo by Lisa Pugliese

"One woman was in a booth where the cab came through the window, and the booth was thrown across the restaurant," said Michelle Phelps, marketing manager at prasino. "Fortunately, she wasn't seriously injured," but the diner did seek medical attention.

Phelps said upon reviewing security video, it appeared that the cab driver accelerated too quickly from the stop sign at Marion Court and lost control of vehicle on the wet pavement. The driver was arrested taken in for questioning by the police.

Prasino is closed for the rest of the day for repairs, but hopes to open tomorrow morning.

Andrew Huff

Deals Fri Oct 07 2011

Eat at The Publican on the Cheap this Weekend

The Publican will be celebrating their third birthday all of this weekend (Friday-Sunday) with a nicely priced prix-fixe menu--three courses for $33.

Robyn Nisi

Deals Thu Sep 01 2011

Roeser's Celebrates a Century of Baked Goods

roeser's bakeryRoeser's Bakery, 3216 W. North Ave., is celebrating its 100th anniversary this fall, and as is often the custom with business anniversaries, its customers are the ones getting presents.

Starting today and running through Dec. 9, Roeser's is "100 Days of 100 Cents" special. The special $1 deals will include donuts, cupcakes, cookies, ice cream and more. According to the September specials calendar posted on Facebook, today through Sunday you can get a red velvet cupcake for $1, limit two per customer. Next week the special will be maple bacon long johns, followed by assorted "cake bites" Sept. 13-17. Call the bakery at 773-489-6900 or visit Facebook for news of future specials.

Roeser's is also giving back to the neighborhood in less fattening ways. From Sept. 1 until Dec. 22, 5 percent of the proceeds from sales of certain goods will be donated to five Humboldt Park schools: Lowell Elementary, Richard Yates Elementary, Humboldt Park Christian Academy, Stowe Elementary and Maternity BVM Schools. Each month from September through December, the school with the most sales will also receive a $500 bonus from the bakery.

Andrew Huff

Deals Tue Aug 30 2011

So You Want To Be a Barista...

cup.jpgBloomspot can help! Over the next few days, the site is offering $40 for either a Coffee 101 Class (which includes history, selection, and brewing perfection) or a Barista Basics class (which includes pulling espresso and steaming milk), both an $80 value, at Ipsento Coffee House and Roaster in Bucktown. So if you've ever felt the urge to try on a barista hat for a day, but aren't quite ready to ditch your day job to do it, here's your chance to try it on for size.

Ipsento Coffee House is located at 2035 N Western Ave Chicago, IL 60647. 773-904-8177.

Katie Johnson / Comments (1)

Deals Wed Aug 24 2011

More Bang for Your Buck at The Meatloaf Bakery

_dscf7701_sm-150x150.jpg"Meatloaf" and "bakery" aren't two words typically found in proximity to each other, at least not in my world. Who'd ever have thought you could consume an entire meal by devouring a cupcake (or as they're referred to at The Meatloaf Bakery, "loafies"). True, savory cupcakes have been on the rise for some time now, but this takes the concept to a whole new level. With the "cake" portion comprised of well, meat, and the "frosting" typically some variation of whipped potatoes or spaghetti, these meatloaf cuppers are sure to fulfill your meat and potatoes craving. And what's more, Bloomspot is offering a 50% off deal. (Offer expires in 3 days.) If purchased, you will enjoy $20 for $40 worth of TMB products. Well, what are you waiting for?
(Pictured - The Omega-3 loaf; Wild caught Alaskan salmon; rich and fluffy with a hint of lemon, parsley and dill. Topped with wasabi mashed potatoes and served with fresh lemon-dill yogurt sauce.)
The Meatloaf Bakery is located in Lincoln Park at 2464 N Clark St Chicago, IL 60614. 773-698-6667.

