Women-Owned Chicago Area Restaurants Celebrate Women’s Equality – August 26-August 31

Kale Apple Salad at Prairie Grass Cafe
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With all the publicity aimed at noting 100 years since women received the vote, Chef Sarah Stegner has joined with several women chefs and restaurateurs to encourage people to support women-owned restaurants. Dubbed “Women’s Restaurant Week” and presented by Let’s Talk and supported by the Illinois Restaurant Association, Choose Chicago and the James Beard Foundation, the 6-day event appropriately kicks off on “Women’s Equality Day,” Wednesday, August 26 and runs through August 31. 

Sarah Stegner, co-chef/co-owner, Prairie Grass Cafe in Northbrook. photo credit: Cindy Kurman

In addition to Sarah Stegner (Prairie Grass Cafe, Northbrook), other chefs and restaurateurs include: Beverly Kim (Parachute, Wherewithall), Carrie Nahabedian (Brindille); Danielle Dang (HaiSous);  Amy & Clodagh Lawless (The Dearborn), Sandra Holl (Floriole), and Rohini Dey (Vermilion), JBF trustee and Let’s Talk founder. A full list of Let’s Talk members is below with more women joining daily.

Carrie Nahabedian, Brindille

Chef Stegner says she will be offering pre-ordered meals to go throughout the week. The offer will change daily and will feature a protein with sustainable produce from Nichols Farm & Orchard, Three Sisters Garden and Mick Klug Farm, for curbside pickup. Stegner is a founder of Green City Market and a long-time supporter of sustainable, local food.
“The idea came out of a Let’s Talk group zoom call with women chefs involved in the James Beard Foundation,” said Stegner, a two-time James Beard Award winner. “It was smart to band together to face the COVID19 challenges, learn from each other and encourage customers to support our women-owned restaurants,” she said. 

Amy and Clodagh Lawless

Women’s Restaurant Week is led by the Chicago JBF “Let’s Talk” Forum to which seventeen Chicago area women restaurateurs belong. Their purpose is to support each other and survive this crisis together. 

Beverly Kim

Women’s Restaurant Week is open to all women-owned restaurants, bakers, and food-related and beverage businesses. Each business will offer a special dine-in meal, product for sale, delivery, or pick up offer to showcase their business to Chicagoland.

Rohini Dey

About Prairie Grass Cafe and Sarah Stegner
Prairie Grass Cafe offers expand takeout menus and homemade restaurant meal kits with curbside pickup to meet the COVID-19 challenge. The restaurant also has opened an outdoor tented cafe, offers fresh sustainable raw fish packages on Mondays for home cooking, 50% off bottles of wine, a Kid’s Kitchen Crew Pizza Kit, and Zoom cooking classes. 
Sarah hosts a daily cooking tips hotline (847-920-8437) between 2-4 pm that has been widely received. The restaurant also serves as a drop-off point for several area farms. With the support of customers, Prairie Grass Cafe has provided meals to several area hospital essential workers, homeless shelters and works with the community to support friends who can’t leave their home.

Sarah is also the co-founder of National Eat Local Day, September 22, with publicist  Cindy Kurman, created to encourage restaurateurs and chefs to provide at least one totally locally sourced menu item. Their hope is to raise awareness of the importance of supporting our local sustainable farms and to increase the flow of local sustainable food to our tables across the country in order to protect our farm lands and ensure their success so future generations have access.

Sandra Holl

Partial list of Women’s Restaurant Week Participants:

·         Mary Aregoni (Saigon Sisters)

·         Deann Bayless (Frontera Group)

·         Dana Cree (Pretty Cool Ice Cream)

·         Danielle Dang (HaSous​)

·         Diana Davila (Mi Tocaya)

·         Rohini Dey (Vermilion), JBF trustee and Let’s Talk founder

·         Sophie Evanoff (Vanille Patisserie)

·         Theresa Ging (Sugar Bliss Cakes)

·         Mindy Gohr (Bittersweet)

·         Sandra Holl (Floriole)

·         Beverly Kim (ParachuteWherewithall)

·         Amy & Clodagh Lawless (The Dearborn)​

·         Kristen Barnhisel & Cynthia Lohr (J. Lohr Vineyards and Wines​)

·         Julia Momose (Kumiko)

·         Carrie Nahabedian (Brindille)

·         Laurence Noguier (Bistronomic​)

·         Agnes Rapacz (TeaGschwendner​)

·         Tigist Reda (Demera Chicago)

·         Julia Shell & Sarah Syman (The Dandy Crown​)

·         Sarah Stegner (Prairie Grass Cafe)

Visit the Women’s Restaurant Week website for updates and offers: https://www.choosechicago.com/event/womens-restaurant-week/

Photos: Courtesy of Kurman Communications

Call 847-205-4433 for Prairie Grass Cafe Reservations and Orders
(phones open at 10 a.m.)

Have cooking questions? Call Sarah’s Cooking Hotline
Daily between 2 pm and 4 p.m.


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