Tribune and Reader: Brunch, Late Nights, Chef Check-in
• No big review from Vettel this week. Instead, we get a thoughtful exposition on the evolution of the modern Sunday Brunch. Remember those highfalutin buffet scenarios with carving stations and jello salads? They still exist, for things like Mother's Day and Easter, but for the most part the weekly brunch has become its own animal, and with its rise so wanes the era of the chafing dish. Weep for the fallen omelet station.
• Joe O'Donnell rattles off his picks for super-late night eats, bypassing the expected Arturo's in favor of its taco competitor, Lazo's. Shout outs also to Pie Hole Pizza and others, including the aptly named Pick Me Up Cafe.
• Over at the Reader, Mike Sula and Anne Spiselman play an interesting game. First, Sula checks in on what chef Martial Noguier's up to in his new gig at Cafe des Architectes, and then he swings by Noguier's old stomping grounds, One Sixtyblue, to see what the kitchen's like under the rule of his replacement, Michael McDonald. Sula finds that a number of One Sixtyblue's dishes went to Cafe des Architectes along with Noguier, like the steak with shallot marmalade, which unfortunately comes up short. New preparations are good, but hardly transcendant.
Meanwhile at One Sixtyblue, Spiselman has a similarly temperate experience, though Chef McDonald does play to the American (as opposed to Noguier's French) side of the room. Seems like a lot of stuff on the plates don't live up to their promise — horseradish is "mild," marrow is "barely there." Service at both restaurants is lacking. Can we just blame a general period of transition, or is this a sealed deal?