Katie Johnson

Deals Mon Aug 15 2011

The King of Hot Dogs

dougs_elvis.jpgTomorrow is the 34th anniversary of Elvis Presley's passing, when the poor bastard was found in his bathroom at Graceland, dead of a reported heart attack. You might be sad about Elvis today--what would he have been like were he still alive? Would Elvis still be wearing jewel-encrusted belts? Hanging with new BFF Jack White? Who knows. One thing the King would likely be doing is visiting Hot Doug's, which is paying homage to him through their Elvis-inspired t-shirt ($17). And as always, you can order the Elvis dog off the sausage emporium's menu--a simple Polish dog for a simple man.

Robyn Nisi

Deals Sat Aug 06 2011

It's a Lolla Win-Win

wristband.jpegGo to Lolla, get some deals. According to Eater Chicago, a handful of Chicago eateries are offering deals this weekend if you show your Lollapalooza wristband. Some such deals include $1 hot dogs all weekend at Bangers & Lace, half off a Ra'ckin' Roll at Ra Sushi, and half off appetizers at Theory all weekend, to name a few. Talk about a win-win!

Katie Johnson

Deals Wed Aug 03 2011

Bites with Booze @ Mercadito

photo(2).jpgUnderneath the busy, boldly colored main dining room of Mercadito sits a cozy Mexican sauna-esque private room, with raw wood and tequila bottles lining its perimeter. Tall booths surround a high center bar from which come the quirky, delicious workings of Head Bartender Paul Sauter and Chef Patricio Sandoval.

Every fourth Monday night from now to December, Mercadito is opening up their private room for a series of Spirit Dinners. Four course sharing menus are developed by infusing the "spirit of the evening" into each dish, then pairing it with a cocktail using the same spirit.

At Monday night's Tres Generaciones Tequila dinner, we worked our way from blanco (unaged) to reposado (aged 2-12 months in bourbon barrels) to anejo (aged 18 months). With each course arrived a taster of the tequila itself, a dish infused with said tequila and a cocktail made with, you guessed it, tequila. Maybe because Three G's is actually ridiculously good tequila and maybe because Chef Patricio knows his Mexican style cuisine inside and out, none of the food, nor the entire evening really, felt unnecessarily "boozy." After a slight misstep in some overly saturated jicama that appeared in our first course of mango guacamole, the rest of the meal went off without a burn. Not one cocktail, not one dish screamed BOOZE! (Which, when you consider the shot of choice for your uber-boozy friends, tequila usually makes a good standing.) Tres Generaciones isn't the kind of tequila that leaves your throat burning. Instead, a knowledgeable Tres G's rep (Armando Zapata to be exact) chartered us through the unknown waters of burn-free tequila. Bartender Paul poured variations of Mercadito standards: Three G's blanco with averna, grapefruit, ginger beer and cayenne and the reposado with muddled fresh pineapple, chile guajillo and pico piquin. These were served alongside Chef Patricio's tequila-braised pork carnitas tacos and an incredibly inventive preparation of red snapper. The fish was served whole, backbone removed, leaving two filets, both still attached at the head and tail, then was was fried and plated it like an eye of a needle, with a sumptuous mound of tequila-coconut rice and plantain salsa at its center. Check the whole menu including drinks here: spirited_201107_menu-1.pdf.

Get yourself boozed up, not boozed out at one of their upcoming dinners:

August 29: Grand Marnier
September 19: Belvedere Vodka
October 17: Fortaleza Tequila
November 21: Hennessy Cognac
December 19: El Tesoro Tequila

Tickets are $55 each. For reservations call: 312.329.9555.

*Mercadito is still running their Tacos for Strength program that we told you about back in March. This month's taco was created by Chef Ryan Poli: marinated grilled shrimp, watermelon & tomato salad with pickled red onion.

Joanna Kanakis

Deals Mon Aug 01 2011

Eat for Free at GE?

images.jpegSay it ain't so. Thanks to the alert from TastingTable Chicago, you won't miss out. TT's partner - the daily offer site, Bloomspot Chicago, is featuring a Graham Elliot giveaway today. In exchange for your email address and zip code, you will be entered to win a $500 gift certificate which will get you access to the Repertoire Menu, with wine pairings, for two. The River North restaurant's haute cuisine with a sense of humor offers such unique dishes as the deconstructed Caesar salad with a brioche Twinkie, to a chocolate cake laced with the flavors of old-fashioned sodas: root beer, birch beer and don't forget sarsaparilla. So, what are you waiting for? Enter now.

