Chicago – 8/10/14 – Japonais by Morimoto, Aviary celebration of World Class Bartender of the Year Charles Joly

My last experience at Japonais was at the NY location many years ago and it was terrible. I had heard good things about the Chicago location since Morimoto redesigned the menu, so even though I generally disfavor restaurants with attached celebrity chefs who aren’t in the city, after several large meals sushi seemed like a great idea. And how amazing to walk into a restaurant in Chicago and run into people I know (and 2 nights in a row). Yet another reason I feel so at home here.

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Tuna ‘pizza’ – anchovy aioli, olives, jalapeño, micro cilantro

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Clam miso – white miso dashi broth, Manila clams

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I always miss all of the special events at Aviary so it was an unexpected treat to find out I would be able to attend one – a surprise celebration for Charles Joly. I still can’t believe that everyone was able to keep this as a surprise with all prep-work being done onsite, much with Charles in the building, and with the party starting upstairs while Charles was busy in the Office. All of Charles’ cocktails from the competition were served as well as various punches and snacks. Such a fun evening and it was so nice to see so many friendly faces as well as meet quite a few people whose names I had heard many times. Its still hard to believe how many friends I have made through this place. Until my next trip…

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