—We begin this hump day with sad news for lovers of carnitas and for the owners and employees of one fine restaurant in Pilsen. Carnitas La Michoacana, a popular 29-year-old Mexican eatery at 2049 W. Cermak Rd., was destroyed in a fire on Tuesday. Two people suffered smoke-related injuries, the Sun-Times reported first, and although the restaurant sadly appears done, ownership vows to rebuild.
—In happier Mexican food news: Cruz Blanca—it's not just for tacos (and beer) anymore. Rick Bayless' Randolph Row brewpub now serves tlayudas, massive "hubcap-sized" tostada-esque Oaxacan specialties, the Tribune reports. A basic beans, cheese and salsa version runs $10.95, while you can add mushrooms for $2 and various meats for $3. Photo below.
—Roscoe Village eaters get a new, but tried-and-true, brunch option this weekend when the new third Bangers & Lace starts serving the weekend daytime meal on Saturday at 1851 W. Addison St. Dishes include a duck BLT and shakshouka, while the biggest draw may be its strong booze menu that focuses on "brunch beers." Full menu below.
—Suburban Cook County, the areas immediately outside the city limits, is expected to pass the minimum wage hike that was previously passed in the city in Dec. 2014, the Tribune reports. Many restaurant workers' minimum wage in the area would rise, eventually hitting $13 an hour by 2020.
—FYI: Apparently there are exceptions to some bars' own rules to have no TVs or not show sports—when the Cubs are in the World Series. Multiple said bars are breaking their own rules, Crain's reports, including Sportsman's Club, Pub Royale, Tiny Lounge, and Kinslahger Brewing in Oak Park, which posted a fun photo on Facebook to mark the occasion. Your local non-TV bar may actually be showing the series, too.
—And speaking of the Cubs, some Wrigleyville bars are capitalizing on the North Side baseball team's first World Series appearance in 71 years by charging exorbitant cover charges for the games. John Barleycorn is asking $250 (!) for a package that includes drinks, an app and an entree during the game, while The Cubby Bear is charging $100 just to enter, Sports Illustrated reports. There's even a Reddit thread on the subject.
—Finally, celebrity chef Marcus Samuelsson will join Paul Kahan at Publican Quality Meats on Oct. 30 for a cookbook event for The Red Rooster Cookbook: The Story of Food and Hustle in Harlem. Dishes from the book, including Samuelsson's signature fried yardbird, as well as champagne, beer and wine will be served. Plus, live music will be played and Samuelsson will sign books on request. $65 tickets are available here.