YoYoPedro's Profile

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Schwa Substitute for week after Christmas

I would definitely second the reco for Bonsoirée. Some of the best food in Chicago, in an unpretentious, un-stuffy BYOB atmosphere. But phone way ahead for reservations, as it is a smaller place and they book up fast, especially if you are thinking of a weekend.

Dec 22, 2008
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Where can I find Pisco Sours in Chicago?

The Matchbox on Ogden & Milwaukee makes a very nice pisco sour.

Dec 22, 2008
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Where can I find an authentic Spanish restaurant?

Cafe Iberico on LaSalle St.

Dec 22, 2008
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Need to break out of our Gibsons rut!

Can't speak to the food, but La Pomme Rouge has an amazing champagne list for a restaurant. Keefer's is a great food place, if you like Gibson's but need a change.

Mar 26, 2008
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

where to eat on Argyle

How about another suggestion instead?

Mar 13, 2008
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Restaurant Week

Sepia isn't one of the Restaurant Week participants, according to the website.

http://www.choosechicago.com/eatitup/...

Feb 24, 2008
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

New Yorker seeks Chicago Steakhouse comparable to Peter Luger?

I have to agree that in 25 years of dining in Chicago restaurants, my singular worst experience was at the Chicago Chop House. I would never return. Long story short, while dining out with a client, I asked for the manager to deal with an issue. The hostess told me that she was the owner's wife as well as the manager and that "they did not need my business." My client had chosen the place, and was extremely apologetic. We both swore never to return. There are far too many places in this town that do NEED and WANT my business.

Jan 01, 2008
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Blu Coral Sushi (Wicker Park); Any Thoughts?

I've never been there, but I find it a little off-putting that they'd name a sushi restaurant after a famous car wax... ;-)

Dec 22, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Lost in the <insert decade here>

Sabatino's on West Irving Park in Chicago is a 60's or 70's old school Italian joint that is still relevant, in its own way. I love it.

Dec 17, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Can you order from Frontera menu at Topolobampo at lunch?

I know that you can order from the Topolo menu on the Frontera side, I have done it many times, but I have never heard of the other way around. That is not to say it can't be done...

Nov 13, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Real BBQ in Chicagoland

Strange that you would mention Stephen Raichlen of BBQ University. The 4 times I watched his show always involved cooking food on a gas or charcoal grill, never on a smoker. The supposed BBQ purists have shot me down pretty hard for not playing up the difference between "true BBQ" and grilling. I don't share that belief, I say BBQ can be whatever the BBQ-er wants it to be. I'm just sayin'...

Nov 06, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Fried grasshoppers?

They serve them minced up and fried with a lot of salt and chiles at La Oaxaquena, but not in tacos, more almost like a condiment that you sprinkle on other foods. They are REALLY salty, too salty to be in a taco. But maybe they would prepare them differently upon request.

Nov 01, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Alinea: it converted me

Thank you! (Hands clapping). Much appreciated.

Oct 24, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Extra-Spicy Bloody Maria

I think that if she's such a hot babe, she should be spicy, not warm. Does she have a fever? I know, I know, there are exceptions to every rule, but...

Oct 24, 2007
YoYoPedro in Recipes

Solo eating near Chicago Ave. / State St.

Frontera Grill, at the bar, for lunch (or dinner). Top notch service, you'll never feel alone (unless you want to) and the regional Mexican cuisine and first-rate margaritas are tough to beat. And it is VERY only-in-Chicago. In the 400 block of N. Clark St., right around the corner from Illinois St.. Perhaps a 15 minute walk from Chicago and State.

Oct 23, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Help identifying an Italian restaurant?

I'd say La Scarola or Bella Notte, both on W. Grand Ave. Club Lucky doesn't have too many "older waitstaff in B&W". Maybe in all black, but...

Oct 03, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Monday or Tuesday deals

Opera is excellent, especially if you've never been there. But as a big fan of the Prix Fixe deals at all 3 places, I've tired a bit of Opera's menu options. I've just had the same favorite dishes too many times, need to give it a rest. But it is excellent. Marche seems to have more varied daily specials in addition to the regular menu, so I always enjoy seeing what the night will bring. La Sardine is also good, but the ambiance just isn't there for me. It's a little too quiet and dark. Last time I was there it just seemed kind of dead. But the food was quite good. So for me, the order would be Marche, then Opera, and La Sardine last.

Sep 29, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Chili cheese fries (with REAL cheese)

Who said cream cheese isn't real cheese? Let me at 'em! ;-)

Sep 17, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Chili cheese fries (with REAL cheese)

All of our floor sweepings from the cutting room were Grade A or AA cheddar. Our cheese spread never showed "floor sweepings" in the ingredient list. But nevertheless, Merkt's is not the same as cheese. It can be very tasty, and for some people it may be judged neither better nor worse than real cheese, it is very cheese-like, but it is not cheese.

