Giant Food Media Roundup: Food Glue, Fancy Hot Dogs, Frozen Custard

Welcome to the giant food media roundup, where we see what’s hot — and what’s to trot — in Chicago right now.

• Lisa Shames reports that smart chefs are now using “food glue” in everyday dishes; it’s not just for molecular gastronomists anymore [TOC]

• Bill Daley’s let’s-ask-top-Chicago-chefs-for-gourmet-off-beat-hot-dog-recipes idea was a pretty good one. But we have to say, Charlie Trotter’s Asian seared tuna dog is not going to happen outside of a whimsical high-low restaurant [Tribune]

• Chuck Sudo dumbs himself down to Sun-Times readership level for a roundup of barbecue places that have opened in the past year. Can you imagine not knowing about these places (Smoque, Honky Tonk) the second they open, at the latest? Ah, ignorance is bliss [Sun-Times]

• Michael Tsonton of copperblue reminds you that fresh spices are just as important as fresh produce and meat and what have you [Sun-Times]

• Monica Eng knows that now is the time for frozen custards. She investigates the treat’s tentative foray into the city limits [Tribune]

• Graham Elliot’s eponymous new restaurant is opening imminently. Get excited! [TOC]

• Last week, we missed Mike Sula’s profile on Willi Lehner, possibly Wisconsin’s most famous cheesemaker at the moment. New to us: spraying dirt on cheese makes it delicious [Reader]

And the reviews:

• Both Phil Vettel and Heather Shouse go to Shochu, the Asian tapas lounge. These two reviews are a little more sober than previous ones, highlighting the restaurant’s reasonable value while faulting some of the dishes for being boring. Still, it’s good for the neighborhood [TOC, Trib]

• David Tamarkin is quite smitten with Mado, the new chef-driven seasonal American in Bucktown. They have an ever-changing menu that is fabulous when everything is cooked right, which is most of the time, but should something go wrong, the super-simple fare has little pomp and circumstance to fall back on [TOC]

• Denise O’Neal takes a much less critical route than Heather Shouse did when she reviewed Park 52 a few weeks back. O’Neal finds the food — mostly standard Kleiner upscale comfort — “worth the trip,” while Shouse pointedly does not [Sun-Times]

[Photo: mmm…enzymes, via wurmouroboros/flickr]


Giant Food Media Roundup: Food Glue, Fancy Hot Dogs, Frozen Custard