Katie Johnson

Deals Thu Jun 23 2011

Happy Hour Around Town

I've been noticing more and more happy hour specials around town -- and not just your typical "$10 pitchers and 10 cent wings" type of deals, either. Specially priced small plates and even some petite entrees seem to be increasingly available in the pre-twilight hours between work and sunset. Perhaps it's because patio season is upon us? Or perhaps just because restaurant owners feel like if you're working inside for 8 hours when the weather is so gorgeous, you probably need at least a drink? In any case, as I am a cheap young working stiff as well as a lover of fine foods, I appreciate the availability of upscale after-work snacks for less than I usually pay for River North lunch. For your after 5 planning, here's a round-up of just some of the happy hour specials around town (after the jump)...

Continue reading this entry »

Andie Cavedo

Deals Wed May 04 2011

Groupon Deal at Koval Distillery

Groupon's Deal of the Day today is a whiskey workshop at Koval, a boutique, organic distillery in Ravenswood. For $99 (as opposed to the nonGroupon price of $200), participants will get a lesson in the history of whiskey, vintage and modern distilling techniques, and then the chance to sample some small-batch American whiskeys. Astute sippers could come away with an ability to identify grain flavor and aging nuances. According to Groupon, this is a skill set that can come in handy when wooing even the most surly of father-in-law pirates.

Lori Barrett

Deals Mon May 02 2011

Golden Ticket to the Doughnut Vault

This little flash of inspired genius was sent out by the folks @doughnutvault via Twitter:

"Golden Ticket auction. Skip lines/ free doughnuts for 1 year/ limit 12 per week. Proceeds go to charity. DM twitter or FB. Highest bid wins"

If you don't realize what kind of gem this is, get yourself to 401 1/2 N. Franklin St. between 8-9 am Tuesday through Friday and after one bite you'll realize why this city has gone crazy for glazed goodness. Folks have been waiting in line for up to an hour and once they sell out of their 300-350 made per day, that's it. Word is they plan to issue one ticket per year so you'd better be aggressive.

Follow the Vault on Tumblr and Twitter for more info and DM them with your bid and you may be singing this with your mouth full and a great stupid grin on your face--Charlie Bucket style.

Joanna Kanakis

Bar Fri Apr 29 2011

Half Acre's Twin Ginger Returns Today!

Swing by Half Acre anytime today to sample one of their returning all-stars: Twin Ginger. Rate Beer gives it an extremely 90 out of 100. One commenter remarks: "Nice sweet caramel aroma with pine and citrus hops also present. Flavor is a nice balance between malt, citrus, and hop bitterness with subtle spiciness present, too. Quite a nice ipa." It does sound quite nice, actually!

Oh, and after the jump, read how you can save anywhere from eight to fifty percent on all your Twin Ginger purchases. Trust me, you'll want to read...

Continue reading this entry »

Andrew Carlin

Deals Sun Apr 17 2011

Tax break from Chicago Q

uncle_sam1.jpgDid reporting your online purchases to the Illinois tax bureau take a big chunk of fun money outta your pocket for this weekend? In order to soften the blow a bit, Chicago Q is offering a 3 course prix fixe for lunch and dinner this coming Monday, April 18th. The three-course-three-day-later menu includes a choice of appetizer, entrée and dessert and features House Bacon Cheddar Hush Puppies, Smoked Dry-Rubbed Wings, Pulled Pork or Kobe Brisket Sandwiches for lunch, and Half Slab Baby Back or St. Louis Ribs for dinner. Nothing washes down tax season like a little barbecue.

