The crab xiong long bao (6 steamed mini buns filled with soup broth, blue crab, and pork) at Red Violet.
Updated: January 1, 2013 6:14AM
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.
The Gage, 24 S. Michigan. Late fall sandwich offerings includes a slow-roasted seasoned pork shoulder, topped with fried kale, fried sliced jalapenos, rye-battered onion rings tossed in a sweet chili sauce and stone-ground mustard, served on a pretzel roll, $15. Call (312) 372-4243; thegagechicago.com .
Riva Crab House at Navy Pier, 700 E. Grand. Winter Wonderfest deals, available Nov. 30-Jan. 6, include a 10 percent discount on lunch and dinner food items for adults (with festival wristbands). Call (312) 644-7482; rivanavypier.com .
Brunch for two
Red Violet, 121 W. Hubbard. Dishes included on the new dim sum brunch tasting for two, available 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday-Sunday, are crab xiong long bao (6 steamed mini buns filled with soup broth, blue crab, and pork), taro fries with garlic miso dipping sauce, vegetarian buns and choice of lychee mimosa or cucumber Bloody Mary, $20. Visit redvioletchicago.com .
How sweet it is
P.F. Chang’s, participating locations. New sweets include pumpkin-cranberry cake, salted caramel chocolate cake, blueberry cheesecake, chocolate torte, tiramisu and chocolate peanut butter crunch, priced $2.95 each or three for $7.95. New drinks include a holiday sangria ($8) and spiced whiskey punch ($10). Visit pfchangs.com .
Grass Fed, 1721 N. Damen. The winter prix-fixe dinner menu is a choice of cast-iron boneless half chicken (pan-seared chicken, thyme, bay leaf, chickpeas, garlic, preserved lemon, parsley, olives and jus, $22) or Porter mussels (jalapeno, chorizo, shallots and black mustard seed in a Porter broth, $19), both served with salad and hand-cut fries. Call (773) 342-6000; grassfedbucktown.com .
Weather Mark Tavern, 1503 S. Michigan. New specials include a burger with two toppings and a domestic pint, $7 (Monday); 50-cent wings with drink purchase (Tuesday); half-price appetizers (Thursday) and all-you-can-eat fish and chips, $9.95 (Friday). Call (312) 588-0230; weathermarktavern.com .
Burger and a brew
Pizza Rustica, 3908 N. Sheridan. The burger and side ($10), available 5-10 p.m. Dec. 5 is bifteki (lamb, Greek yogurt, caramelized black olives, feta cheese) with fried feta cheese sticks. Suggested beer pairing is Stiegl Pils, German Pilsner ($5.50). Call (773) 404-8955; pizza-rustica.com .
Drink of the week
Embeya, 564 W. Randolph. Beverage director Danielle Pizzutillo’s holiday drinks include coconut eggnog (spiced rum, egg yolk, coconut milk topped with toasted coconut shavings), $12. Call (312) 612-5640; embeya.com .
Deal of the week
Quince, 1625 Hinman, Evanston. Chef Andy Motto’s six-course, sixth anniversary prix-fixe dinner, available 5:30-9:30 p.m. Dec. 4-6, includes a Guinea hen and sweet potato course, $60. Call (847) 570-8419; quincerestaurant.net .