The Chicago Journal

Indulge in the Splendors of Indienne’s Michelin-Starred Thanksgiving To-Go Extravaganza

As the vibrant city of Chicago revels in the glory of autumn, there’s a new culinary star on the horizon. Freshly adorned with its inaugural Michelin star, the esteemed establishment, Indienne, beckons you to transcend the ordinary this Thanksgiving. Step into a realm where tradition meets innovation, as Indienne unveils a specially curated to-go menu designed to infuse your festive table with the enchanting flavors of India.

Elevated Thanksgiving To-Go Options: A Fusion of Cultures:

Indienne’s culinary artisans have masterfully woven a tapestry of flavors, fusing the warmth of Thanksgiving traditions with the aromatic spices of India. Each dish on the meticulously crafted to-go menu is a testament to the restaurant’s commitment to culinary excellence. Priced at $75 per person, with a minimum order for two, this gastronomic journey encompasses an array of delights, including soul-warming soup, artisanal bread, tantalizing starters, sumptuous mains, delectable sides, and a grand finale of dessert.

Key Details:

Ordering Deadline: Seize the opportunity by placing your order before the curtain falls on November 20.

Pickup Schedule: On November 22, between 1-3 p.m., embark on a culinary adventure as you collect your Thanksgiving feast from the exquisite Indienne, nestled at 217 W. Huron St.

Indienne’s Michelin Star and Culinary Distinction:

Indienne, with its Michelin star adorning its culinary crown, stands as a testament to the city’s diverse and dynamic dining scene. A trailblazer in its own right, Indienne not only secured a Michelin star but also etched its name as the first Indian restaurant in Chicago to receive this prestigious accolade.

Explore the Feast: A Glimpse into Indienne’s Thanksgiving To-Go Menu:

1. Soup: Butternut Squash Symphony

Elevate your senses with the opulent butternut squash soup, a harmonious blend of fennel, ginger, and coconut milk.

2. Bread: Masala Babka Elegance

The air is filled with the heady aroma of masala babka, a luscious creation featuring caramelized onion, garlic, chili, and house-churned truffle butter.

3. Starters: A Prelude to Flavorful Delights

  • Turkey Gustaba: Organic turkey meatballs dance in a rich Kashmiri sauce with a medley of house blend spices.
  • Jackfruit Cutlet (V): Immerse yourself in the vegetarian delight of a tender jackfruit patty, crumb-fried to perfection, accompanied by green mango mustard and tomato chutney.

4. Mains: A Culinary Journey Unfolds

  • Chicken (Mussulam) Roulade: Succulent yogurt-marinated chicken takes center stage, embraced by a house spice blend and saffron musallam gravy.
  • Mushroom Manti (V): Delight in the symphony of flavors as homemade manti pasta is stuffed with spiced mushroom mixture, Parmesan yakhni, walnut, and truffle.

5. Accompaniments: Perfect Complements to the Feast

  • Creamy Mashed Potato: A velvety blend infused with bay leaf and nutmeg.
  • Roasted Brussel Sprouts: A twist of lentils and coconut elevates this Thanksgiving classic.
  • Berry Pulao: Fragrant basmati rice adorned with dried berries and caramelized onions.

6. Dessert: Sweet Finale with Doda-Pecan Tart

Conclude your gastronomic journey with the pièce de résistance, the Doda-Pecan Tart, a sublime creation melding caramelized milk and pecan indulgence.


Indienne’s Michelin-starred Thanksgiving to-go menu transcends the ordinary, inviting you on a culinary odyssey where every bite tells a story. Immerse yourself in the fusion of Thanksgiving traditions and the exotic allure of Indian spices, meticulously crafted by the culinary maestros at Indienne.

Chicago City Council Approves Phasing Out Subminimum Wage for Tipped Workers

Chicago Takes a Historic Step Toward Fair Wages

In a groundbreaking and historic move, the Chicago City Council has voted in favor of eliminating the subminimum wage for tipped workers, catapulting Chicago to the forefront of the national discussion on workers’ rights and fair compensation. This monumental decision marks Chicago as the largest city in the United States to take this progressive step, setting an example for others to follow.

A Victory for Mayor Brandon Johnson and Progressive Advocates

This decision represents a significant political victory for Mayor Brandon Johnson and his progressive allies within the City Council. With a resounding vote of 36-10, the City Council approved an ordinance that will reshape the compensation landscape for workers who rely on tips to make ends meet. Mayor Johnson and his supporters have successfully championed this initiative, demonstrating their commitment to addressing wage disparities in the city.

