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Your Family Is Invited To Dine With Purple Asparagus - 8/28

Your Family Is Invited To Dine With Purple Asparagus - 8/28
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  • Your Family Is Invited To Dine With Purple Asparagus - 8/28

    Post #1 - August 10th, 2005, 12:35 pm
    Post #1 - August 10th, 2005, 12:35 pm Post #1 - August 10th, 2005, 12:35 pm
    ANNOUNCING PURPLE ASPARAGUS' FIRST "RESTAURANTS ARE FOR EVERYBODY" FINE DINING EVENT

    Sunday, August 28, 3:30 to 6pm
    at Thyme, 464 N. Halsted in Chicago


    We know as well as you do how hard it can be to enjoy our city's outstanding restaurants when you have kids. You can hire a babysitter-- but that doesn't help your kids learn about food or how to behave in a restaurant. Or you can stick to "family restaurants" (but that usually won't help them learn about real food, either).

    Now Purple Asparagus presents another choice—all-family events at Chicago's finest restaurants, where kids can be kids and grownups can talk to grownups and everybody can enjoy great food without fear of funny looks from other tables. Thanks to Chef (and dad) John Bubala, we are pleased to present our pioneering Restaurants Are For Everybody event at the acclaimed Thyme Restaurant in River West.

    Decorated with exotic Asian and African art which the kids will enjoy, as well as an outdoor patio, Thyme presents Chef Bubala's French-American bistro cuisine, rooted in seasonal ingredients (so you could take your kids to a farmer's market the day before and show them what they'll be eating), and often roasted over an open fire. A wide variety of appetizers and tasting portions will be offered hors d'oeuvre-style, so everybody can find plenty they'll like to eat. There will be soda and juice for the kids, and a cash bar for adults. Prices are:

    Adults and teens: $40 per person (cash bar for drinks)
    Big Kids (5 through 12): $10, includes free soda and juice
    Little Kids (4 and under): Free!

    TO RESERVE YOUR FAMILY'S SPOT:
    This is our first fine dining event and we want to show restaurant owners that there's real interest in family-friendly events at great restaurants. Space is limited, so we strongly encourage purchasing your family's tickets via Paypal now.

    HOW TO PURCHASE TICKETS VIA PAYPAL:

    1. Add total of adults and teens (at $40 each), plus big kids aged 5 through 12 (at $10 each), and add $1 for handling. For instance:

    2 adults ($80) + 1 kid 5 through 12 ($10) + $1 = $91

    2. Click here to log in to Paypal, then select Send Money.

    3. Make payment to bread@purpleasparagus.com

    4. Please list names of all attendees including free little kids (4 and under) in the comment box like this:

    Adults: George Asparagus, Martha Asparagus. Big Kid: Emily Asparagus. Little Kid: Jason Asparagus

    We'll contact you if there are any questions.

    HOW TO PURCHASE TICKETS BY MAIL:

    If you don't want to use Paypal, send a check for the full amount to:

    Purple Asparagus
    1824 W. Newport
    Chicago IL 60657

    If you are sending by check, please include a phone number or email address so that we can contact you in case space is no longer available when it is received, or for any other reason.

    For more information about Thyme Restaurant, visit its website: http://www.thymechicago.com/
    MAG
    www.monogrammeevents.com

    "I've never met a pork product I didn't like."
  • Post #2 - August 18th, 2005, 7:49 pm
    Post #2 - August 18th, 2005, 7:49 pm Post #2 - August 18th, 2005, 7:49 pm
    Who or what is Purple Aparagus?
  • Post #3 - August 18th, 2005, 7:51 pm
    Post #3 - August 18th, 2005, 7:51 pm Post #3 - August 18th, 2005, 7:51 pm
    http://lthforum.com/bb/viewtopic.php?t=3951

    http://www.purpleasparagus.com/
    Ed Fisher
    my chicago food photos

    RIP LTH.
  • Post #4 - August 26th, 2005, 3:10 pm
    Post #4 - August 26th, 2005, 3:10 pm Post #4 - August 26th, 2005, 3:10 pm
    And in response to a question that I received by PM, folks without kids are certainly welcome to attend. All that's necessary is that you like being around kids. Having just seen the menu, it's going to be a great time for a great price. Plus, they'll be goldfish races and watermelon spitting contests. All for $40.00 a person, $5.00 of which is being donated to Purple Asparagus for our programs including this September's cooking demos for kids at the Edible Garden at the Farm-at-the-Zoo.
    MAG
    www.monogrammeevents.com

