October 18, 2014

Parachute Chicago

by Sun

My favorite eating place has been changing quite often nowadays. When I declare on one restaurant to be my favorite, that belief doesn't seem to last for more than 1 or 2 years after going back two or three times.

That's how hard it is to achieve consistency with food! After letting the whole world know that one certain place is the best in town, it's not a good feeling to take back your declaration, but it needs to be done.

I have returned to Parachute 4 times now and I'm glad to tell you that the food is as good as the first time!!! I like Parachute for many reasons. Naturally, the food is the key, but it also has a cozy and creative atmosphere, brilliantly but casually brought to light by the organic interior space design which repurposes materials not usually seen.

We love the wall-long cabnite-shelves, made old speakers from the 1970s which individually are a bit ugly, but together make quite a statement, and they actually work. There is long rectangular lamp (made out of compressed plywood) that continues over the bar and communal table and work as the main lighting of the entire dining room. Even the curtains are made of parachute fabric. Nothing is overly stated or calls for attention here. Everything just feels right and down to earth.

Beverly and John are a husband and wife team. Beverly worked in Chicago's premiere restaurants and competed in Top Chef - an American reality show.

Having your own restaurant seems to be her natural next step. I met them at a friend's party a couple of years ago. Back then, their plan was to open a Korean street food inspired restaurant in the South side of Chicago but obviously the plan changed completely regarding the kind of food and location.
Parachute is a fusion of Korean and International cuisine. The location is little further on the North side. For me, It doesn't matter where the restaurant is. I'll drive for good food wherever it is!

If you are in the mood to taste something you haven't tasted before parachute yourself down to Parachute and be delighted!

October 4, 2014

Chanterelle Mushrooms With Orzo

by Marjan (text and recipe) & Anja (pictures)

“EXTRA- EXTRA! Gold rush is back in California!” My latest adventures at our local Farmer’s Market permitted me to seize golden chanterelle nuggets! For me, I have struck gold and I feel rich!
Hopefully you are able to take advantage of the limited time golden chanterelle mushrooms are available in the market for consumption. I can’t get enough of the delicate velvety morsels that melt in my mouth. I wish I could savor these flavors all year long. Unfortunately, these exotic mushrooms are available for a very short time here in southern Cali.

Rather than serving them as a side dish, I prefer to have chanterelle shine as the central ingredient. This star is too bright to share the spotlight, in my opinion! Therefore, this recipe is a complete vegetarian meal. However, if you really need to serve fish, poultry or beef, I believe my recipe for Chanterelle Orzo would be a wonderful compliment side dish.
Light, healthy, and delicious, this recipe is sure to please. You too will feel as if you struck Gold!

September 20, 2014

Chicago Eats

by Anja

It's been short, but sweet. The days I spent visiting Sun in Chicago.
We made the most out of it and explored the city by car, foot, bicycle, boat, and paddle board. So much fun we had. And of course we ate like there was no tomorrow. Sun had planned every single meal and all I needed to do was sit down and wait for my plates to be filled.

We went to Summer House Santa Monica for lunch and breakfast. Great, vibrant atmosphere and good food. It really did feel like being in Santa Monica.

Parachute was a highlight. A neighborhood restaurant that serves globally inspired Korean American cuisine. Beverly and John were the greatest hosts and made our evening a true pleasure and unforgetable experience. Sun will devote a full post to this special restaurant, so I will keep my little retrospect short. A thorough review is coming up.

Another great night was spent at  Girl and the Goat. Among our favorites that night were the fried zucchini flowers, the crisp braised pork shank, and the pan roasted halibut. Unfortunately this place gets packed and loud, so we decided to go to a quieter, more relaxing place for dessert and drinks.

We went to Fig & Olive and enjoyed sitting on the roof-top patio. We had a wonderful time, enjoyed fine cocktails and dessert (chocolate souffle and creme brulee cheesecake) and I'd definitely like to try their food one day.

Kai Zan was our favorite experience this week. Amazing food! Try their escolar pearls, maguro pearls, calamari fry, angry crab, orange rush. Or better yet, go for the chef's choice, a multi-course menu full of pleasant surprises.

I have to say that - in my humble opinion - not even Grace could beat the Kai Zan experience. Among one of the finer tasting menu restaurants Chicago has to offer, food and service was without a question good, yet for some reason we couldn't get excited that evening. Maybe it was because it was our last and a bit of sadness lingered on that evening. But maybe really the people at Kai Zan just knew how to better please and surprise our tastebuds.

Oh, and yes, by coincidence we found this doughnut truck. So cute, I couldn't resist taking tons of pictures.

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