Today is Chicago's 172nd birthday, and I can't imagine she's ever looked or tasted better.
I mean seriously.... We have a sparkling, gorgeous lakefront; a twinkly Bean in Millennium Park; and the Art Institutes' absolutely stunning Modern Wing opening in a matter of months (wink, wink, nudge, nudge), and that's just within a few square city blocks. We have Grant Achatz and Michael Carlson keeping the entire culinary world guessing what's next. We have dozens of home-grown boutiques dedicated exclusively to shockingly exotic truffles, gourmet cupcakes, and organic cookies for dogs. We even have cult-status gourmet cocktail bars so rarefied, no one can get into them. Oh, yes, and there's certain former Senator in the White House, and a very promising bid for the Olympics brewing.
So I don't want to hear any boohooing about the economy or the weather today, people! Today, I want to see cake and candles and puppies frolicking. May I suggest something luscious from Sweet Mandy B's on the way home? Or a cocktail named for our fair city?
A classic after-dinner drink from the city of big shoulders
2 oz. Brandy
1 oz. Champagne
Dash of Angostura Bitters
Dash Triple Sec
Use a cocktail glass with a sugar rim (make by rubbing a lemon around the rim and then dipping in powdered sugar). Then combine ingredients (except the champagne) in a shaker with ice. Shake well and strain into the glass. Finally, add the champagne.