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Cleo’s Southern Cuisine in Bronzeville

Black History Month begins today, and I wanted to dig into a restaurant with Deep Southern roots, located in a South Side neighborhood with its own storied past. The menu traces its recipes to both Mississippi and Louisiana… partly a result of the Great Migration, and a granddaughter’s commitment to carrying on her family’s traditions. … Continued

Döner vs. Cag Kebab

Part 2 of my Turkish food exploration this week. Today I’m talking about döner vs. cağ kebab. The former is known around the world (aka gyros) as a vertical spit of lamb & beef. But few realize cağ was first – from Erzurum in Northeastern Turkey – as a horizontal stack of lamb only. Both … Continued

Eating Like a Local in Istanbul

Shortly after the devastating earthquakes in Turkey that killed some 50,000 people, I took a previously planned trip back to Istanbul I had been organizing for a few months. The area where the quakes were is about a two-hour flight from Istanbul, so I felt completely safe, but obviously there was a kind of PTSD … Continued

I’m Launching a Pizza Festival in Los Angeles

After almost a year of work (and dozens of slices), I’m excited to announce our second pizza festival, coming up in four months. Pizza City Fest: Los Angeles will bring together 40 of Southern California’s best pizzerias for a full weekend of pizza appreciation, education and giving back. Local pizza guru Noel Brohner and my … Continued

“Pizza City” Episode 1 (Chicago)

We’ve completed a pilot for a show we hope will get picked up by a streaming service, cable channel or broadcaster. We’re releasing the pilot (Episode 1) on the same day as “The Ultimate Chicago Pizza Guide” is published, to reemphasize there is more to Chicago than just deep-dish. Hope you enjoy it.