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Evenston Lunch Tuesday October 9, 12:30 Claire's Korner

Evenston Lunch Tuesday October 9, 12:30 Claire's Korner
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  • Evenston Lunch Tuesday October 9, 12:30 Claire's Korner

    Post #1 - September 18th, 2007, 5:33 pm
    Post #1 - September 18th, 2007, 5:33 pm Post #1 - September 18th, 2007, 5:33 pm
    The next Evanston lunch is scheduled for October 9 at 12:30 at Claire's Korner, a Jamaican restaurant at 1827 Emerson (near Dodge), known for its jerk chicken. I have not been in the restaurant, although have often driven by, so I can't speak from experience, but I plan to visit to find out how many customers they can serve at lunch.

    No need to respond now. In about ten days, I will bump the thread up to the top as our schedules become set.
  • Post #2 - September 20th, 2007, 8:06 pm
    Post #2 - September 20th, 2007, 8:06 pm Post #2 - September 20th, 2007, 8:06 pm
    I stopped by Claire's Korner this afternoon to learn that they have two tables - seating a total of eight. They will set aside the tables for us, but this might be a bit tight. However, most times (Patty's being the exception that proves the rule), we have between 5-8 diners.
  • Post #3 - September 20th, 2007, 11:00 pm
    Post #3 - September 20th, 2007, 11:00 pm Post #3 - September 20th, 2007, 11:00 pm
    I'll be there. Did you try the jerk chicken, and if so, what did you think?
  • Post #4 - September 20th, 2007, 11:23 pm
    Post #4 - September 20th, 2007, 11:23 pm Post #4 - September 20th, 2007, 11:23 pm
    As long as there's room, I'd love to be a part of this, too.

    =R=
    Gardening is a bloodsport --Meghan Kleeman

    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #5 - September 21st, 2007, 8:14 am
    Post #5 - September 21st, 2007, 8:14 am Post #5 - September 21st, 2007, 8:14 am
    I'm in - and worst-case, if there isn't room and the weather continues to hold up, we could picnic in the Arboretum just around the corner.
  • Post #6 - September 21st, 2007, 11:19 am
    Post #6 - September 21st, 2007, 11:19 am Post #6 - September 21st, 2007, 11:19 am
    Mhays wrote:I'm in - and worst-case, if there isn't room and the weather continues to hold up, we could picnic in the Arboretum just around the corner.


    I'd like to attend also--if there's room.... and picnicking is fine with me too.

    Speaking of which, Mhays, are you still considering the idea of trying to plan a mini-LTH Evanston picnic as we were discussing over lunch at Patty's on Tuesday?
  • Post #7 - September 21st, 2007, 11:38 am
    Post #7 - September 21st, 2007, 11:38 am Post #7 - September 21st, 2007, 11:38 am
    Count us in -- Robert and Catherine.
  • Post #8 - September 21st, 2007, 12:05 pm
    Post #8 - September 21st, 2007, 12:05 pm Post #8 - September 21st, 2007, 12:05 pm
    in
  • Post #9 - September 21st, 2007, 12:37 pm
    Post #9 - September 21st, 2007, 12:37 pm Post #9 - September 21st, 2007, 12:37 pm
    We are at eight currently, and the idea of a picnic sounds better and better. (Although we need to make plans for rain).

    Mhays, I think that the arboretum is a little further than around the corner. Could you scope the place out and found out if there are some picnic tables or a pavilion where we can meet.

    My schedule is such that I teach until 12:20 and then again at 2:00, so it would make sense for someone else (or someones else) to get the food. Claire's does catering, so this should be possible.

