Dining out: Lemon cake returns to Portillo's
Lemon cake is back!
Portillo's lemon cake has returned. The cake, which is baked daily in-store and features two yellow cake layers each topped with lemon frosting, is available now through Sept. 10. Chicago-area locations will offer it for $2.89 a slice, according to a company spokeswoman. Find it at all Portillo's locations and via delivery through Portillo's mobile app. Portillo's has locations throughout the suburbs. portillos.com/.
Did you say free?
The Belgian-based bakery Le Pain Quotidien, which opened Monday in downtown Naperville, is offering one complimentary hot beverage with the purchase of any hot beverage through Friday, April 13. This includes coffee, tea, espresso drinks and signature drinks such as Hot Lemon, Honey & Ginger, Matcha Latte and Tumeric Latte. Limit one per customer at the Naperville location only. The bakery offers breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner featuring items such as croissants, French cream doughnuts, standard organic sourdough and gluten-free five-grain breads. Le Pain Quotidien is at 204 S. Washington St., Naperville, (331) 215-5789 or lepainquotidien.com/store/naperville/.
Laugh it up
Don't fear Friday the 13th. Laugh it up instead when Chicago Comedy Scene Radio hosts a special comedy show and dinner from 6 to 9:30 p.m. Friday, April 13, at Maggiano's Little Italy in Naperville. The family-style dinner includes stuffed mushrooms, calamari fritte, four cheese ravioli, baked ziti and sausage, chicken piccata, double chocolate brownies and New York style cheesecake. The dinner and show costs $60 (tax and gratuity included). Cash bar is cash only. Note: This is an adult-themed show. Maggiano's Little Italy is at 1847 Freedom Drive, Naperville, (630) 536-2270 or maggianos.com/.
Denny's new Blaster Fire Burger includes toppings of chipotle Gouda cheese, bacon and spicy Ghost Pepper sauce.
- Courtesy of Denny's
Denny's goes 'Solo'
Calling all "Star Wars" fans: Denny's recently introduced some new movie-inspired dishes ahead of the release of "Solo: A Star Wars Story." Available 24 hours a day, the new items include the Co-Reactor Pancakes (fresh strawberries, strawberry sauce and whipped cream with a side of Crystal Crunch Rocks and warm citrus sauce); the Blaster Fire Burger topped with chipotle Gouda cheese, bacon and spicy Ghost Pepper sauce; and the new Two Moons Skillet and Denny's Lightspeed Slam. They're also offering collector cups featuring characters from the film and topped with a Millennium Falcon lid. The promotion lasts through June 26. Denny's has locations throughout the suburbs. dennys.com/.
Kids cooking class
If your kids love to cook, Maggiano's is hosting a Kids Cooking Class from 9 to 11 a.m. Saturday, April 14. The Maggiano's chef will teach kids how to make Argentinean empanadas. Tickets, which cost $25 per child and $15 per adult, include a lunch buffet, nonalcoholic beverages, tax and an event fee. Advanced tickets are required; see eventbrite.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org for details. This is a hands-on class, so adults must be present. Maggiano's is at 1901 E. Woodfield Road, Schaumburg, (847) 240-1600 or maggianos.com/.
Niche teams with Ream's
Niche Restaurant has teamed up with Ream's Meat Market and Werk Force Brewing Co. for a beer dinner starting at 5:30 p.m. Sunday, April 15. The five-course meal includes a passing course of Ream's prosciutto, a first course of smoked whitefish, a second course of Nuremberg bratwurst, and a third course of dry-aged seared rib-eye. For dessert, nosh on honey-glazed ham gelato, buckwheat pizzelle and shaved maple candy. The dinner is $65. It's $20 for all-you-can-drink Werk Force Lager Lone Ranger Racecar. An optional wine pairing is $30. Niche is at 14 S. Third St., Geneva, (630) 262-1000 or nichegeneva.com/.
• Shaw's Crab House, 1900 E. Higgins Road, Schaumburg, is giving back to guests this tax season. Dine at Shaw's for brunch from 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Sunday, April 15, and receive a gift certificate in the amount of the bill, not to exceed $200, to use on the next visit. There is a minimum purchase of $25 per person, not including tax or gratuity. (847) 517-2722 or shawscrabhouse.com/.
• All beers are half-off on Tuesday, April 17, at Tuscany Oak Brook, 1415 W. 22nd St., Oak Brook, (630) 990-1993.
• Tax Day Happy Hour specials at Tuscany Wheeling on Tuesday, April 17, include $3 small plates with an entree purchase, half-off appetizers, $4 domestic beer, $5 glasses of select wine, $5 import and micro brews and $2 off any glass of wine. Specials run from 4 to 6 p.m. and 8 to 10 p.m. at Tuscany Wheeling, 550 S. Milwaukee Ave., Wheeling, (847) 465-9988. tuscanychicago.com/.
• Chili's hopes to brighten your tax day with the new $5 Cherry Blossom Margarita. Valid every day in April in the bar and dining room. Chili's has locations throughout the suburbs. chilis.com/.
Two Brothers Brewing Company joins with chef Alton Morris of McQ's Bar & Grill for a special craft dinner starting at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, April 19. Chef Morris has created a four-course menu that pairs dishes with Two Brothers' brews. Each guest will receive a McQ's tasting glass to take home. Dinner costs $45. McQ's Bar & Grill is at 730 N. Bolingbrook Drive, Bolingbrook, (630) 756-5850 or mcqsbar.com/.