Last night, a Who’s Who of Chicago’s dining scene celebrated the Chicago Tribune’s first Dining Awards at the Ignite Your Senses party. Food was the reason for the event, and none of it would be possible without the chefs in the kitchen.
The awards were split into two categories based on how the winners were determined: Readers’ Choice Awards and Critic’s Choice Awards. Readers voted on nominees in 14 categories, with the winners coming down to margins as slim as a single vote. There were 13 honorees in the Critic’s Choice Awards.
Nominees and winners brought their A-game to the table with bites of the highlighted dishes and drinks. EL Ideas served flash-made liquid nitrogen ice cream emitting plumes of steam. Guests clamored for duck carnitas from Cindy’s Rooftop.
— Andrea Hanis (@AndreaHanis) May 18, 2017
The evening included a special VIP toast to Jean Joho, chef at Everest, who received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Tribune. As Phil Vettel wrote: “Jean Joho has been running the kitchen at Everest for 30 years, which, not coincidentally, is how long this Loop restaurant has existed. … A 65-year-old chef who never stops looking for ways to improve, Joho talks as though he's ready for another 30 years. Which is just fine with us.”
The event was a celebration, however, and attendees made the most of it. Duck Duck Goat’s Stephanie Izard was thrilled about her Readers’ Choice win for Best New Restaurant.