Ever have that moment when the FOMO is real? Maybe it’s just me, but I missed out on St. Patrick’s Day this year. Somehow, the holiday falling on a Friday had me oscillating between last weekend and the weekend before until suddenly it was all over, and that was when it hit me: I totally missed out.
This week, I’m hoping to save you from missing out on the fun before the moment passes. I’m digging into a righteously proper Shepherd’s pie, wild rice-adorned doughnuts, and the original classic cocktail.
If you’re like me and forgot to take your shillelagh out of storage, get on over to this refreshed pub at Woodbury’s Prestwick golf course. This traditional savory pie is the work of the restaurant’s new executive chef, who tells me the recipe is handed down from generations of rebels and scalawags. The rich base is super beefy with just a bit of gravy, and the topping is a fluffy potato cloud with just a little bit of crispy edge.
Chef Stewart Woodman, formerly of Heidi’s, is continuing to serve his elegant cuisine at this restaurant in Bloomington. For brunch, he’s going down a fantastic road of great doughnut making. All of the doughnuts have a cake base, and the fluffy interior is wrapped in a ridiculously crisp exterior. They are just small enough that you could easily eat a few without being overwhelmed. I tried a whole lot of them: burgers with doughnuts as buns, doughnuts topped with outrageously tasty duck confit—but my absolute favorite was draped in chocolate and topped with nutty, puffed wild rice.
This Sunday, the three-year-old restaurant in the North Loop is kicking off a brunch menu that I’m anxious to test out. The menu is overseen by executive chef Mike DeCamp (best known for Monello and his long-standing job as chef de cuisine at the dearly departed La Belle Vie). His take on brunch will undoubtedly be delicious, but when I’m inside this room, it’s impossible not to have a drink. Jesse Held leads the cocktail program, creating a bevy of morning libations, and I cannot wait to try the Brunch Old Fashioned. The bacon-washed bourbon is mixed with maple syrup and a few dashes of bitters.