The Art of Food in Chicago

Our Great American Road Trip had ended, and we said our goodbyes to our beloved Route 66 Crew in San Francisco. But for Calvin and I, we still had a ways to go.

We were scheduled to speak at a conference in Madison, Wisconsin the next day. So after spending the last week driving 2,000 miles from Chicago to San Francisco, we dropped off our RV’s and sped out of the rental lot to catch a flight with a layover in.. you guessed it, Chicago. Lucky for us, Calvin’s inner fat kid sensibility had the foresight to make dinner reservations during our 6 hour layover months before. That’s right, I said months. If the thought of waiting on a ticket queue (that seems longer than a line to a free Jay Z concert in Brooklyn) puts a sour taste in your mouth, than Alinea’s 16-course pre-fixe experience seems to rectify the bougie admission process.

We started our marathon 16-course dinner with a game of hide-and-seek: a piece of dehydrated root jerky hidden in a nest.

True to backpacking form, we rolled into Alinea- one of the world’s top restaurants- with our bags still covered in dust from Route 66. We started our marathon meal with a game of hide-and-seek: a piece of dehydrated root jerky hidden in a nest of branches.

Pieces of black truffle shaped into slabs of "concrete."

Pieces of black truffle shaped into slabs of “concrete.”

Hamachi, shishito peppers, beans and pine branch getting cooked inside a log.

Hamachi, shishito peppers, beans, and pine branches getting roasted inside of a fiery log pile.

Quince, almond, grapefruit and oxalis made for a nice break in between.

Quince, almond, grapefruit and oxalis made for a nice flavor break in between.

A forage of rabbit ,morel, ramp and mastic.

A forage of rabbit plated on top of a forest of morel, ramp, and mastic.

Green apple-flavored taffy balloons.

Green apple-flavored taffy balloons. Yes, they were awesome.

And finally, the grand finale: a tropical fruit-and-rum masterpiece painted by the sous chef.

 

Leave a Reply