Archive for the ‘wine bar’ Tag

A Non-Taxing Experience   3 comments

Full disclosure: I have known the executive chef at Income Tax since he was in first grade; his line cook all his life: he’s my youngest son. Although I had nothing to do with Ryan Henderson’s rise to his role, I will take a little credit for Andrew’s interest in food and cooking.
It might be better if I had no knowledge or familiarity with the kitchen staff since it could be perceived that my judgement is clouded. It is. Nonetheless, the meal ranks high among my most deliciously memorable.

Income Tax, located in the Edgewater neighborhood of Chicago, and Ryan have garnered numerous accolades since its opening December. All are well deserved and the result of careful planning by the owners and Ryan. The concept is a wine bar with food designed to pair with wines representing Spain, Germany, France and Italy. Rest assured wines of other countries are also available. The contemporary vibe and wonderful service complete the dining experience.

I was especially impressed with the elements of creativity. Among the appetizers is a house-made pretzel served with a savory and sweet cherry mustard. That’s  right, cherry mustard. Scallops are paired with chorizo for a lively blend of flavors. A house made bratwurst features strawberry relish. A soup made with ringlets of caraway crepe adds lamb bacon (made in-house). The list goes on.

Of course, no meal is complete without dessert: rich chocolate caneles, port ice cream and chocolate mousse are the ideal way to end a perfect meal.

Excellent work, kitchen crew — even if our ties are long standing!

Income Tax
Five Plates
5959 N. Broadway
Chicago, IL

The Potential for Going South   Leave a comment

The occasion can just as easily make a dining establishment enjoyable as the food and service can detract. A friend’s recent birthday celebration drew us to 2 South Wine Bar, a fun place to dine but not without some shortcomings. Interestingly, the evening was also our server’s birthday, which he didn’t seem to mind spending serving others, although he wasn’t necessarily exemplary.

One of the most impressive things about 2 South is its wine menu. Once we selected a bottle, it took a while before it arrived at our table. Another long period of time passed before our food order was taken, and in keeping with the delay theme, our entrees were a long time coming. Fortunately, the wait was overshadowed by good conversation.


I must say though, I was completely happy with my order of pasta with Oxtail Bolognese served with pomodoro, basil and baked parmesan chips. The menu identified the pasta as vermicelli, but it was actually a thicker variety. It was beautifully plated, perfectly seasoned but small in quantity. Two friends ordered the Macaroni and Cheese, which has become the comfort food of choice on many menus. While it was tasty, it didn’t stand out and I tried not to be too smug about my not-filling plate of upscale spaghetti.

Since this was a birthday celebration we had to order dessert. We shared S’mores: toasted vanilla bean marshmallow, chocolate, and crushed graham cracker; and the Cardinal, a chocolate raspberry confection. Neither stood out, and we forgot to even sing.

We enjoyed ourselves, but may not be so forgiving next time.

2 South Wine Bar

Three Plates

2 S. 25th Street

Colorado Springs, CO