Proving not everyone who comes into the city from the 'burbs ends up aimlessly shuffling down Michigan Ave clutching American Girl shopping bags for themselves because, let's face it, they're going to be collector's items their ugly kids, the folks behind Hinsdale's Zak's Place, now opening Two. The farm- and butchery-focused boite in the former Black Sheep is putting out the vibe via reclaimed barnwood walls adorned with a huge red barn door and a bar backed with a wall of old cleavers (Jerry Mathers has NOT aged well). Kick things off with a charcuterie plate that includes housemade jerky & pickles, or some Berkshire pork cheek crostini with house ricotta, or, if you must go meatless, at least go fried with some Yukon gold croquettes w/ sun-dried tomato aioli and Wisconsin parm. From there, it gets serious with lamb T-bones accompanied by lamb bacon, beef short ribs over Anson Mills cheddar grits, and duck egg pasta sporting duck confit and duck cracklings, which is pretty duckin' ducked up. A fifth of their 100 wines will be avail by the glass (plus six on tap), and their 10 Midwest craft brews on tap will change frequently, but if you're all "I ONLY DRINK COCKTAILS!!!", reach for a habanero-infused Mezcal Daisy, but not too many, or you'll be the one aimlessly shuffling down large avenues.
Timothy DeLaGhetto and David So Hit Up the Taste of Little Italy Food Festival