A Compromise for a Smoother Transition

The road to this historic decision involved a careful negotiation process between Mayor Johnson and the Illinois Restaurant Association. Initially, the plan was to implement higher wages for tipped workers over a two-year period. However, the compromise reached extends this transition to a more gradual five-year plan. This adjustment aims to strike a balance between the interests of workers and businesses, allowing the latter to adapt to the changes while ensuring fair and equitable compensation for the former.

A Detailed Transition Plan to Fair Wages

Under the revised plan, the tipped minimum wage will incrementally increase as follows:

  • July 1, 2024: 68% of the full minimum wage
  • July 1, 2025: 76% of the full minimum wage
  • July 1, 2026: 84% of the full minimum wage
  • July 1, 2027: 92% of the full minimum wage
  • July 1, 2028: 100% of the full minimum wage

Keeping Pace with Inflation for Sustainable Wages

To ensure that workers’ wages keep pace with the cost of living, the full minimum wage in Chicago undergoes an annual adjustment every July 1. This adjustment is based on the increase in the Consumer Price Index (CPI) or a fixed rate of 2.5%, whichever is lower. As of now, the full minimum wage in Chicago stands at $15.80 per hour, with the tipped minimum wage set at $9.48 per hour.

Advocating for Fair Wages and Economic Development

Supporters of this groundbreaking decision argue that tipped workers deserve more than just the uncertainty of fluctuating tips. Ald. Jessie Fuentes, a prominent advocate for the ordinance, emphasized the broader implications, stating, “When we talk about building safer communities, we’re talking about folks having a minimum wage, and we’re talking about economic development and viability in our communities. We are talking about making sure we have a fair wage.”

The Concerns Surrounding Economic Impact

While this decision has garnered widespread support, opponents express concerns about its potential economic impact. Some fear that as businesses adjust to cover higher labor costs by raising prices, customers may tip less, potentially affecting the livelihoods of tipped workers. Businesses, particularly those already facing financial challenges, are apprehensive that these changes could pose a significant burden on their operations.

The Restaurant Association’s Alternative Proposal

The Illinois Restaurant Association had put forth an alternative proposal that would have increased tipped wages exclusively for restaurants with annual revenues exceeding $3 million. However, this alternative did not gain traction, and the association ultimately supported the phaseout of the subminimum wage over five years.

Balancing Profitability and Fair Wages

Despite concerns about potential staff reductions or business closures due to increased labor costs, Ald. Fuentes remains optimistic that Chicago’s restaurants can continue to operate profitably while providing fair wages to their workers. Striking this balance between profitability and equitable compensation will be a central challenge as the transition unfolds.

Addressing Systemic Inequities in Wage Practices

Supporters of the phased elimination of the subminimum wage highlight the systemic inequities and exploitative employment practices that have led some workers to earn less than they need to survive. Although Chicago employers are legally obligated to bridge the wage gap when tips fall short, enforcement of this requirement has been lacking, primarily due to workers’ fears of job loss.

Dinner and a Movie Closes, Founder Rashad Bailey Cites Racism as the Root Cause

In the city of Chicago, a restaurant owner is in turmoil after the city decided to revoke his license during a legal dispute about his restaurant.

The source of the conflict? A debate whether the venue was a restaurant or a nightclub.

The restaurant

Rashad Bailey is an entrepreneur who finally realized his restaurant dream last year when he opened Dinner and a Movie last year.

Dinner and a Movie was based in Chicago’s Lincoln Park, serving waffles, booze, movies and music.

According to the founder, the venue hosts class reunions and birthday parties to celebrate Black love and gatherings.

Read also: Off the Rails Restaurant Promotes Ludlow’s Local Scene to the World by Chef Andrew Molen

The complaints

Although Dinner and a Movie sounds like one of the best places in town, it has been the subject of complaints from neighbors.

Those who live near the property have reported noise coming from the restaurant.

Since Dinner and a Movie opened its doors to customers, it has been the scene of several fights.

In June 2021, a shootout erupted after a brawl broke out. Fortunately, no one was hit.


In the last week of July, the Department of Business and Consumer Protection issued the ultimatum to revoke Dinner and a Movie’s business license.

The decision comes after months of dispute in which the department said the restaurant operated more like a tavern.

It is also noted that Bailey took no action to address noise complaints.

