Elizabeth Madden, the founder of Rare Bird Preserves, started preserving fruit – and loving it -- while going to pastry school in France. Her preserves are an artisanal product, relying upon the fruits that come ripen across the seasons.
In John Drury’s classic Dining in Chicago, published in 1931, this early food journalist records his impressions of many old Chicago area restaurants. Drury also mentions three Oak Park dining establishments that seemed to be doing well in the Thirties despite the Great Depression. Perhaps, given the emphasis upon tea, Prohibition may actually have been good for these three village businesses.
Of Bent River camembert-style cheese, Lydia Burns of Marion Street Cheese Market says, there are a range of textures, from soft and creamy to almost chalky: “I like a mixture of textures: you get a more complex eating experience that way. It’s the best pasteurized camembert I’ve had in the states.”