    We can order jerk chicken, brown stew chicken, curry chicken, fried chicken, stew peas with beef, oxtails, cow foot, curry goat, fish, fried plantain, beef patties, salt fish fritters, rich and peas, steamed cabbage, and something called "Hard Dough Bread (Slice)." Or, of course, all of the above. Would anyone be willing to volunteer?
  • Post #10 - September 21st, 2007, 12:50 pm
    Post #10 - September 21st, 2007, 12:50 pm Post #10 - September 21st, 2007, 12:50 pm
    I'll be happy to pick up food. There are several parks within 3 - 4 blocks of Claire's, but I don't know about their seating/picnic facilities.
  • Post #11 - September 22nd, 2007, 8:19 am
    Post #11 - September 22nd, 2007, 8:19 am Post #11 - September 22nd, 2007, 8:19 am
    As far as rain, the only two picnic shelters I know of in Evanston are at the lakefront (one at the lighthouse, the other near NWU)- I think anyone can use them, but they suggest reservations. However, in Skokie, not far from Claire's is Central Park- Central Park Ave & Emerson. According to thePark District Website, it has a new shelter and they don't mention reservations anywhere. I will go scout over the weekend.

    Tarte Tatin - as far as the idea we were kicking around, I haven't forgotten it, but am swamped for the next week or so...if you (all) are interested and haven't already, PM me and I'll get a group of organizers together next week.
  • Post #12 - September 22nd, 2007, 2:00 pm
    Post #12 - September 22nd, 2007, 2:00 pm Post #12 - September 22nd, 2007, 2:00 pm
    OK, back from reconnoitering. The aforementioned park in Skokie has nice picnic areas, but the shelter is strictly for bathrooms; no shelter for picnickers. Ladd Arboretum oddly has a gazebo with no place to sit.

    However, I have two suggestions: if it's rainy, I found a picnic shelter waay in the rear of Isabella Butler Park, near Foster and Hartrey It's in a residential area, so parking will be difficult. If the weather cooperates, I would suggest the more scenic picnic area located near the bike path in Skokie at the SE corner of McCormick and Emerson, which has a parking lot on McCormick just south of the intersection. (None of these are walking distance, but they are relatively close to the restaurant)
  • Post #13 - September 25th, 2007, 11:10 pm
    Post #13 - September 25th, 2007, 11:10 pm Post #13 - September 25th, 2007, 11:10 pm
    Mhays wrote:However, I have two suggestions: if it's rainy, I found a picnic shelter waay in the rear of Isabella Butler Park, near Foster and Hartrey It's in a residential area, so parking will be difficult. If the weather cooperates, I would suggest the more scenic picnic area located near the bike path in Skokie at the SE corner of McCormick and Emerson, which has a parking lot on McCormick just south of the intersection. (None of these are walking distance, but they are relatively close to the restaurant)


    Was Twiggs Park on your reconnoitering list? I was just perusing the "best fried chicken in Evanston" thread, which was referenced in the "Harold's 44" thread.... The Evanston chicken taste-off was held in Twiggs Park, which is on Dodge a few blocks north of Emerson (at Simpson?)--so also close to Claire's--and (according to the thread) had a gazebo with picnic tables. That was from 2005, so I'm not sure what's still there--or the parking situation, etc. If you haven't already checked it out, I'll be happy to do so this weekend.
  • Post #14 - September 25th, 2007, 11:13 pm
    Post #14 - September 25th, 2007, 11:13 pm Post #14 - September 25th, 2007, 11:13 pm
    It's still there, about two blocks north of Claire's, on Dodge. Parking would probably be easy. I'm not sure ... the park may have been re-named ... but it could be a good option if we have too many to fit into Claire's.
  • Post #15 - September 26th, 2007, 8:43 am
    Post #15 - September 26th, 2007, 8:43 am Post #15 - September 26th, 2007, 8:43 am
    I didn't check out Twiggs Park (not sure where it is, exactly) so if somebody wants to do so, that would be great.
  • Post #16 - September 26th, 2007, 1:21 pm
    Post #16 - September 26th, 2007, 1:21 pm Post #16 - September 26th, 2007, 1:21 pm
    I drove past on my way to check out New Soul Cafe ... it's two long blocks north of Claire's ... basically you take Dodge north to its end. It was the site of the Chicken Taste-Off. There's a nice covered Pavilion which could work well if we can't fit into Claire's. Parking near there should be easy.
  • Post #17 - October 4th, 2007, 8:08 pm
    Post #17 - October 4th, 2007, 8:08 pm Post #17 - October 4th, 2007, 8:08 pm
    I have been selected to serve on a jury for a two week trial at the Daley Center. Not surprisingly, we (Robert and Catherine) won't be able to make it to Claire's Corner. Wish me good luck (forget about good lunch!) ... Robert
  • Post #18 - October 6th, 2007, 4:20 pm
    Post #18 - October 6th, 2007, 4:20 pm Post #18 - October 6th, 2007, 4:20 pm
    It appears that we are six people now, and Claire's Korner can seat eight.

