Expert Picks

Your Weekly Guide for What to Do, See, Eat, and Drink in Chicago: November 11–17

Photo by True Shot Studios/Courtesy of Christkindlmarket Chicago

This week in Chicago, gather for a night of emotional storytelling, celebrate the seasonal return of Christkindlmarket, shop at a book fair, and become a punch pro—just in time for holiday parties.

Photo courtesy of Volumes Bookcafe

November 13: Pour One Out: Mistakes, Thank You! 
Dr. Ada Cheng is the kind of storyteller who is not afraid to go “there,” and she is a master at creating spaces for other storytellers to tell their truths. Join Cheng and her crew for a night of naming and claiming what are commonly perceived as mistakes. Bring your tissues.
Tanuja Jagernauth, Theater

November 14: Straight to the Heart! Workshop/Open-Mic Night 
First of all, if you have not visited the National Cambodian Heritage Museum and Killing Fields Memorial, you should go. It is a must-visit for all Chicagoans. We need to learn about those whose lives were lost during the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia. At this open mic, Dr. Ada Cheng teams up with the resilient folks from the museum, and you are not going to want to miss it. Witness contemporary Cambodians demonstrating what healing from generational trauma looks like. Details: At National Cambodian Heritage Museum and Killing Fields Memorial
—Tanuja Jagernauth, Theater

Opens November 15: Visit the Christkindlmarket 
Hard to believe it’s already that time of year to spread joyous cheer, bundle up, and eat all the festive snacks at this annual market. Find giant pretzels for the kids and a boot of warm beverages for you, and explore the fun, German-inspired goods across the market. Details: Through December 24; free to attend
—Samantha Lande, Family Fun

Photo by Clayton Hauck/Courtesy of Punch House

November 15: “Untitled (Red Flame)” at Logan Center Gallery 
Oslo-based artist Camille Norment conducted several sound and vocal workshops with residents of the South Side on black cultural life, which she also recorded and edited. Listen to the results at her solo show—a chorus of voices that bear the passion and urgency of fire.
—Claire Voon, Art

November 15: Chicago Art Book Fair 2019 at Chicago Athletic Association 
It’s one of the best times of the year: The young Chicago fair featuring works by small press arts publishers returns for its third iteration. Find everything from hand-bound books, irreverent zines, and protest posters to comics and one-of-a-kind tote bags.
—Claire Voon, Art

November 16: Ari Shaffir: Jew at the Vic Theatre 
Veteran comic Shaffir has been referred to by L.A. Weekly as a “gifted, unyielding comic…a real force to be reckoned with.” He recently released a Netflix special called ​Double Negative,​ presented in two 45-minute episodes, in what he calls his version of a Smashing Pumpkins double album. Prior to that, he hosted three seasons of the Comedy Central storytelling show ​This Is Not Happening, a​s well as appeared as a regular guest on the network’s ​@midnight​. Details: 7 p.m.; $34
—Matty Ryan, Comedy

November 16: Punch Class at Punch House  
The holidays are nigh, so it’s time to refine your punch-making skills to prep for the imminent onslaught of parties and events. And what better place to learn the ropes than Punch House? The subterranean bar hosts a class designed to highlight the history and principles of punch, with plenty of know-how and techniques, as well. The class includes two glasses of punch. Details: 3–5 p.m.; $39
—Matt Kirouac, Food/Beverage

November 17: Bread Chat With Author Daniel Leader at Floriole Cafe & Bakery 
Calling all carb connoisseurs: One of the most iconic bread bakers in the country, Daniel Leader of Bread Alone in Woodstock, New York, is headed to Floriole to talk about all things flour; farm-fresh; and his new cookbook, Living Bread: Tradition and Innovation in Artisan Bread Making. There will be books available for purchase and samples provided by Floriole. Details: 4–6 p.m.; $10 for event or $40 for event with book
—Matt Kirouac, Food/Beverage

Photo courtesy of Ciccio Mio

Restaurant Opening of the Week: Ciccio Mio 
The most prolific restaurateur in Chicago strikes again, as Brendan Sodikoff has quietly replaced his Radio Anago space with this drop-dead-gorgeous Italian stunner. He sticks pretty close to his time-tested playbook in terms of dimly lit, decadent decor, but the food and drink menus serve to elevate Italian classics, from truffled pastas and rolled lasagna to black Manhattans.
—Matt Kirouac, Food/Beverage