    "I've never met a pork product I didn't like."
  • Post #5 - August 28th, 2005, 8:08 pm
    Post #5 - August 28th, 2005, 8:08 pm Post #5 - August 28th, 2005, 8:08 pm
    Well, the weather and the setting could hardly have been more perfect for Purple Asparagus' first "Restaurants Are For Everybody" event-- a gorgeous end-of-summer day on the extremely pleasant outdoor patio at Thyme. All the in-crowd was there, including Thor and parents:

    Image

    Lucantonio and Amata:

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    The daughter of Maple Leaf:

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    And my neighbor across the street, Ruby:

    Image

    Thyme's chef, John Bubala, was an early and enthusiastic supporter of the idea of Purple Asparagus and it was really great that he and his staff went all out to create fun as well as food for the kids. There was bobbing for apples:

    Image

    I wanted to ask that kid where he got his shirt and if it came in XL. There were also goldfish races, in specially constructed racing tanks, aka gutters:

    Image

    King's Thursday (Ms. Mike G) had to be careful afterwards remembering which one wasn't her drink.

    Image

    Speaking of drinks, Thyme turned out to be one place to get a pretty good lime rickey, at least once I told them how to make it.

    Image

    The idea, which proved to be exactly the right one, was to serve everything hors d'oeuvres style, so kids didn't have to deal with plates, buffet lines, etc. We tried about a zillion things, everything from incredibly decadent lobster on skewers to kid-friendly grilled cheese and pizza. This bruschetta, not surprising given that it's prime tomato season, was a flavor explosion in your mouth:

    Image

    Likewise this version of caprese using cherry tomatoes:

    Image

    Thyme makes a mean crabcake, with some kick to it:

    Image

    Several seafood things were outstanding, including the aforementioned lobster and shrimp in a coconutty sweet sauce. Also excellent were slices of duck breast with a little chutney on top:

    Image

    Correctly gauging the mood of this crowd, there was plenty of dessert on the bill: crepes with chocolate sauce and pistachios, strawberry rhubarb and chocolate tarts:

    Image

    AND ice cream cones,

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    yes, I said ice cream cones.

    Image

    The first Purple Asparagus fine dining event was a hit and a great way to introduce kids to a fine restaurant without worries. Big credit to those who planned it, including MAG:

    Image

    Jen aka Hagandier:

    Image

    And Thyme chef John Bubala, seen here with his most enthusiastic server and goldfish racer. Thanks to them all for a great afternoon!

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    Watch Sky Full of Bacon, the Chicago food HD podcast!
    New episode: Soil, Corn, Cows and Cheese
    Watch the Reader's James Beard Award-winning Key Ingredient here.
  • Post #6 - August 29th, 2005, 10:33 am
    Post #6 - August 29th, 2005, 10:33 am Post #6 - August 29th, 2005, 10:33 am
    Mike:

    To my considerable chagrin, I was unable to attend. Many thanks for the report and many thanks more for the swell pictures.

    Antonius
    Alle Nerven exzitiert von dem gewürzten Wein -- Anwandlung von Todesahndungen -- Doppeltgänger --
    - aus dem Tagebuch E.T.A. Hoffmanns, 6. Januar 1804.
    ________
    Na sir is na seachain an cath.
  • Post #7 - August 29th, 2005, 1:20 pm
    Post #7 - August 29th, 2005, 1:20 pm Post #7 - August 29th, 2005, 1:20 pm
    Yes, thanks for the great pictures, Mike. Besides the items you mentioned, I also really enjoyed the new potatoes filled with baccala. And those dessert crepes were fabulous.

    MAG, do you have a copy of the complete menu of what we had? Thanks very much to you and Jen for organizing it and to John Bubala for a great meal. (But how long can we keep that goldfish away from our cats... ? :shock: )
  • Post #8 - August 29th, 2005, 4:28 pm
    Post #8 - August 29th, 2005, 4:28 pm Post #8 - August 29th, 2005, 4:28 pm
    The event's success was due to a collaborative effort by our entire board. Thanks are due to GWiv for working with John Bubala to create such an outstanding spread; to Mike G for creating the "Restaurants are for Everyone" concept and setting up the Paypal site; to Aaron Deacon and Kay Christ for soliciting many of the silent auction items and then to Heather Carney, Zach Dier, Ellen Wiviott and my husband for their help with set up.
    MAG
    www.monogrammeevents.com

    "I've never met a pork product I didn't like."
  • Post #9 - August 30th, 2005, 6:04 am
    Post #9 - August 30th, 2005, 6:04 am Post #9 - August 30th, 2005, 6:04 am
    Amata wrote:MAG, do you have a copy of the complete menu of what we had?

