Restaurateur Amy Morton recently opened her latest Evanston dining space, The Barn, housed in a former 19th-century brick farmhouse. The “meatcentric hideaway” is a far cry from her veggie hot spot Found, and is an homage to her family lineage (her dad founded the Morton Steakhouse chain). In addition to hearty plates sourced by local farms, Beverage Director Michelle Sallemi whips up a classic cocktail menu with a number of twists, as seen in this spicy tequila drink.
Alpana Singh knew she wanted to be in the restaurant business since she was a little girl. Growing up in Monterey, California, her father was a professional chef, and her mother, a server. “Truth be told, I don’t know how to do anything else. It’s in my blood,” she says. At the age of 15, she was working in her first restaurant; by 23, she had remarkably landed a sommelier position at Chicago’s four-star gem Everest; and by 26, she became the youngest female to ever pass the Master Sommelier Exam.
It’s a kegger at Wicker Park’s new gastropub Barley & Brass—and that means no waiting for your cocktail. Drinks like the refreshing Bitter Fizz are premade and served from a keg that keeps them fresh. It’s the vision of Mixologist Jan Henrichsen, who joins B&B after stints at Fat Rice and Evanston’s Found Kitchen + Social House. Of this citrus specialty, she says, “If this drink was a band, every note would be in perfect harmony.” Of course you can make it to order, too.
Get ready for a duel—this drink is meant to be reminiscent of walking into a saloon in the mid 1800s. “The flavors are very classic. The charred wood of the bourbon and the stone fruit of the apricot are deep and rich,” says Robert LaPata, co-owner of Evanston’s newest hot spot. The recipe is even further significant, reflecting on the history of the original Ten Mile House, the town’s “first gathering point,” which opened in 1836.