—Below-zero wind chills and near-constant snowfall mean many things to the Chicago restaurant industry: including that Chicago Restaurant Week is coming soon. The annual promotion to boost the industry in the slow wintertime is a little more than a month away, as from Jan. 27 until Feb. 9 more than 350 restaurants will offer prix-fixe lunch, brunch and/or dinner menus for $22, $33, or $44 — and they’re already taking reservations. Click here for the full list, which includes new hotspots such as El Che Bar and Beacon Tavern, and start making your plans. And as previously reported, Sarah Grueneberg of Monteverde is hosting the annual kickoff party, First Bites Bash, on Jan. 26 at Navy Pier.
—Following word leaking out that Goose Island is opening brewpubs in Toronto and London, it turns out that the Chicago beer icon’s international expansion plans are much grander. Expect locations in China, Brazil, Korea, Mexico, and Philadelphia too, the Tribune reports. The London location, named Vintage Ale House, opened over the weekend.
—Lulu’s, the longtime Evanston favorite Asian restaurant, finally resurfaced in a new location last week at 1026 Davis St. — but only for lunch service. But dinner service is scheduled to begin tonight.
—Here’s a boozy reason to brave the cold on Monday and Tuesday: a Maker’s Mark truck is roaming the city serving hot cider, baked goods, and more. Today, you can catch it at Millennium Park between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. and at Joy District between 5 and 8 p.m., while it’ll be at the Merchandise Mart tomorrow from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. and Garfield’s (1704 N. Milwaukee Ave.) between 5 and 9 p.m.
—And finally, for those last-minute holiday shoppers, Fooditor editor Michael Gebert has written and released a Chicago dining guidebook named “The Fooditor 99: Where To Eat (And What To Eat There) In Chicago.” You can snag a copy on Amazon for just $5.99 ($1.99 on Kindle).