    GAF
    Ronnie Suburban
    nr706
    Mhays
    tartetatin
    gp6004

    Perhaps we should plan to get tables at Claire's if possible, and if that doesn't work the first people there can order food and take it up Dodge to the pavillion. The weather on Tuesday is supposed to be partly cloudy with a high of 66, which might be a bit cool, but possible. (I am not likely to be anywhere until about 12:45).
  • Post #19 - October 9th, 2007, 10:12 am
    Post #19 - October 9th, 2007, 10:12 am Post #19 - October 9th, 2007, 10:12 am
    I'm extremely sorry but I have to cancel. I've been requested as a last-minute replacement on a local podcast/radio show, where I'll be discussing the world of (amateur) food enthusiasts and their web sites. I'll try to mention LTHForum.com as often as I possibly can :wink:

    =R=
    Gardening is a bloodsport --Meghan Kleeman

    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #20 - October 9th, 2007, 11:03 am
    Post #20 - October 9th, 2007, 11:03 am Post #20 - October 9th, 2007, 11:03 am
    I'm going to try and make it... very last minute.
    Did you know there is an LTHforum Flickr group? I just found it...
  • Post #21 - October 9th, 2007, 4:41 pm
    Post #21 - October 9th, 2007, 4:41 pm Post #21 - October 9th, 2007, 4:41 pm
    Great time, great company at the tiny Claire's Korner this afternoon. Claire's specialized in jerk chicken, and has a number of other Jamaican specialties.

    The food was good, if rather mildly spiced. Note that Claire's is primarily a takeout place, hence all orders were served in restaurant-style foam clamshell containers.

    Image
    Beef Patty was the appetizer - one served all six of us.

    All the entrees were served with beans and rice, and braised cabbage.

    Image
    Inside the flaky pastry was a slightly spicy ground beef mixture. (Fingers courtesy of tartetatin).

    Image
    We got two versions of the Jerk Chicken. This is the dark meat version; we also got white meat.

    Image
    Brown Stew was tasty, even if I couldn't identify the meat.

    Image
    Oxtails were big and meaty.

    Image
    I think the Curried Goat was my favorite dish.

    Image
    Caramel Cake was our dessert - relatively light, with full caramel flavor.

    Claire's is a tiny place, and as noted above, primarily geared for takeout. Not exactly posh.

    Image
    Around the table clockwise, from top: ChgoMike, GAF, gp6004 hidden behind MHays, and tartetatin's back.
  • Post #22 - October 9th, 2007, 4:52 pm
    Post #22 - October 9th, 2007, 4:52 pm Post #22 - October 9th, 2007, 4:52 pm
    Thanks everybody - good pick, GAF! Had a lovely time as usual!

    I liked the food here a lot - I'm a weenie when it comes to hot pepper, and Claire's didn't even make me blink - However, the food had a lot of flavor, and was cooked to falling-off-the-bone consistency without becoming mushy or indistinct. It struck me as being more like southern comfort food with a Jamaican twist than being authentic Jamaican. (edited to note that I don't have a good representative sample of authentic Jamaican as I usually stop, teary-eyed, after one bite)
  • Post #23 - October 9th, 2007, 7:17 pm
    Post #23 - October 9th, 2007, 7:17 pm Post #23 - October 9th, 2007, 7:17 pm
    Mhays is right. If you want spicy hot Jamaican food bring your Pickapeppa. But if you want very flavorful, nicely cooked Jamaican food, cooked home-style, Claire's Korner is a very good choice (with a nice selection of Jamaican drinks). Often Jamaican meat can be tough and dry, but not here. A very nice, small restaurant (two tables of four seats).
  • Post #24 - October 9th, 2007, 8:41 pm
    Post #24 - October 9th, 2007, 8:41 pm Post #24 - October 9th, 2007, 8:41 pm
    Thanks, guys and gals, for the report. The food looks great and I would have loved to have tried that caramel cake, too. I'm sorry I had to bail at such a late hour.