Read also: A List of the Ten Best Restaurants in Portland

What Rashad Bailey had to say

Amid all the people complaining about the noise and violence in the restaurant, founder Rashad Bailey maintains that his business was targeted by police upon opening.

“This year, (during hearings with the city), I found out I had about 10 undercover officers in my restaurants within a week’s time of me opening with no incidents happening,” he revealed.

Bailey also said Chicago police would harass his restaurant, often showing up unannounced in large numbers.

A month after the shooting by Dinner and a Movie, a video clip saw police entering the restaurant.

However, Dinner and a Movie was closed during the incident.

Rashad Bailey pointed out that the Chicago Commercial Department began investigating the restaurant not too long after it opened – the reading being that the venue sold alcohol beyond its license.

At the time, the department denied Bailey’s restaurant privileges to serve lunch and operate after midnight.

Bailey also blamed the neighbors for closing Dinner and a Movie, saying they made false complaints because of the large Black customer base.

“This is racism,” Bailey said.

“They’re putting crime and the problems of the city on me. They see Black music, Black people, and they think that’s the problem.”

Meanwhile, Yelp reviews on Dinner and a Movie wrote that the restaurant only offered a limited menu, conducted security pats at the entrance, and charged an additional fee for coverage.

Rashad Bailey said that he was finished fighting town hall. He also decided he will leave Chicago.

“Because Dinner and a Movie was Black,” he said. “The Black birthday is a problem and some days, we are.”

“I told someone else, there are people out here in Chicago that shoot people and reb people, and they are savages and should be locked up.”

“Because hardworking Black people, we don’t want to deal with that, and they group us together,” Bailey added. “I don’t want to deal with that.”


Chicago man says city shut down his business, Dinner and a Movie, because he’s Black

Chicago man believes city shut his business down because he’s Black

Nicole Rokita Shares Why She Opened LA’s First Keto Restaurant

The keto diet has enjoyed an upsurge of popularity in recent years with the help of online communities and social media platforms. The keto diet is a low-carb, high-fat diet designed to lower blood sugar and insulin levels and shift the body’s metabolism toward fat and ketones instead of carbs. Like with any diet, many skeptics ask: does it work? Nicole Rokita, the proud owner of the niKETO Restaurant in Hollywood, gives a resounding yes.

The first all-keto restaurant in Hollywood, California, niKETO Restaurant is known for serving low-carb, gluten-free versions of everyone’s classic food favorites—from pizzas and burgers to desserts. The team at niKETO Restaurant, headed by founder Nicole Rokita, spent over three years developing the menu alone to ensure that it was perfect and satisfactory for their target demographic as well as unsuspecting taste testers who were getting their first bite of keto meals. The team enjoyed surprising people once they found out afterward that the meal they had thoroughly enjoyed was a healthy ketogenic meal.

Nicole Rokita is the mastermind behind the famous keto restaurant. As a model seeking a healthy, sustainable lifestyle, she eagerly embraced the keto lifestyle after she heard about its long list of health benefits and weight management advantages. Five years later, keto has become an important part of her lifestyle.

Her dedication to keto has brought out her passion for bringing delicious food that is surprisingly healthy as well. As the proud owner of niKETO Restaurant, she seeks to inspire others to join her on a journey that has been life-changing for her health.

“The concept of niKETO was influenced by the ketogenic diet, but the key to success for niKETO is much simpler: the goal is to create awareness about the positive effects that a low carb diet has on both your mind and your body,” she said.

Nicole Rokita has a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Chicago. Her decision to embark in the restaurant industry was spontaneous. It stemmed from her pure passion for the ketogenic diet. Though she was told that the restaurant industry is one of the toughest to succeed in, she persisted because of her keen entrepreneurial mindset.

Nicole designed the menu to be as low in carbohydrates as possible so that diners could still enjoy a great amount of flexibility when choosing the food items they would consume that day. The keto advocate believed this would be the safest way to ensure that her customers would not exceed their carbohydrate limit.

As a restaurant owner, she aims to create awareness of recent scientific research that disputes what the public has been taught in regard to the food pyramid. Nicole Rokita has a strong desire to educate the masses on how to truly eat healthily.

Nicole is currently expanding niKETO into an entire restaurant group that will operate several restaurants of varying cuisines but with the same mission: to keep the carbs low and the meals keto-friendly. Currently, niKETO is available only in Los Angeles, but Nicole Rokita has big plans to expand in major cities in the near future.

Check out the niKETO Restaurant on its website. Stay up-to-date with Nicole Rokita on her Instagram.