Chicago Q
1160 N. Dearborn St 312.642.1160

Joanna Kanakis

Deals Tue Mar 01 2011

Chicago Restaurant Week, Extended

We gave you a heads up on Chicago Restaurant week but if you just weren't quite fast enough on Open Table we've got good news: 60 restaurants are extending their deals. We're including a few of our favorites below, plus you can check Chicago Tribune's The Stew for the whole list.

Extended through Thursday, March 3.

Extended through Sunday, March 6.

Extended through Sunday, March 6.

Extended through Thursday, March 31.

Lunch menu only extended through Sunday, March 6.

Extended through Thursday, March 31.

Extended through Sunday, March 6.

Extended through Thursday, March 31.

Extended through Sunday, March 6.

Joanna Kanakis / Comments (1)

Deals Wed Feb 09 2011

Smooching for Starfruit

If you're out in Wicker Park this Saturday, or Lincoln Park this Sunday, Starfruit frozen kefir shop would like to take a photo of you and your sweetie, and in return, you'll receive a coupon for a sweet treat.

Here's the deal: Between 2-4pm, you and your SO (significant other) make a post-brunch trip for dessert to Starfruit. There, a photog will flash the two of you puckering up, and you get a BOGO (buy-one-get-one) coupon for some more fro-yo*. You can retrieve your fancy pro pic later at Starfruit's Facebook page.

-Starfruit Café in Wicker Park, 1745 W. Division St.
-Starfruit Café in Lincoln Park, 2142 N. Halsted St

*JK! (Just kidding!) Starfruit isn't made with yogurt, it's made with kefir - a probiotic beverage made from fermented milk, and is similar to drinkable yogurt.

Jen Bacher

Deals Tue Feb 08 2011

Tour de Cafe: Explore Chicago's Coffee Shops

tourdecafe.jpgFor coffee drinkers, the newly launched Tour de Cafe offers a deal that's hard to pass up. For $20, you get passport entitling you to a cup of coffee at each of 20 of the city's independent coffee shops on the North and West Sides and Evanston -- from ING Direct up to Other Brother, from Dollop to New Wave.

Among the 20 shops are a couple that roast their own beans, including Asado, Filter, Metropolis and Star Lounge. Throw in the Bridgeport Coffee Company beans at Cafe Mustache and the Intelligentsia beans at Coffee Studio and elsewhere, and you've got a sampling of pretty much all the artisanal coffee roasters in town represented (if not Intelligentsia stores themselves). The passport is good from March 1, 2011 till March 1, 2012 which should give you plenty of time to make it through them all.

Andrew Huff

Deals Fri Jan 28 2011

Hungry for a Deal?

ce.jpgIf there is one thing I love more than food (gasp!) it's scoring a good deal. I get a natural high from clipping coupons and looking for a discount all in the name of saving a few dollars. It's true - I'm a closet cheapo.

But, what really whets my appetite? Eating great Chicago food on the cheap.

Now I'm not talking about taking your girlfriend out to McDonald's and letting her get one of everything on the Dollar Menu (although that does sound quite fabulous). I'm talking great Chicago food at even better prices.

With a few clicks of your mouse you too can eat like royalty, and not just once a year when Grandma cuts you that oh-so fabulous $50 birthday check.

Continue reading this entry »

Leah Sallen

Deals Thu Jan 20 2011

DMK Giving Away Free Bardstown Bacon-Bomber Milkshakes

Okay, well, that's not exactly true. It's not "free" in the literal sense that it will cost you no money. If you want to get all technical about it, this bourbon, bacon, toffee milkshake concoction is actually going to cost you $15. But that $15 includes a 2011 DMK Burger Bar Calendar, the proceeds of which go to the Greater Chicago Food Depository as part of their 365 Days of Giving campaign. So to put it all in perspective, for a mere $15 you get a milkshake that tastes like the best stuff on earth, a (probably) pretty decent calendar, and the warm, fuzzy feeling inside that you've helped feed this city's impoverished. Not a bad deal. [DMK Burger Bar]

Andrew Carlin

Deals Wed Jan 12 2011

Restaurant Week Returns

Mark your calendars and make your reservations now - Chicago Restaurant Week is coming back, February 18-27 (because "Chicago Restaurant 9 Day Period" was too much of a mouthful). As in the past, diners can opt for a prix-fixe lunch ($22) or dinner ($33) at any number of Chicago eating establishments, both new and old. Dining options, including each restaurant's official menu, are available on the website, as well as reservations -- be aware, this is a popular and well-known event at this point, and tables will fill up. So if you really REALLY have you eye on eating at Blackbird, think it and your schedule over now before it's too late.

