Love and Food in the Big D

Sunday, November 13, 2011

The Great Chicago Binge of 2011 (Day 2) - Dinner at The Publican, Avec and Girl & The Goat

As we began our trek to our FIRST dinner of the night...our poor, tired and aching feet FOOLED us into thinking that perhaps we had walked enough throughout the day to work off our dinner BEFORE we had even made it to the restaurant.  Little did we realize that as the night wore down and we finally made it to our last stop of the evening, NO AMOUNT of walking could've ever worked off ALL. THIS. FOOD.  No amount at all.  Good news is, we had consumed enough calories to sustain us if the world happened to come crumbling around us and we had to survive for months on our stomach eating itself from the inside out.  OH yeah... we ate THAT much.   Albeit yummy.. our inability to actually STOP took us to the edge...

First Stop:  The Publican
(Taken from their website) - Executive Chef Paul Kahan and Chef de Cuisine Brian Huston crafted an eclectic menu inspired by simple farmhouse fare in a space evocative of a European beer hall. Featuring pork and fish/seafood preparations, the menu is best described by Kahan and Huston as “pristine product, simply prepared,” an approach to food Kahan has long espoused in all of his kitchens.

A round of beers to start us out..

Kusshi Oysters

Beets - Ricotta, Parmesan, Red Onion and Lemon

Walleye "fish fry" - Castelvetrano Olives, Cucumbers, Radishes and Parmesan Aioli

Lamb Neck Sugo with herb pappardelle and pickled squash

Pork Belly - Watermelon Radishes, Delicata Squash

Bread Pudding - Toasted Coconut, Almonds and Coconut Ice Cream

Next Stop:  Avec  (Same Chef as The Publican and Blackbird nearby)
Thankfully this little pit stop was just for a taste of some appetizers and maybe a drink to waste away the time before our next stop at Girl and The Goat.  ;) 

View from our seat at the bar..

Chorizo-stuffed medjool dates with smoked bacon and piquillo pepper-tomato sauce

Spaghetti squash crostini with parmesan saffron cream and watercress

Last Stop:  Girl & The Goat
If you've ever watched Top Chef on Bravo, you'll surely recognize Chef Stephanie Izard, winner of Top Chef, Season Four. 

(Taken from Wikipedia) Stephanie Izard's restaurant Girl and The Goat, has received local and national press, including four out of five stars from Time Out Chicago and three out of four from Chicago Tribune. It was also the subject of Saveur magazine’s first-ever restaurant review, which dubbed Girl and the Goat “America’s Best New Restaurant.” Girl and the Goat was also nominated for the 2011 James Beard Best New Restaurant Award, right around the time Stephanie was named one of Food and Wine magazine’s Best New Chefs.

Oh yeah.. it absolutely says, "Oven Roasted Pig Face".. and Oh YES, we ordered it.  Are you surprised?  ;) 
Chad was sold just on the name.. I, on the other hand...was more curious than anything else. 

Oh yeah and we also ordered the Pan Fried Duck Tongues with Shitake Mushrooms, Pickled Watermelon Rind, Chili Oil and Coriander 
I actually can't believe I WILLING ate these things.. and GASP, it was actually REALLY GOOD?!?!?!...Who knew I'd ever be so adventurous!?!

Seared Nantucket Bay Scallops, squash, bok choy, goat xo sauce and pizza poofs.. yup, that's what the menu said.. PIZZA POOFS!

Sauteed green beans, fish sauce vinaigrette and cashews
So simple, yet soooooo yummy!  :)

And last but certainly not least...
Wood oven roasted pig face - sunny side egg, tamarind, cilantro and potato stix
Actually tasted like breakfast sausage, egg and crispy hashbrowns.. except BETTER...and luckily it didn't LOOK like a pig's face, at all!  :) 

So long little guy... you were a tasty little fellow.. ;) 

Time to WALK...or CRAWL rather, back to our hotel.. Wheel barrow anyone?  Anyone??  Please... anyone??  ;)  B.L.O.A.T.E.D!! 

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