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Ghetto Gourmet (no, not Popeyes) Coming to Town

By Laura Oppenheimer in Food on Dec 12, 2006 6:15PM

Chicagoist always checks e-mail first thing in the morning. To us, email is the new teeth-brushing — something you have to do before you can move on to other parts of the day. Part of this morning ritual is seeing the Daily Candy e-mail in our inbox, trying to glean what it is about (please not another overpriced Bucktown boutique) and then promptly skipping over it. But today, we were intrigued, as the subject like read "Ghet it While it's Hot." What new boutique or swanky lounge opening could this be referring to?

2006_12_gg.jpgAs it turns out, Daily Candy is all excited about the Ghetto Gourmet coming to town, and so are we!

Ghetto Gourmet bills itself as "a wondering supperclub for lovers of fine cookin', cool art and new friends." The GG started in Oakland, CA, and has recently branched out, hitting NY last week and heading to Chicago at the end of December. It works like this: GG brings gourmet food to houses, courtyards, warehouses — wherever people are willing to host. You sign up online to come, bring your own booze (and own pillow to sit on), and are treated to a knock-out, gourmet meal. Also included is some type of art performance in the middle of the meal.

The idea for Ghetto Gourmet came from Jeremy Townsend and his chef brother, who wanted a causal atmosphere to enjoy gourmet food with their friends, without the pretension of restaurants. As Townsend explained to Time Magazine in a profile last month, "What if you could actually cuss and high-five people and lick the plate?" This is their goal: to create an environment where people are able to enjoy cutting edge cuisine, but don't have to drop several hundred dollars or feel intimidated. The Townsend brothers came up with the possibly inappropriate name to mean "fine dining versions of downhome cookin’ and vice versa." And their logo is a pirate, FYI.

To sign up for the December 22 Ghetto Gourmet dinner in Chicago (and check out the awesome-looking menu), click here.

Image of Ghetto Gourmet via