Urban Brunch Series

Gilt City Chicago sure knows how to throw a great party.  The Urban Brunch Series was created in conjunction with Gilt City and Barista Prima Coffeehouse - an exclusive collection of the world’s finest Arabica coffees roasted in the tradition of Europe’s most celebrated coffee houses for the Keurig and Keurig Vue single cup brewing systems.   Superstar Chef Mindy Segal from Hot Chocolate was on hand to pair a fabulous brunch with the brews for 70 guests.  They arrived in Ubers, had photos taken with Postagram and sipped coffee and Fantinel Prosecco bubbles!  We all felt like we were on vacation with the live tunes, courtesy of the People’s Music School.  

Designed for the passionate coffee lover, Barista Prima was brewing coffee all morning long.

Everyone was going crazy for Chef Mindy’s Strawberry-Rhubarb bellinis.

Croissant Wrapped House-Made Breakfast Sausages with Maple Syrup.

Quiche is WAY cool – with English Peas, Gunthorp Farm’s Ham and Roth Kase Gruyere.

Petite Brioche French Toast, Lemon Curd, and Preserved Klug Farm Bluleberries.

Hamming it UP!

And compliments of Barista Prima – we all get our own brewers at home.  I cannot wait to brew more Barista Prima Coffeehouse coffee at home using my new brewer!

All photos courtesy of Francis Son.

The brunch kicked off the Gilt City Chicago Insider Sale.

ROCKIT Burger Bar

On watch312.com in May – we are doing two episodes on one of America’s favorite foods, the burger.  It is National Burger Month after all.  One of the stops was at the newly concepted Rockit Burger Bar, where partner Arturo Gomez and and Chef Amanda Downing helped us get our burger on with these ones, piled high creative toppings.


The MacDaddy – black angus patty with braised short rib, mac & cheese and Yukon waffle fries.

The Farmhouse – black angus patty with BBQ pulled pork, applewood smoked bacon and curly fries.

The HOTTIE – black angus patty, breaded stuffed jalapenos, pepper jack, ghost pepper aioli and fries.

Chef Amanda Downing does an impressive job with towering presentations, and each burger is paired with a unique flavored aioli.

Rockit Burger Bar.

See it here on watch312.com.

And for the record – partner Arturo Gomez said the only way to eat a burger, is to just pick it up and BITE RIGHT IN!


Bacon Wishes & Pork Belly Dreams

Baconfest was baconly. Over 50 tastes of crispy pork heaven were served during the bustling dinner portion of the event. Generous beer samples from Greenbush and PBR. Here are some highlights …


Paulina Market’s Cream of Smoked Bacon Soup served in a mini baguette.


Sweet Baby Rays Mississippi Bacon Teasers. Sweet and salty. Their Porchetta Cubano was also great.


694 Wine & Spirits. Their Kick Ass BLT. And it did just that.


Kudos to Mark Steuer from The Bedford for these Bacon Beignets with Bacon Sugar.


Trevor Hoyte from IPO always makes his tastings look great. Sous Vide Pork Belly with Popcorn Pudding, Pickled Ramps and Spicy Chicharrone.


I hate to pick a fave. But this Vanilla Bacon Bourbon Milkshake was delicious from Three Aces. My boyfriend had 3, coincidentally.




Toni Roberts from The Wit and her brilliant arena for foraging bacon truffles in a terroir of cookie crumbles.


Sixteen‘s sophisticated Milk Chocolate and Smoked Brown Sugar Tarts from the always gorgeous Sarah Kosikowski. We made room for those.


Jason Paskewitz from Gemini Bistro crisped the competition with Bacon x 3. Hand rolled porchetta ravioli with crispy pancetta chip and warm bacon vinaigrette.


And finally Black Dog Gelato’s Whiskey Bacon Pops.

On the exit we still smelled of bacon, lucky for us.



Hands down the best cake in Chicago was unanimously voted. Sweet Mandy B’s. For sweet Cece’s birthday, with a guest appearance by Olivia.


Mexico City in 24h

24 hours in Mexico City. Solea was the hotspot at W Mexico City. Especially at breakfast. But we enjoyed a snack of crispy fried Squash Blossoms.

And salivated as we passed by this street vendor in our SUV on the way to the airport. Ready to make some pork tacos.

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