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A Four-Course Midwestern Filipino Dinner and Nine More New Pop-Ups

A log of the city’s best bar and restaurant pop-ups and events

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A bowl of yak-a-mein on a black tray.
A Chicago pit master brings New Orleans-born yak-a-mein to Lincoln Park.

Chicagoans are an optimistic crowd at heart, and that unflagging confidence that summer will eventually return is finally paying off. That energy and enthusiasm carry over to the city’s bars and restaurants, where hospitality experts are organizing plenty of pop-ups and events to celebrate — with food and drink, of course. Follow along for a sampling of the best the city has to offer in this week’s Eater Chicago pop-up round-up.

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West Town: Pizza City Fest returns to Chicago with a celebration of “pizza diversity” with so-called festival-sized slices from well-regarded spots including Bungalow by Middlebrow, George’s Deep Dish, and Professor Pizza. Last year’s fest went through some turbulence thanks to stormy weather and not enough pizza on the first day. Food Guy Steve Dolinsky, now on NBC 5 (formerly ABC 7’s Hungry Hound) tweaked operations and is running it back at a larger venue. The fest returns for a second year from Saturday, August 26 to Sunday, August 27 at the new Salt Shed. Dolinsky has also brought the event to LA. Patrons can also expect beer, wine, cocktails, and booze-free beverages, as well as speakers, demonstrations, pizza-themed merch, and more. Ticket prices for adults range from $95 to $350 and are available online. Pizza City Fest at the Salt Shed, Saturday, August 26 to Sunday, August 27, 1357 N. Elston Avenue.


Avondale: The latest edition of Monday Night Foodball, the Chicago Reader’s pop-up series, will feature Billy Zureikat, the local chef who’s spent the last few years raising money for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. “Tripping Billy” calls it his greatest hits menu with fun sandwiches such as the D-Rose, a tribute to the Chicago Bulls and New York Knicks star — a chopped cheese sandwich with giardiniera and more. Preorders start at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, June 14 via Zureikat’s Instagram page. Walk-in orders will also be available on the day of the event. Tripping Billy’s Greatest Hits at Monday Night Foodball, Monday, June 19 at Ludlow Liquors, 2959 N. California Avenue.

Lincoln Park: Lettuce Entertain You ramen mini-chain Ramen-san continues its collaborative dinner series in June with chef D’Andre Carter of barbecue hit Soul & Smoke with a special yak-a-mein — a New Orleans-born meaty noodle soup that blends Creole and Chinese flavors — featuring smoked brisket, braised collard greens, and marinated egg atop wavy noodles. The dish is available Thursday, June 15 through Wednesday, June 28. The partnership will culminate with a coursed dinner on Tuesday, June 27 at Ramen-san Lincoln Park. Tickets ($65) and more details are available via OpenTable. Soul & Smoke x Ramen-san Lincoln Park, seatings at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. Tuesday, June 27, 1962 N. Halsted Street.

Beverly: Neighborhood coffeehouse Afro Joe’s Coffee & Tea will host a Bourbon, Beers & Cigars pop-up with DJs, charcuterie boards, and commemorative glasses on Saturday, June 24 at 1818 W. 99th Street. Tickets ($75) and more details are available online. Bourbon, Beers & Cigars at Afro Joe’s Coffee & Tea, 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, June 24, 1818 W. 99th Street.

West Town: Ambitious virtual restaurant Laos to Your House will pop up on Saturday, June 24 for a family- and dog-friendly gathering at Midwest Coast Brewing, according to an Instagram post. Menu items include Nam Khao, a crispy rice salad with pork, coconut, red curry, and fish sauce; and deep-fried ginger lemongrass chicken wings. Laos to Your House at Midwest Coast Brewing, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, June 24, 2137 W. Walnut Street.

West Town: Everything’s coming up Publican at One Off Hospitality’s “SUPER Delicious, SUPER Fun, SUPER Italian Deli Pop-Up” featuring James Beard Award-winning baker Greg Wade of Publican Quality Bread and chef Rob Levitt of Publican Quality Meats, according to a rep. The duo will offer made-to-order sandwiches like Umbrian Salami (garlic, white wine, rosemary, sage) and the Veggie (asparagus, snap peas, radish, pesto) and more on Saturday, June 24 on the patio at Publican Quality Bread. RSVP online via Tock. PQB x PQM, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, June 24, 1759 W. Grand Avenue.

Bucktown: Summertime favorite Miko’s Italian Ice will return to its former stomping grounds for a pop-up stint that kicks off on Thursday, June 22 at George’s Hot Dogs and is expected to run through the summer, according to Block Club. The team will start with a limited flavor lineup but plans to amp up the offerings over time. Miko’s originally launched in 1997 down the street from George’s in Bucktown where it operated until 2019 when second-generation owner Zach Roombos sold the building. The Italian ice haven remains open in Irving Park and Logan Square. Miko’s Italian Ice x George’s Hot Dogs, Thursday, June 22, 1876 N. Damen Avenue.