Sep 17, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Chili cheese fries (with REAL cheese)

My bad, I thought you were lumping all 3 (cream cheese, Merkt's and Co-Jack) into the same CHEESE category.

Sep 17, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Chili cheese fries (with REAL cheese)

Merkt's is cold pack cheese food. There are other ingredients besides cheese in it. It contains cheese, but it is not technically able to be called "cheese" according to FDA labeling requirements. I never worked at Merkt's, but I grew up in Wisconsin and was a cheesemaker at a large dairy plant for 5 years after I graduated from high school. The cheese spread that we made there was made from trimmings (including floor sweepings, albeit a sanitized clean-room type floor) from the cutting room where the 40lb. blocks of cheddar and colby were trimmed into retail packages. The greatest amount of trim came from making so-called "longhorn-style" packs, where the square corners were cut off to make the cheese rounded. Various other "dairy products" were added to gain the consistency and flavor desired. I believe that Merkt's would be made from similar ingredients, but am not sure exactly which ones. Cream cheese is an unripened cheese, but a cheese nevertheless. Co-Jack (or Colby-Jack) is a real cheese that is made by simply mixing the Colby and Monterey Jack curds together as they are being salted and put into the hoops for pressing. But Merkt's is NOT cheese, although cheese is one of the ingredients in its manufacture.

http://a257.g.akamaitech.net/7/257/24...

Sep 16, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Chili cheese fries (with REAL cheese)

Can't speak to the chili cheese fries, but personally I don't find the mosquitos worth eating, you just have to eat too many before you ever feel "full." Cicadas, on the other hand, are great raw, right off the tree, or for a real treat, sauteed in garlic & butter and served with jasmine rice.

Sep 15, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Onigiri to be had in this town?

You need to learn the Google! :-)

First try came up with this:

Date: June 25, 2007
Foodies note: Unlock the "secret" Japanese menu at Itto Sushi

Posted by Monica Eng at 5:45 p.m. CDT

As a lot of curious local foodies have learned that plenty of ethnic restaurants harbor secret menus for people from their own culture, not so much because they're being exclusionary, but because they don't want to freak out less-adventurous diners with dishes restaurateurs think they will find too prosaic, too esoteric or too scary.

Over the last couple of years, LTHForum has translated a bunch of Thai and Chinese menus around town and metromix.com offered a round-up of a few of these spots.

We recently discovered such a "secret" menu at Itto Sushi, one of Chicago's oldest Japanese sushi houses and one of the few that is actually Japanese owned and run. I mentioned to co-owner Keiko Hatori (wife of sushi chef Juco Hatori) that sometimes I have a hankering for a good onigiri (like a handheld triangular maki sandwich with a bit of fish or pickled plum inside) or a creamy chawanmushi (rich savory custard), but can rarely find them in the city.

She responded by showing me the Japanese menu which features both of those items along with dishes like the less appetizing (in my book) sticky fermented soybean called natto ($4) and a rice and tea soup called ochazuki for $5.95. One onigiri costs $2.75 and a chawanmushi goes for $6.75.

Another interesting fact about Itto that we discovered during our visit there is that regulars can help save the trees (albeit in small way) by keeping their own laquered chopsticks there boxed up, labeled and ready to use every time they dine.

Itto Sushi, 2616 N. Halsted St.; 773-871-1800

Aug 31, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Roast Pig anywhere

"Pig in milk" is just the literal translation to English from the French word for "suckling pig." It is not cooked in milk, and milk is not used in the recipe. Lechon and cochon are both roasted pigs, one is Spanish, one is French. Here is a link to a Cajun recipe for "cochon de lait" or, in English, "suckling pig."

http://generalhorticulture.tamu.edu/p...

Aug 27, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Roast Pig anywhere

The OP said it doesn't matter what style. But if it has Cajon in it...

Aug 25, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Great salad selection

I know it sounds crazy, but the salad bar at Fogo de Chao has to be the nicest salad bar I've ever encountered. And it can be ordered sans the red meat feast that the restaurant is famous for. Although, personally, I couldn't go there and not eat the meat.

Aug 03, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Good BYOB Thai Place?

Butterfly Sushi & Thai in the 1100 block of West Grand is a nice neighborhoody place that encourages BYOB, brings ice buckets, etc. And gives you the option to have great sushi with or instead of your Thai food.

Jul 24, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Report on Chicago trip 1 (long)

I had heard that Heat is closed. But Naniwa,on Wells St. at Ontario St., is excellent for sushi IMO.

Jul 15, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

Looking for a fun and upscale dinner spot

I was always underwhelmed by Blackbird, but have eaten almost monthly @ Marche for a few years and still love it.

Jul 04, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area

East-coast Style Pizza

Strangely enough, I have read many great reviews of the pizza place in the Mobil station on N. Halsted St. just north of Division St. I have never had the pleasure, but the posters spoke highly of it as a New York-style, by-the-slice take out place.

Jul 04, 2007
YoYoPedro in Chicago Area