    =R=
    Gardening is a bloodsport --Meghan Kleeman

    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #25 - October 9th, 2007, 9:52 pm
    Post #25 - October 9th, 2007, 9:52 pm Post #25 - October 9th, 2007, 9:52 pm
    YUM! I will have to try that place out soon!

    Ronnie, how did the radio spot go? Will there be something online for us to listen to?
    "Part of the secret of success in life is to eat what you want and let the food fight it out inside."
    -Mark Twain
  • Post #26 - October 10th, 2007, 10:56 am
    Post #26 - October 10th, 2007, 10:56 am Post #26 - October 10th, 2007, 10:56 am
    Um, one thing that was left a bit up in the air was nailing down the next one - anybody want to take that on?

    I'm afraid to do it myself, as I seem to have the touch of death.... :lol:
  • Post #27 - October 10th, 2007, 11:06 am
    Post #27 - October 10th, 2007, 11:06 am Post #27 - October 10th, 2007, 11:06 am
    Saint Pizza wrote:. . . Ronnie, how did the radio spot go? Will there be something online for us to listen to?

    It was fun and I think it went well.

    It's available as a podcast via iTunes.

    The name of the show is Walking on Air with Betsy and Sal and the episode is entitled Cake Talk and Gastro Porn.

    The food talk begins about 13 minutes into the podcast and my segment starts about 20 minutes in.

    =R=
    Gardening is a bloodsport --Meghan Kleeman

    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #28 - October 10th, 2007, 1:20 pm
    Post #28 - October 10th, 2007, 1:20 pm Post #28 - October 10th, 2007, 1:20 pm
    I had a lovely time - nice seeing familiar faces and meeting new ones. I thought the food was good but I was disappointed in the lack of spice. I understand I might be in the minority in that regard. And for all I know Jamaican food isn't particularly spicy. Ultimately the flavor memory I continue to have from the meal is the caramel cake.... mmmm.... cake.

    Mhays wrote:Um, one thing that was left a bit up in the air was nailing down the next one - anybody want to take that on?

    I'm afraid to do it myself, as I seem to have the touch of death.... :lol:


    I'll give it a try, but I'd appreciate input from the group.

    What about either Bombay Kabob House at 1901 W. Howard or Mandarin House at 819 Noyes? I've been to both establishments once and in my recollection both are okay examples of their particular gastronomic demographic.

    Bombay has an Indian buffet at lunchtime or you can order from the menu (I think). Mandarin House has Mandarin (duh!?) and Korean selections at reasonable prices - it's also Purple Line accessible.

    I don't want to be the one to choose - so help, please. I'll also float the date of Tuesday, November 13.

    Anyone?

    - Mike
    Did you know there is an LTHforum Flickr group? I just found it...
  • Post #29 - October 10th, 2007, 1:31 pm
    Post #29 - October 10th, 2007, 1:31 pm Post #29 - October 10th, 2007, 1:31 pm
    FWIW, the group has been to Mandarin House, although not recently, and there's no reason we couldn't go back.

    11/13 will work for me.
    Last edited by nr706 on October 10th, 2007, 3:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
  • Post #30 - October 10th, 2007, 3:26 pm
    Post #30 - October 10th, 2007, 3:26 pm Post #30 - October 10th, 2007, 3:26 pm
    Oh - I forgot to tell you, Mike, that the point of organizing is that you make the decisions and we tease* you about it afterward :wink: Really, either place is fine with me - I owe Bombay Kebab another try, and have never tried Mandarin house myself. And FWIW, the date works for me.

    * any or all all teasing noted amongst Evanston Lunch Group members shall hitherto and henceforth be described/construed as good-natured and/or lighthearted...

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