This year, the event organizers are sweetening the deal by giving away $100 dining gift cards, one every day until the end of Restaurant Week on February 28 (visit their Facebook site and hit "Like" to be automatically entered), as well as providing menu updates, recipes and interviews on their blog. Eat it up, Chicago, indeed.

Andie Cavedo

Deals Fri Jan 07 2011

Sick of Cupcakes? Even If They're Free?

Chicago may have hit cupcake overload, but still: you can't beat free. Sprinkles Cupcakes will be offering free preview samples of their new flavor, German Chocolate, on Tuesday, January 11, from 7 to 9 p.m. -- three days before the flavor officially hits the store's shelves. Complimentary drinking chocolate will also be served, so chocolate-loving cheapskates: rejoice. Then be sure to RSVP.

Sunny McDaniel

Deals Wed Dec 29 2010

Happy Birthday Dunlays On The Square

On Thursday, January 6, Dunlays On The Square will be offering all their menu items, and every bar beverage for $6 to celebrate their sixth birthday at the Logan Square location. What does this mean for you? Well it means that you can get those BBQ pork wraps with smoke daddy pulled pork, napa cabbage, carrots, and cilantro with plum sauce, a glass of Prosecco, and the Lyonnaise salad with potato strings, bacon, poached egg with a red wine vinaigrette for $18, which normally would have cost you $27.50. And yes, that is what I will be having. I think it goes without saying that bottles of wine will not be six dollars and menu items that are under six dollars will be their normal price, but in case you didn't know it's true.

Mark it on your calendars and take advantage of this great deal to help Dunlays celebrate their 6th anniversary.

Dunlays on the Square
3137 West Logan Blvd
Chicago, IL 60647
773 227 2400

Renee Barone

Deals Thu Dec 09 2010

There's No Such Thing As a Free Lunch

But there is such a thing as a free breakfast, especially if you're an early-morning downtown commuter.

On Tuesday, December 14, the new Einstein Bros. Bagels location at Lake and Michigan will be giving away coupons for 52 free breakfast sandwiches to the first 100 people standing in line. (No, you can't have them all at once -- it's a sandwich a week, and the coupon's only good at the 180 N. Michigan Avenue location. And for some obscure breakfast security reason, you've got to be 18 or older, with valid photo ID, to score a coupon.) The shop opens at 5:30 a.m., so get there, um, earlier.

On Wednesday, December 15, there'll be free coffee at the Merchandise Mart Brown Line station from 6 to 10 a.m., courtesy of CuddlDuds.

Hey, we didn't say you'd get the whole free breakfast simultaneously.

Sunny McDaniel

Event Wed Dec 08 2010

What are You Doing New Year's?

I'm not sure yet where I'll be watching the ball drop this December 31st, and if you're not either, we've got a round-up of some good options here in the city. Some are nice sit-down dinner affairs with beverage pairings, and others are open bars that happen to have food. Not everyone has announced their parties yet though, so if we missed something or it was announced justnow, feel free to post it in the comments.

Continue reading this entry »

Jen Bacher / Comments (3)

Deals Mon Nov 29 2010

Toys for Tots, Dessert for You

Pilsen's Ciao Amore, 1134 W. 18th St., is holding a Toys for Tots toy drive, and has a nice enticement to get you to join in. Until Dec. 13, each table that brings a new, unused toy will be given a free dessert of day.

Andrew Huff

Deals Wed Nov 24 2010

Free Sandwiches at Hannah's Bretzel

There is such a thing as a free lunch and it is happening on November 29 - December 1. Hannah's Bretzel, the city's first Certified Green fast casual restaurant, is offering up free breakfast and lunch sandwiches from Monday to Wednesday of next week to celebrate the opening of their third store.

