—The Tribune staff released its annual Dining Awards, honoring The Blanchard (best new restaurant), The Duck Inn's Kevin Hickey (chef of the year) and Brandon Phillips (bartender of the year) and Meg Galus of Boka and Swift & Sons (pastry chef of the year). Other winners include Ampersand Wine Bar, Luella's Southern Kitchen, and Monteverde.
—The Sun-Times reports that Midway Airport's restaurant lineup could get a major upgrade from a group of political insiders. The story says, through anonymous sources, that Piccolo Sogno, Rockit Bar & Grill, Frontera Grill, Billy Goat Tavern, and Schaller's Pump are among the restaurants that could land at the South Side airport. Stay tuned.
—The Aviary beverage director Micah Melton was named one of the country's "Rising Stars" by industry magazine FSR. The list honors "40 professionals under the age of 40 who who are helping to define new expectations for dining experiences across all spectra of restaurant environments."
—Candlelite, a 66-year-old bar and restaurant in West Ridge, is now serving Detroit-style pan pizza in addition to its usual cracker-thin crust pies, DNAinfo reports. Is this the next pizza style to flood Chicago?
—Eataly is launching a month-long Tuscan popup on Friday. Open weekends through April 3, "Ristorante Toscano" is meant to evoke the Tuscan countryside and will serve Tuscan dishes and wine, including a $50 four-course option.