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The Big Deals 04.27.12

Mr. Wabbit (Elmer T. Lee bourbKoval walnut liqueur Punt e Mes Bittercube cherry bark vanillbitters) Smallbar.

Mr. Wabbit (Elmer T. Lee bourbon, Koval walnut liqueur, Punt e Mes, Bittercube cherry bark vanilla bitters) at Smallbar.

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Updated: May 28, 2012 8:38AM



From upscale to low-cal, the Sun-Times’ “Big Deals” column brings readers the dish on food and drink specials that will not break the bank.

Bar bites

Rockit Bar & Grill, 22 W. Hubbard. New menu items include Scotch eggs (boiled eggs wrapped in pork sausage and bread crumbs, pickled gherkins with whole grain mustard, $9; and the “TV Dinner” (applewood smoked ham, pineapple ring, grilled asparagus, country-style red mashed potatoes, four-cheese macaroni, corn on the cob, apple slaw and chef’s choice dessert), $22. Call (312) 645-6000; rockitbarandgrill.com.

Cheers to spring

Smallbar, Division and Fullerton locations. Mixologist Craig Hiljus’ new spring hand-crafted cocktail menu, made with ingredients from small distilleries, includes “Mr. Wabbit” (Elmer T. Lee bourbon, Koval walnut liqueur, Punt e Mes, Bittercube cherry bark vanilla bitters, $11) and “Toes in the Sand” (Ron Zacapa rum, Sandeman ruby porto, fresh orange, demerara syrup, Bittercube Jamaican No. 2 bitters, $10). Visit thesmallbar.com.

French connection

Brasserie By LM, in the Essex Inn, 800 S. Michigan. Chef Brad Phillips’ traditional French fare includes onion soup gratinee, $6; roast chicken with Boulanger potatoes, spinach and jus, $17; and mussels and frites in white wine, garlic and herbs, $13. Call (312) 431-1788; brasseriebylm.com.

Signature touch

RJ Grunts, 2056 N. Lincoln Park West. It’s National Burger Month, and starting May 1 the restaurant launches a new weekly burger. Up first is the “GBQ” (with smoked brisket in QBC barbecue sauce from Chef Gary Baca of Joe’s Stone Crab. The Paris Club’s chef Tim Graham of follows with the “Paris” (topped with thick cut bacon, gribiche sauce, frisee and fried egg). It’s off to Italy with executive chef/partner David Degregorio’s (of Osteria via Stato) “Tuscan” version (applewood smoked peppered bacon, Salemville gorgonzola cheese, poached pear slices and baby arugula). The month closes out with home chef/partner Terry Lynch’s “El Segundo Sol” (chipotle mayo, jalapeno peppers, pickled onions, cotija and Jack cheeses). The burgers are $13.95 each and served with the restaurant’s signature cottage fries. Call (773) 929-5363; rjgruntschicago.com.

Spring duet

Sullivan’s Steakhouse, participating locations. The “Steak & Cake” deal (eight-ounce filet mignon and four-ounce crabcake duet with blue cheese iceberg wedge or Caesar salad, $39) vanishes April 30. Visit sullivansteakhouse.com.

Drink of the week

Barrelhouse Flat, 2624 N. Lincoln. Nothing says spring like a bloomin’ “Dandy Lion” (gin, muddled cucumber, absinthe and lemon juice), $11. Call (773) 857-0421; barrelhouseflat.com.

Deal of the week

Shiraz on the Water, 250 W. Schick, Bloomingdale. Chef Carol Bukantz’s National Prime Rib Day special, available 5 to 10 p.m. April 27, is soup or salad starter with a choice of (9-, 12-, or 16-oz) cut of prime rib served with choice of rice pilaf, garlic-chive mashed potatoes or fries, vegetable and dessert, $21-$28. Call (630) 671-5013; shirazon thewater.com.



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