Logan Square: Fresh off a red-hot reopening in spacious new digs, Midwestern-focused restaurant Daisies will host chef Carlo Lamagna of lauded Filipino restaurant Magna Kusina in Portland, Oregon, for a four-course collaborative pop-up dinner on Tuesday, June 20. Attendees can expect dishes from Lamagna as well as Daisies chefs Joe Frillman, Thomas Leonard, and Leigh Omilinsky that “highlight Filipino cuisine through a Midwestern lens.” Reservations ($85) are available via Tock. Carlo Lamagna x Daisies Dinner, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday, June 20, 2375 N. Milwaukee Avenue.

Bocadillo Market

Lincoln Park: Chicago sommelier Derrick Westbrook (Juice @ 1340) will join chef James Martin for a free wine-tasting event on Wednesday, June 14 at essential sandwich spot Bocadillo Market. Organizers also promise music, Spanish bar snacks, and a full wine and cocktail menu. Martin says he wants to showcase his cafe’s wine program every Wednesday with special pairings. Food includes fried squash blossoms stuffed with Sobrassada goat cheese. A Summer Wine Affair at Bocadillo Market, 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday, June 14, 2342 N. Clark Street.

Logan Square: Topping the wild absurdity of Tina Fey’s 2004 cultural touchstone Mean Girls is a tall order, but the team at the Pink Squirrel is up to the task. The cocktail bar has unveiled parody pop-up Mean Squirrels, a floor-to-ceiling tribute (with a twist) to the early aughts with themed cocktails like Regulation Hottie (an espresso martini with a pink sugar lip print) and She Doesn’t Even Go Here, which is served in a unicorn-shaped glass and topped with pink cotton candy. Slated to run through the end of August, it also features “anti-friendship bracelet” kits, a “Squirrel Slam Book” photo booth, and a free shot on Wednesdays for patrons who wear pink. Reservations and more details are available via Tock. Mean Squirrels at the Pink Squirrel, runs through August 2023, 2414 N. Milwaukee Avenue.

Logan Square: Hopewell Brewing Co. will collaborate with Bang Bang Pie and indie bookstore City Lit on Saturday, June 10 for Litty Litty Bang Bang, a book fair pop-up featuring a curated selection of books and a nostalgic menu filled with literary references, according to a rep. The pop-up is first-come, first-served, and there’s no entry fee. Litty Litty Bang Bang with City Lit, Bang Bang Pie & Biscuits, and Hopewell Brewing Co., 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, June 10, 2760 N. Milwaukee Avenue.

Wrigleyville: Swift & Sons Tavern will offer an alternative to crowded concerts this summer with a Listening Party series across from Wrigley Field, according to a rep, with plans for Dead & Company on Friday, June 9; Fall Out Boy on Wednesday, June 21, and Morgan Wallen on Thursday, June 22. Tickets ($60) are available via Tock and include three drinks, food stations, and a cash bar. Summer Listening Parties at Swift & Sons Tavern, Friday, June 9; Wednesday, June 24; and Thursday, June 22, 3600 N. Clark Street.

Humboldt Park: The Howdy Y’all Disco Ball, a country disco fundraising gala for virtual comfort food hit Funeral Potatoes, will kick off Saturday, June 3 at the See You Soon event space in the Kimball Arts Center, according to co-founders and executive chefs Eve Studnicka and Alexis Thomas-Rice. The pair have operated Funeral Potatoes out of a ghost kitchen for three years and have an ongoing campaign to raise enough money for a permanent location. The evening will feature drag performances, signature drinks, retro appetizers, a GlitterGuts photo booth, a silent auction, and more. Tickets ($85) are available online. The Howdy Y’all Disco Ball by Funeral Potatoes at See You Soon, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, June 3, 1757 N. Kimball Avenue.

Oak Brook/Schaumburg: Japanese rotary sushi chain Kura Sushi will kick off a two-month pop-up on Thursday, June 1 in collaboration with Cartoon Network’s hit animated series We Bare Bears at suburban locations in Oak Brook and Schaumburg, according to a rep. Through Monday, July 31, patrons who accumulate 15 sushi plates will receive a We Bare Bears x Kura Sushi Bikkura Pon collectible like a keychain or bubble sticker set. More details are available online. We Bare Bears x Kura Sushi, Thursday, June 1 through Monday, July 31, 1755 22nd Street in Oak Brook and 1719 E. Golf Road in Schaumburg.

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