Newsflash: Dining doesn't have to be boring. Several upcoming restaurant events are sure to add some spice to your life. Who knows? You might even want to skip lunch (not that we would ever suggest that).
Gibsons Steakhouse is currently celebrating its 20th anniversary with gifts galore. Starting today, Wednesday, June 10, through Monday, June 29, the Rush Street staple will hand out one $1,000 gift certificate per day. (You can sign up to win at any Gibson Restaurant Group venue, including Gibsons, Hugo's Frog Bar, LUXBAR and Quartino.) The excitement will culminate on Tuesday, June 30, when the restaurant will host a grand celebration featuring $25,000 in raffle prizes (including 20 $200 gift cards, 20 ribeye steaks, 20 Australian cold water lobster tails and 20 bottles of Gibsons Reserve Cabernet) and Gibsons' original menu from 1989.
Help keep Lake Michigan clean on Thursday, June 11, when Shaw's Crab House in River North hosts the "Taste of the Great Lakes" dinner. The seventh annual event benefits the Alliance for the Great Lakes, an organization dedicated to conserving and restoring the world's largest freshwater resource through policy, education and local efforts. (BTW: Alliance president Cameron Davis has been tapped by the Obama administration to serve as a special advisor to the Environmental Protection Agency overseeing Great Lakes restoration -- score!) The event will take place from 6-9PM and will feature dishes from Shaw's, beers from Goose Island, artisan cheeses from Wisconsin and wines from throughout the Great Lakes region. Live blues music and a huge silent auction will add to the fun. Tickets are $100 in advance and $110 at the door.
Roll with it, baby, at Koi's sushi-making class, where you'll master the art of traditional maki rolls. Koi executive chef Bing Zhou and wife and co-owner Sandy Chen will lead participants through the sushi steps: selecting and preparing raw fish, rolling maki and crafting California, spicy tuna and shrimp tempura rolls. Guests will also receive a $20 gift certificate to use on their next visit to Koi. The class will be held at 11:30AM on Saturday, June 13 at the Evanston Japanese dining destination and costs $10 to attend.