CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: Celebrating Fashion’s Night Out at the 900 Shops with Val Warner, Julius Peppers, Ali Larter, and Izzy Idonije. Hamming it up with Justine Fedak at the Joffrey Ballet’s Couture and Cocktails, hosted by McGrath Acura. With Nanette Lepore at her Bucktown boutique. At Public’s one-year anniversary party with wine aficionado Andy Li of TR Napa Valley.
Although it’s always been my favorite holiday, Thanksgiving is kind of an anomaly. The premise: Unglue your entire family from their frenzied schedule of appointments and daily headaches (it’s a wonder we haven’t started Skyping in) and corral them around a table for more than 20 minutes. Despite the odds, the ritual persists. We all have fun, overeat, watch football and, sometimes, shop.
I view Michigan Avenue as the result of a similar suspension of disbelief: We launched nearly five years ago in an anemic marketplace, when all indicators suggested running and ducking for cover. It was a bold move, yet we continue to grow with each issue, inspiring our readers.
Of course, this trajectory could not have been realized without our many readers, friends, and advertisers, whose dedication has allowed us to set Chicago abuzz with content and memorable events. Case in point: the Tortoise Club, with whom we’ve partnered to host their preview celebration this month. Piloted by restaurateur Keene Addington, the Tortoise Club offers bold fare like pheasant pie courtesy of Executive Chef (and Spaggia alum) Gray McNally. A live band Wednesday through Sunday makes the club a surefire can’t-miss.
Also on my Chicago-food-circuit radar is TR2, the latest effort from restaurant whiz Andy Li. If the name sounds recognizable, it’s because Li helms Highland Park staple Jade China Bistro and the trendy Oak Street go-to TR Napa Valley. After taking the neighborhood by storm, Li brings his experiential wine cave to Highland Park—quickly expanding in a merciless industry. Another anomaly, isn’t it? Nevertheless, something to celebrate and be thankful for.
PHOTOGRAPHY BY STEVE STARR (LARTER, FEDAK); JEFF SCHEAR (LEPORE, LI)
Michigan Avenue toasted December/January cover star William H. Macy with a 150-guest gathering at Hubbard Inn on December 9, 2014.