Some short bits of news that piled up over the weekend:
• Top Cheftestants Dale Levitski and Grayson Schmitz will pitch in for local bartenders (who will all be off at New Orleans' Tales of the Cocktail this coming weekend) at a weekend-long event at the Radisson Blu in the Aqua building called Hotel Thrillist. [312DD]
• Ray Lampe, aka Dr. BBQ, a Chicago native who is now an author and BBQ judge based in Florida, won the first episode (of five) of Chopped: Grill Masters, hosted by ex-Chicagoan Ted Allen.
• Unfortunately they didn't send us any information, but we've seen it elsewhere and it's a good cause so we'll run something anyway. Ashley Pruneau, a line cook for MANA Food Bar, was brutally attacked in her apartment and requires surgery for head injuries. Her previous employer, Letizia's Fiore, will have a fundraising event on July 31 at 7 p.m., with pizza, beer and wine; the $15 admission will all go to her benefit fund (the restaurant asks that you pay by check, made out to Ashley Pruneau). [312DD]
• Chutney's Joe's, an "Indian diner" near Roosevelt University and all that stuff on south State, has closed. Owner Vijay Puniani is apparently focusing on another concept, Fresh 3, in northwest Indiana. [Sloopin]