So put the left-over turkey down and head to 131 S. Dearborn (near Adams) and be one of the lucky people at these times to get a free 'wich:

MONDAY 11.29
12:30pm = 25 customers for lunch sandwich + side + beverage
1:30pm = 25 customers for lunch sandwich + side + beverage

8:00am = 25 customers for breakfast sandwich + beverage
12:30pm = 50 customers for lunch sandwich + side + beverage or large soup + bretzel + beverage or salad + beverage
1:30pm = 50 customers for lunch sandwich + side + beverage or large soup + bretzel + beverage or salad + beverage

8:00am = 25 customers for breakfast sandwich + beverage
11:30am = 100 customers for lunch sandwich + side + beverage or large soup + bretzel + beverage or salad + beverage

FREE BRETZEL HAND OUTS ON ADAMS = numerous Bretzels per day on 11.29 / 11.30 / 12.1 will be handed out in front of the store.

Hannah's Bretzel
131 S. Dearborn
Chicago, IL 60603

Renee Barone

Deals Fri Nov 19 2010

Cab and Cow Lunch

Friday afternoons just got a little nicer. David Burke's Primehouse is offering a $15 Cab and Cow lunch special through the holidays -- two 5-ounce dry aged burgers paired with two Cabernet Sauvignons. Guaranteed to make the rest of the work day, or the rest of your holiday errands, much more pleasant.

Sunny McDaniel

Deals Tue Nov 16 2010

Pilsen Restaurant Feeds Those who Feed the Poor

This time of year seems to bring out the best in most people. Giving to those in need is always heart warming - but it's nice when people take care of you, too.

Al Teatro in Pilsen is doing just that. The authentic Italian restaurant is hosting a food drive from Thursday, Nov. 18 through Wednesday, Nov. 24. Bring in at least three canned goods and you'll be the recipient of a free appetizer.

Diners can drop off their cans anytime between 4pm and closing and receive a complimentary appetizer. This offer is only good for dine-in customers. Al Teatro is located at 1227 W. 18th Street.

Kaitlin Olson

Deals Wed Nov 03 2010

Do Deals Make the Drinks Taste Sweeter?

The newest iteration of the daily-deal phenomenon is My Drink On, a group-couponing site offering drink deals for Chicago bars.

Tomorrow, November 4, MDO hosts its 8pm-1am launch party at Rebel Bar & Grill (3462 N. Clark St.). Rebel is also the location of its very first featured deal: $40 worth of drinks for $20. For celebration's sake, buying the deal is not required for the complimentary cocktail reception (8-10pm).

Ruthie Kott

Deals Wed Nov 03 2010

DeColores Celebrates Birthday

East Pilsen's quaint and fresh Mexican restaurant DeColores (1626 S. Halsted) is celebrating their recent birthday with a delicious and affordable ($16.95) special--a Chicken Roulade stuffed with spinach, tomato, and goat cheese smothered in a cream of poblano sauce, and a poblano pepper stuffed with white garlic rice and mozzarella cheese, smothered in a tomato basil cream.

Jesse Sirkus-Brown

Deals Thu Oct 21 2010

Fear Not Those Dreaded Words: Holiday Shopping

Get everyone crossed off your list early this year -- as in, by the end of October -- and save some cash in the process. The Chopping Block is offering discounts of up to 20% at both the Merchandise Mart and Lincoln Square locations during the rest of the month. At the former, just spin the big wheel: whatever number comes up is the percentage discount you'll get. At the latter, you can dip into a bucket and pull your discount by hand.