    Amata,

    Here's Thyme's menu, which I thought not only delicious, but perfect for the event. I should point out that, while Melissa said I worked with John Bubala on the menu, in actuality John simply sent me an email filled with terrific sounding suggestions and I, in the words of the much under appreciated Ton Loc, simply responded. "Let's do it."

    Kudos to John Bubala, his son Jack, Thyme staff, along with Melissa and the rest of the Purple Asparagus group for a terrific event.

    Menu, Purple Asparagus at Thyme. (8.28.05)

    Bacalo new potato cups
    Mushroom bruschetta
    Tomato bruschetta
    Gulf shrimp w/vanilla bean nage
    Spit roasted rabbit tarts
    Crabcake
    Sun dried tomato and goat cheese tart
    Beef tenderloin sandwiches
    Australian lobster tail skewers
    Prosciutto & melon skewers
    Organic watermelon, yellow and red
    Roasted duck breast w/ fig relish
    Heirloom tomato, basil and buffalo mozzarella skewers. Aka, Caprese on a stick. :)

    Chicken nuggets w/ketchup
    Brioche grilled cheese sandwiches.
    Pizza

    Ice cream cones
    Rhubarb creme tarts
    Chocolate hazelnut crepes
    Chocolate ganache tarts

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    Last edited by G Wiv on August 30th, 2005, 10:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #10 - August 30th, 2005, 7:53 am
    Post #10 - August 30th, 2005, 7:53 am Post #10 - August 30th, 2005, 7:53 am
    Damn, I didn't get a spit-roasted rabbit tart!

    I plan to go back to Thyme soon, especially if it's still nice enough to sit out on that patio, partly to show appreciation but mainly because the food was really good. I have a feeling I'm not the only grownup with plans like that.
    Watch Sky Full of Bacon, the Chicago food HD podcast!
    New episode: Soil, Corn, Cows and Cheese
    Watch the Reader's James Beard Award-winning Key Ingredient here.
  • Post #11 - August 30th, 2005, 11:25 am
    Post #11 - August 30th, 2005, 11:25 am Post #11 - August 30th, 2005, 11:25 am
    Gary
    Mike G wrote:I plan to go back to Thyme soon
    <snip>
    mainly because the food was really good. I have a feeling I'm not the only grownup with plans like that.

    Mike,

    You are not alone, Ellen and I were discussing the exact same thing over coffee the next morning.

    Speaking of good food, a good time, and the incredible accomplishment of keeping 25 kids under 5 and 7 under 12, not to mention the adults, entertained in fine fashion was no mean trick. Though with Mag at the helm of Purple Asparagus, and John B, along with co-captain Jack, manning the ship at Thyme, everyone had a grand time.

    As has been mentioned the Goldfish races, with John's son Jack as head goldfish wrangler, went swimmingly. :)
    Image

    Bobbing for apples just ducky
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    There was also watercoloring and juggling acts. Here's Thor balancing a tray of lobster skewers on his head.
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    Grilled cheese on brioche was a hit.
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    Though one or two seemed to be considering the goldfish. :)
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    Or even a sip or two of vino. :)
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    Speaking of vino, every picture Mike G appears, at least on my camera, to be drinking a Lime Ricky. Note background in this picture of Ellen. All in the name of LTH Science, I'm sure. :)
    Image

    Food, was has been said was, not only terrific, but spot-on appropriate for Purple Asparagus, the setting and intended audience.

    Caprese on a stick. :)
    Image

    And duck with fig relish were two of my favorites.
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    There was one odd moment though. John was showing me a headstone buried in the garden, and relating a tale or two of haunting
    Image

    When, out of nowhere, a disembodied head appeared. Very Spooky. :)
    Image

    Thanks again to John Bubala, his son Jack,
    Image

    and the staff at Thyme for helping make the first Purple Asparagus Restaurants are for Everyone event a success.

    Additional pictures may be found here

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow

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