Spring is that weird season that never seems to arrive, right before we are fully engrossed in the Chicago summer. There are a few days here and there of mild weather, but the charm of spring is so fleeting that you might miss it if you’re not looking carefully. Luckily, Beatrix {various locations} is bringing the season to life with new seasonal menu items. Chef Partner John Chiakulas and the Beatrix team are focusing on local flavors and ingredients to bring Chicago spring to life. Read on, and get ready to eat up!

Comeback Kid Cocktail

DiningOut: How does Beatrix keep their menu fresh season after season?

Chiakulas: We believe in seasonality in our menus. We want to serve the food at the peak of its season because it has the best flavor. For example, we add peaches to our salads in the summer because that is when they are at their best.

Cia Cereal Bowl

Do you work mostly with local farms/sources?
We try to use local farmers in the summer when produce is plentiful and farmers can supply us with enough product.

What are some flavors and ingredients we should all be using this spring and summer?
Everyone should be using heirloom tomatoes in the spring and summer seasons. They really add flavor to any dish.

Pink Ranger Cocktail

For your drink menu, it seems that lemon will be a popular flavor this season! Lemon is great in cocktails because it adds a citrus flavor that is great for spring and summer.

This is evident in some of our new cocktails like Pink Ranger made with Botanist gin, Aperol, lemon juice, and Angostura bitters; Comeback Kid with Rittenhouse rye, lemon juice, and passion fruit syrup; and Strawberry Basil Punnet made with Journeyman gin, honey syrup, grapefruit and lemon juices.

What menu items would you pair with these season cocktails?

Sea Bass

The Turmeric Rush would be great with our Supernatural Chopped Salad because of the honey, lemon, and peach flavors. The Ruby Soho and Pineapple-Habanero Margarita would pair great with our Quinoa Guacamole.

You also just opened a new location! What can we expect from the new Beatrix Market?

Well for starters, you can expect a great deep dish pizza that I think rivals any other in the city! Similar to the other locations, this second standalone Market has many healthful offerings on our hot and cold bars, a Beatrix coffee bar, a private dining room, and a full bar featuring cocktails, wine, and beer.

What are you looking forward to most for our spring in Chicago?
Besides warmer weather, I look forward to baseball, sunshine, and going to farmers markets. I also am excited to start planting in my garden.

Want to bring a bit of Beatrix home with you? Erik Palmerin from their team shared the recipe for the Comeback Kid cocktail with us. Make it for your next spring soiree!

Comeback Kid Cocktail

Recipe for Comeback Kid
In a mixing tin, add 3/4 ounce lemon juice, 3/4 ounce passion fruit syrup, 3/4 ounce simple syrup, 2 dashes mole bitters, and 2 ounces Rittenhouse Rye. Add ice and shake. Double strain into coupe, and garnish with a lemon peel and thyme sprig.