The Doughnut Vault in Chicago

The Urban Grocer Contributor

By The Urban Grocer in Cool Travel on Thursday 21 April 2011

If you think the world of fried pastry starts with Dunkin Donuts and ends with Krispy Kreme, then you need to hop on the next plane to Chicago. As of about three weeks ago, the Windy City is now home to a tiny underground shop called The Doughnut Vault, where “fat and delicious” doughnuts are made fresh every morning.

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Jessica Labatte

Alison Zavos Contributor

By Alison Zavos in New Photography on Tuesday 8 March 2011

Jessica Labatte received a Master of Fine Arts from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her photography of ‘everyday objects and materials focus on color and shape while emphasizing a collage aesthetic grounded in both the illusionistic tendencies of photography and the still life tradition’. One of her images was recently featured on the cover of Fantom, and her joint show with Ali Bailey recently concluded at the Poppy Sebire Gallery in London.

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Little Howlin Wolf

Gerry Mak Reader Find

By Gerry Mak in New Music on Tuesday 22 February 2011

James Pobiega aka Little Howlin Wolf was an iconic figure in Chicago, playing sax and blues on the streets of the Windy City for decades until he moved to Baltimore. Now he’s a fixture here, and he’s quickly become one of the many unforgettable characters that makes this city so amazing.

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Kelsey Shultis

Contributions Reader Find

By Beatriz Tellez in New Art on Wednesday 2 February 2011

In her latest series of large-scale abstract paintings, Chicago-based artist Kelsey Shultis looks to emotional and physical structures to capture ‘strength’ within physical chaos. An emphasis on texture and physicality of the medium, along with the use of industrial materials and touches of bright color, result in these fierce images that impart a feeling of strength and empowerment upon the viewer.

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Meaty Ogre versus Crushcon7: Sword

Dave Mata Reader Find

By Dave Mata in New Music on Monday 18 October 2010

Second in the series of hip hop instrumentals with a different producer on each side of the LP comes Sword for Fieldwerk Recordings. Something about hypnotic rhythms paired with spacey synth samples and R&B] vocals just adds up to a cold-ass winter for me. Meaty Ogre takes side A, showing off his craft for sampling, […]

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Mindy’s HotChocolate

The Urban Grocer Contributor

By The Urban Grocer in New Design on Tuesday 28 September 2010

Anyone who’s had the pleasure of tucking into a sumptuous 72 percent dark French chocolate or zippy cinnamon hot cocoa at Mindy’s HotChocolate’s dark wood-paneled bar can attest to the Chicago eatery’s sensuous spin on the beverage. Now, designer Kyle Tezak’s soon-to-be-rolled-out interactive pinup gal packaging makes it easier to harness its libidinous energy in […]

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Fourteen years of Derek Erdman in Chicago

Dave Mata Reader Find

By Dave Mata in Cool Travel on Thursday 12 August 2010

After selling some 3,000 pieces out of the 4,000 or so that he has produced in the past decade, Chicago artist Derek Erdman is getting out of dodge. Moving westward has not stopped him from putting together one final show at High Concept Laboratories. Without Wax will feature over 1,000 paintings and drawings of this poignant Ohio-born, Chicago-bred genius.

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Chicago’s Truffle Truffle shop

The Urban Grocer Contributor

By The Urban Grocer in New Food and Packaging on Thursday 12 August 2010

Call it the tomboy truffle. Take those classic manly snacks — pretzels and beer — and wrap them up in a little ball of smooth, rich milk chocolate ganache. There you have it: the beer and pretzel truffle from Chicago’s own Truffle Truffle chocolate shop. Feeling a little more gourmet? Check out their pinot truffle — a scrumptious little ball of red-wine infused dark chocolate ganache, covered in another layer of dark chocolate.

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Zines by Parking Block Publishing

Gerry Mak Reader Find

By Gerry Mak in New Products on Friday 30 July 2010

Here’s something you can’t get on a Kindle: handcrafted art zines. Chicago-based Parking Block Publishing specializes in small-run, inexpensive books created by local artists, photographers, and printers.

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You Are Beautiful street art displays

Lin Tan Reader Find

By Lin Tan in New Events on Thursday 29 July 2010

This anonymous crew from Chicago have collaborated with artists from all over the world to produce feel-good, inspiring street art. You can find their lyrical work on top of buildings, on trains, against a park fences, written in a multitude of different languages. But their message is a simple one: ‘You Are Beautiful‘.

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Tom Torluemke

Gerry Mak Reader Find

By Gerry Mak in New Art on Friday 23 July 2010

Chicago-area artist Tom Torluemke creates color-saturated, surreal images loaded with grotesque, sexual and scatological themes without being completely repulsive.

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Dark Matter coffee

Anna Trier Reader Find

By Anna Trier in New Food and Packaging on Thursday 22 July 2010

Dark Matter is a brilliant coffee company that was born this past forth of July. It is associated with (and lives above) the amazing Star Lounge Coffee Bar in Chicago. Star Lounge has been roasting its own coffee and selling it in store for a while. And now it’s available for sale outside of their own store.

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Sleigh Bells to play Pitchfork Music Festival

Anna Trier Reader Find

By Anna Trier in New Events on Saturday 3 July 2010

I was given my first couple Sleigh Bells tracks by a friend last Fall and haven’t they blown up since then! The duo will be playing at the upcoming Pitchfork Music Festival in Chicago. Their debut album, Treats, has just come out with new, and old (and improved), tracks that are noisy, growly, and sexy […]

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Lightning strikes three tallest buildings in Chicago

Gerry Mak Reader Find

By Gerry Mak in Cool Travel on Monday 28 June 2010

A recent system of storms blew through the entire Northeast, drenching parts of Delaware, New Jersey, Maryland, and Virginia, but failing to drop any moisture on heat-paralyzed Baltimore. Still, the massive lightning cloud that loomed just south of the city a couple days ago was amazing to look at. It was probably related to the […]

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Nice Cream

Anna Trier Reader Find

By Anna Trier in New Food and Packaging on Friday 11 June 2010

Nice Cream is a hand-crafted ice cream company, whose flavors change with the seasons. Kris Swanberg stated making ice creams for friends and family when she received an ice cream maker as a wedding present and a year later was producing small batches of this creamy goodness for sale in pint sized servings.

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