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The Chicago Reader's Key Ingredient Cook-Off

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A Festival of Culinary Curiosities

May 3 | 7-10 PM | Bridgeport Art Center | $65-$100

Join Chicago's most celebrated chefs for an evening of exemplary and unusual culinary concoctions at our first annual Key Ingredient Cook-Off. Inspired by the Reader's James Beard Award-winning series, the Key Ingredient Cook-Off will see 26 chefs (from the likes of Balena, Blackbird, El Ideas, Sprout, Nellcote, Trenchermen, and more) go head-to-head using one of five ingredients—all originally chosen by chefs participating in our Key Ingredient series.

Sample the fruits of the chefs' competitive labor, decide who pulled off the most impressive feat, and enjoy libations from Chicago’s City Winery, River North Beer, Tenzing, Four Roses, and Olmeca Altos. Get in on the action early at the VIP hour, during which Scofflaw will be mixing up cocktails and serving up bites, plus enjoy first access to the event.

Watch the Reader's Key Ingredient video in which Blackbird chef de cuisine David Posey is challenged with a . . . difficult task

Video by Michael Gebert/Sky Full of Bacon

Purchase tickets here

May 3, 2013, Bridgeport Art Center, 1200 W. 35th St., 7-10 PM, VIP 6-10 PM

Near CTA: Sox/35th Street on the Red Line and 35th Street bus

VIP tickets: $100
Sold Out

- Charcuterie and bites from Panozzo's Italian Deli

- Complimentary specialty cocktails from Scofflaw's Danny Shapiro

- Entertainment from Alfonso Ponticelli of the Green Mill

- Early event access at 6:30 pm

- Three cocktail tickets for the main event

- Complimentary beer and wine

- Tasting portions from 26 of Chicago's finest chefs

General admission: $65

- Three specialty cocktails from Scofflaw

- Complimentary beer and wine

- DJ sets from Cuts on Cutz

- Tasting portions from 26 of Chicago's finest chefs

Get ready for the culinary creativity dreamed up by the following lineup of chefs—and get inspired by watching their past Key Ingredient challenge:

Paul Virant of Perennial Virant

(Watch Virant rise to the challenge of cooking with spirulina)

David Posey of Blackbird

(Watch Posey rise to the challenge of cooking with bull's testicles)

Jared Wentworth of Longman and Eagle

Phillip Foss of El Ideas

(Watch Foss rise to the challenge of cooking with saffron)

Chris Pandel of Balena and the Bristol

(Watch Pandel rise to the challenge of cooking with jujubes)

Jared Van Camp of Nellcote and Old Town Social

(Watch Van Camp rise to the challenge of cooking with red bean paste)

Carlos Gaytan of Mexique

(Watch Gaytan rise to the challenge of cooking with dried shrimp)

Sandra Holl of Cafe Floriole

(Watch Holl rise to the challenge of cooking with apricot kernels)

Paula Haney and Allison Scott of Hoosier Mama Pie

(Watch Haney and Scott rise to the challenge of cooking with millet)

Mark Steuer of Carriage House and the Bedford

(Watch Steuer rise to the challenge of cooking with bananas)

John Anderes of Telegraph Wine Bar

(Watch Anderes rise to the challenge of cooking with ash)

Barry Sorkin of Smoque

(Watch Sorkin rise to the challenge of cooking with Vienna Beef dogs)

Cleetus Friedman of Fountainhead (formerly of City Provisions)

(Watch Friedman rise to the challenge of cooking with bourbon)

Duncan Biddulph of Rootstock

(Watch Biddulph rise to the challenge of cooking with cod milt)

Marianne Sundquist of Mess Hall & Co. (formerly of In Fine Sprits)

(Watch Sundquist rise to the challenge of cooking with pork cheeks)

Rob Levitt of the Butcher and Larder

(Watch Levitt rise to the challenge of cooking with abalone)

Matt Troost of Three Aces

(Watch Troost rise to the challenge of cooking with Brazilian dende oil)

Ben Sheagren of Hopleaf

(Watch Sheagren rise to the challenge of cooking with coffee)

Ryan LaRoche of NoMi Kitchen

(Watch LaRoche rise to the challenge of cooking with celery)

Sean Sanders of Browntrout

(Watch Sanders's colleague Blair Herridge rise to the challenge of cooking with Bailey's)

Dale Levitski of Frog N Snail and Sprout

(Watch Levitski's colleague Ian Rossman rise to the challenge of cooking with cattails)

Justin White of Small Bar

(Watch White rise to the challenge of cooking with an ostrich egg)

Greg Biggers of Cafe des Architectes

(Watch Biggers rise to the challenge of cooking with beef tendon)

Evan Percoco of State and Lake Chicago Tavern

Abraham Conlon of Fat Rice

(Watch Conlon rise to the challenge of cooking with pig uterus)
healthy schools campaign

Healthy Schools Campaign: The Chicago Reader is happy to support the Healthy Schools Campaign, an independent, not-for-profit organization that advocates for policies and practices that allow all students, teachers and staff to learn and work in a healthy school environment. By facilitating collaboration between parents, teachers, administrators and policy makers, HSC helps prepare this diverse group of stakeholders to lead change at the school, district, state and national levels so schools can provide students with healthy environments, nutritious food, opportunities for physical activity and experiences that support lifelong healthy habits. To learn more, visit www.healthyschoolscampaign.org.

Karlsson's Gold - Four Roses Bourbon - No. 3 London Dry Gin - Averna - Altos - No Small Plans Productions - Scofflaw - Tenzing - City Winery Chicago - Brooklyn Brewery - Coyle & Herr - Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale - Mint Creek - River North - Speakeasy - Virtue Cider
  • Cannot be combined with any other special offer or promotion.
  • Not valid for cash back.
  • Valid only for the Chicago Reader Key Ingredient Cook-Off Event at the Bridgeport Art Center on May 3, 2013.
  • Must be 21+ to attend.
  • No refunds or exchanges will be given.
  • Please present your voucher at the door for admission.

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