And if you'd rather bet on a sure thing, just hit up the store's Customer Appreciation Days next month, where everything in the entire store will be 20% off -- no luck needed -- and you can sample wines, light hors d'oeuvres, and tasty retail products to book. The Mart's CA Day is Monday, November 1 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; the Square will fete its patrons on Thursday, November 11 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Sunny McDaniel / Comments (1)

Restaurant Thu Oct 07 2010

Work Finally Pays Off - 2

Lakeview pub Firkin & Pheasant has a Monday is Industry Night special. Diners can bring in their pay stubs to receive 25% off the total bill. So, you can stop in after work for a Firkin burger (or some Firkin bangers and mash) and a Firkin beer, then leave full and happy and less inclined to pepper your speech with F-words.

Lori Barrett

Deals Wed Oct 06 2010

Work Finally Pays Off

Don't bother changing after work. In two weeks, DMK Burger Bar will introduce Uniform Wednesdays. Anyone dining before 6 p.m. in a work uniform will get 25% knocked off the bill, and active or recently discharged members of the military will eat for free. The savings start October 20.

Sunny McDaniel

Chef Mon Sep 27 2010

Dinner at C-House with Top Chef Masters' Marcus Sammuelson and Tony Mantuano

Tonight C-House will host a private dinner party benefiting Friends of the Fisherman, a Louisiana Fisherman organization. C-House's Marcus Sammuelson and Spiaggia's Tony Mantuano will be cooking up their favorite home cooked dishes from their latest cookbooks and dinner will be served with select craft beers from Goose Island. Both chef's will be available to sign their cookbooks after the event.

Tickets are $125 and seating is limited. While it's a lot of money, I am sure the food will be amazing. I've personally met both chefs at different events and they are as kind and gracious as can be! To make a reservation for tonight call 312-523-0923.

Renee Barone

Deals Tue Sep 21 2010

It's My Pierogi-tive

Wicker Park's LOKal, 1904 W. North Ave., will be dishing out all you can eat pierogis for only $10 a head every Wednesday.

Hit up the restaurant between 10:30pm and 12:30am to partake in the deal; a rotating DJ will be spinning music while you indulge in the endless fare.

With fillings including truffle, duck confit, butternut squash, pumpkin, potato, sweet and sour cabbage, sweet potato, mushroom, BBQ braised pork and beef you're sure to be saying "hit me baby one more time".

Leah Sallen

Event Wed Sep 15 2010

Famous Food

arigold.jpgI love punny sandwich names as much as the next person, but the Happy Bodega food truck has taken it to a...level. Some kind of level. Celebrating Entourage's arrival in syndication (bye-bye, sex scenes), Happy Bodega is giving away free food this Friday, September 17 -- with sandwich names like the "Hug It Out Ham Baguette" (ham and gruyere) and the "The Veg-'E' Baguette"(brie, tomato, and basil) -- oh, it's "E" because there's a character called "E"!

The truck will be parked in the Loop (Jackson and Wells) from 11am-3pm, and in Wicker Park (Damen and Milwaukee) from 6-10pm. It's probably as close to Jeremy Piven as you're ever gonna get. CORRECTION: The Happy Bodega truck will be in Wicker Park (Damen and Milwaukee) from 6-10pm this Friday, Sept. 17, and in the Loop at Jackson and Wells for lunch from 11am-3pm on Oct. 1.

Ruthie Kott

Deals Thu Sep 09 2010

Dine Out Tonight for Common Threads

Common Threads.pngTonight 5% of your purchase at the The Bristol, The Elysian, Urban Belly, Belly Shack, and Milk & Honey will all go to benefit Common Threads charity. Common Threads helps teach young children hands-on approaches to health cooking. Make a reservation, help support a great cause and of course, enjoy a tasty meal tonight!

Renee Barone / Comments (1)

Chicago Gourmet Mon Aug 30 2010

Sometimes It's Good To Get Around.

Case in point? Chicago Gourmet 2010 taking place Sept. 24-26 in Millennium Park.

While you could shell out 150 bucks on a one day pass you may want to consider making better use of your hard earned cash by dining out at specified restaurants between Aug. 30 and Sept. 26 to earn a free ticket to the event. All you need to do is order from the prix-fixe menu at any five participating Dine Around restaurants, save the receipts, and present them in a special receipt holder (available at any one of the restaurants) at registration.

