photo by Derek Richmond
Back on her home turf after a stint in NYC, Belinda Chang is clearly having fun at Maple & Ash, a swanky new steakhouse on Chicago’s Gold Coast. Alongside the expected powerhouse cabernets and Bordeaux blends, she offers alternatives like “Racy Whites” (riesling, grüner and pinot gris) or “Girls, Girls, Girls” (wines made by females). Chef Danny Grant adds his own bits of whimsy to the steakhouse fare, with a tower of wood-roasted seafood and a retro wedge salad. If you aren’t looking for a full-on feast, head to the bar downstairs, where cocktails come with upscale bar snacks like salmon tartare and herb-flecked burrata on toast. Check out the “neighborhood list” for bottles under $50, with buys like von Buhl 2012 Riesling Sekt and Raventós i Blanc 2013 Silencis.