Belle Isle Seafood

Belle Isle

Before living on the East Coast, I’d never tried a lobster roll. Since moving to Chicago, I’ve learned that Giuseppe Tentori‘s rolls do the trick, but at quite a price. For a little more than the cost of a Big Mac, Boston’s Belle Isle Seafood will overwhelm your plate with Hulk Hogan-sized hunks of lobster. It’s definitely worth a stop on your way to-and-from Boston’s Logan Airport.

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Basil Hayden’s & Winter Session at Warby Parker’s Annex

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Earlier this year, my good friends Roy Katz and Tanya Fleisher at Winter Session asked me to bring Basil Hayden’s to a party at Warby Parker’s Annex in New York’s Meatpacking District. The coolest dude, Fedora’s Fernando Trujillo tended bar.

For the complete rundown, head over to Whiskey. Among Other Things….

The Ballad of S.E. Kiser

A couple weeks ago, my friend Michael Kiser asked me to play his great-great-uncle, noted Chicago poet S.E. Kiser, at a beergathering called the Mash Tun Festival. To learn more about S.E. and see some hysterical photos of my performance go to Good Beer Hunting.

Tonight in Nashville: Support the Belcourt Theatre’s nD Festival

A. Micah Smith will have this poster for sale tonight at Imogene + Willie.

Joe Gannon and I will be there, partying hard, dancing to the tunes of Shelly Colvin, drinking plenty of Yazoo Brew.

It’s tonight, Thursday September 13th at Imogene + Willie from 6-8 pm and it’s all in support of The Belcourt Theatre’s nD Fest. We’ll be set up flea market-style with some new T-shirts, new Kamp Kits, and some other fresh goods from Buckshot Sonny’s. The market will feature the wares of Billy Reid, Emil Erwin, A. Micah Smith, Otis James, and others. Get thee to Imogene + Willie.

Get your tickets here.

Bow Truss Coffee Roasters Presents: Max Wastler’s All Plaidout

I’m just a regular ol’ coffee drinker, like so many of us, but lately, it’s begun to define me. From my home office at Heritage General Store to one of the first questions asked of me in a blog post for Crain’s Chicago business journal, to this: my very own roast, you might as well call me Juan Valdez.

Thanks to Kelsey, Monique, and all the folks at Bow Truss Coffee, whose roastery is just a hop, skip, and a jump away from my apartment in Chicago, I was given the unique opportunity to go through a killer tasting of all the roasts being produced at their facilities. I can tell you one thing, it’s damn good coffee. And if I were to tell you two things, don’t drink all the coffee they put in front of you during a tasting. I didn’t sleep for a week.

The Yirgacheffe I picked out is such a unique drink. It’s super sweet, like dessert in a mug. I can’t wait to pour it over a big bowl of ice cream.

Buy your own bag of the All Plaidout Roast, available now for a limited time at Bow Truss Coffee Roasters.

Visit their blog post on the subject to learn of my mother’s love of Sanka and of my Uncle Bobby, frappuccino pusher.

Southwestern Michigan

“I could buy a house here and rent in the city and remain perfectly happy, at least for the next little while.”

I’m quick to call it a movement. Though it’s not quite that, there is something happening among Chicagoans my age (31). Let’s call it “talk.” Anyone who has been to Southwestern Michigan — specifically, New Buffalo, Sawyer, and Three Oaks — has had this lightbulb moment at some point during their sojourns due North and East of our fair city.

Photos c/o Michael Kiser, Good Beer Hunting.
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Newman’s Own

“Me in this business is just part of life’s great folly. Stay loose, men, keep ‘em off balance.”

– Paul Newman

“There are three rules for running a business; fortunately we don’t know any of them.”

– A.E. Hotchner

Recently at Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Hall in New York City, several celebrities gathered for an annual benefit meant to raise money for the Hole in the Wall Gang Camps which were built to provide a camp experience to kids with terminal diseases. Started in 1988 in Ashford, Connecticut by Newman’s Own partners, the writer A.E. Hotchner and the actor Paul Newman, over the years, the camps’ benefit has seen performances from everyone from Kevin Kline to Meryl Streep, Big Bird to Baryshnikov. “What we had in mind was a kind of revue entertainment, using a few of the children along with Hollywood and Broadway stars” said Hotch in his book In Pursuit of the Common Good.

A.E. Hotchner and Paul Newman

Hearing this news, I leapt with excitement. In the past couple weeks, I re-read In Pursuit of the Common Good and Paul & Me, two books penned by fellow St. Louisan, Mr. Hotchner. Alongside his pal, Mr. Newman, the two turned a salad dressing they made as Christmas gifts into a multi-million dollar company, Newman’s Own. Rather than pocketing these funds, the founders and now successors of Newman’s Own famously give “all profits to charity.” Reading these books inspired me to write about the direct impact the charitable efforts of Newman’s Own had on my own life, and to explain how I would like to, in some way, give back, too.
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Dose Market in the News

The Dose Market ladies put together this lovely video with Middle Mind Project.

Two weekends ago, in an article written by Eater Chicago’s Ari Bendersky, they were featured in the Travel section of the New York Times.

Dose rides again this Sunday, the 25th of September. I’m excited to try on the wristwatch commissioned by Harry Truman currently for sale at Division St. Watch Company, check out the new fall wares from my favorite shop in town, Penelope’s, and eat some smoked salmon and peanut brittle… potentially at the same time.

Oh and look for Dose to get a lot more dude-friendly, particularly in the soft goods department come October 16th when a certain sporting goods store will be making its Chicago debut, and it’s my understanding they may be surrounded by some of their closest friends in the retail business.

Until then, read my previous write-up of the market, and let me know if you’re heading to Dose this weekend. I’ll be there in plaid.

Dose Market
at the River East Arts Center
435 East Illinois Street
Chicago, IL

Chicago’s Dose Market

“You bought the polka dot tie at Dose!” The MidWasteLand’s Monica Dimperio exclaimed while we waited for some Joe at Caffe Streets.

“Yes! Oh my God. What a memory!”

“You gonna be there this Sunday?”

“Of course.”
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Baja Fish Tacos

Aprons made from old pants and shirts courtesy of Chicago’s own Winter Session.

The article in question: The Paupered Chef’s Baja Fish Tacos.

Google “fish tacos.” Go ahead. Do it. Leave this page, open a new window and search The All-Mighty Google for the words fish and tacos.

Depending on your browser history, you’ll find just after a recipe from the Food Network’s Big Bad Bobby Flay, comes a recipe from some blog called The Paupered Chef.
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