With eateries like Quartino, Sixteen and Branch 27 participating, you'd be a prude to say no.

Leah Sallen

Bar Wed Aug 18 2010

Get educated: Pizza & Beer School

You've been looking longingly at shiny new pencils and today's version of the trapper keeper, but it's time to smarten up, grown up style. Ian's Pizza in Wrigleyville & Sheffield's Bar are hooking up to host their second annual Pizza and Beer School. Your class schedule is as follows:

  • Mac n' Cheese pizza with Lagunitas Czech Style Pils

  • Dimo Florentine pizza (feta, chopped tomato, & spinach) with Ommegang Hennepin Saison

  • Sheffield's BBQ pizza with Robert the Bruce Scottish Ale

  • S'more pizza with New Holland Dragon's Milk and Framboise half & half

Get schooled Wednesday, August 25th at 7:00 pm ready with $30, an empty stomach and summer-lulled mind.

Sheffield's Bar
258 N. Sheffield Ave
RSVP: or call 773.716.7200.

Joanna Kanakis / Comments (1)

Deals Tue Aug 10 2010

Say the F Word; Save Some Money

Fridays in August, self-identified foodies can save 25% on their dinner tab at Sola. Just mention "Foodie Fridays" to your server, or when making your reservation, and you'll get a discounted bill. You'll have to say the f word out loud in public, but for once, that'll be a good thing.

Sunny McDaniel

Brunch Thu Aug 05 2010

Mimosas at Moles

During brunch time at Chef Geno Bahena's restaurant Los Moles (3140 N Lincoln Ave.), you can soak up a hangover and start a new one with the restaurant's $10 bottomless mimosas, every Sunday starting August 8. Also on the menu: huevos rancheros, chilaquiles, and machacado con huevo (essentially, eggs mixed with beef jerky).

None of Bahena's famous mole on the brunch menu, though--if you want that, you have to come back for dinner.

Ruthie Kott

Deals Sun Jul 18 2010

Mostly Free Gelato @ Go Roma

I didn't know that in 1984 President Ronald Reagan designated July as National Ice Cream Month, nor did I know that the third Sunday of July is designated as National Ice Cream Day.

But the clever folks at Go Roma did, and today the Go Roma at 848 N. State St. is offering a complimentary scoop of their gelato to patrons who purchase an entree.

So if you're downtown today and have a hankering for vanilla, chocolate, strawberry, burnt caramel or cappuccino gelato (plus lemon sorbet), you now know where to go for a free scoop!

Cliff Etters

Event Fri Jul 16 2010

Hot Pig on Pig Action

paddy-pig16.jpgIf eating a slowly roasted pig isn't gluttonous enough for you, try eating one that's basted in beer and bacon fat. Oh, and I forgot to mention the "weave of hickory-smoked bacon on its back." You can stuff yourself and come back for more at Paddy Long's all-you-can-eat pig roast, every Friday and Saturday starting today through the end of the summer. $22 (but plenty of places offer a $10-off deal); no reservations necessary (but to ensure a spot, you can book online); Paddy Long's, 1028 W. Diversey Pkwy, 7-9pm.
Photo courtesy of

Ruthie Kott

Deals Mon Jul 12 2010

Double Your Breakfast at e.leaven

E.leaven Food Company celebrates their first anniversary in Chicago this month, and they wanted to do something nice for their customers. Since they were named "Best Bagel in the City" by Daily Candy Chicago in June, bagels were the obvious choice.

Today through Friday, July 16, come into the shop at 54 E. Ontario and buy one bagel with cream cheese, and you'll and get a second one free. How's that for an anniversary treat?

Andrew Huff

GB store

Feature Thu Dec 31 2015

The State of Food Writing

By Brandy Gonsoulin

In 2009, food blogging, social media and Yelp were gaining popularity, and America's revered gastronomic magazine Gourmet shuttered after 68 years in business. Former Cook's Illustrated editor-in-chief Chris Kimball followed with an editorial, stating that "The shuttering of Gourmet reminds...
Read this feature »

GB store



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