D'oh! We zipped right past this one in our inbox when it would clearly have been the lead item for our St. Patrick's Day roundup. What do Ireland and Italy have in common? That Theo Gilbert of Ripasso meant to open an Italian restaurant in Ireland when he lived there some years back, but wound up in Chicago instead. So this year, for St. Patrick's Day, he's doing an Irish pop-up for six whole weeks in his Wicker Park restaurant, called The Red-Headed Stepchild. Next Tuesday, he'll redecorate in Irish garb, and offer an Irish half of the menu alongside Ripasso's Italian fare, with dishes like corned beef sliders, shepherd's pie with Guinness-braised shortribs, craibheachain (a kind of crab salad), and a bangers, ham and potato stew called Dublin Coddle. But the biggest excitement might be a Charity Chef Battle, date to be set, between Gilbert and Michael Carlson of Schwa. The pop-up will last through the second week of April; Ripasso/The Red-Headed Stepchild is open at noon for lunch Thursday through Sunday, and at 5 p.m. for dinner seven nights a week.
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