Why they killed it in 2015: A love of Korean cooking brought chefs and husband-wife duo Johnny Clark and Beverly Kim together initially, but it's their version of mung bean pancakes, threaded with black garlic, pineapple and pork belly, and nduja and gai-lan bibimbap that are bringing in the crowds and accolades. The Tasting Table New Originals were finalists for this year's James Beard Award for Best New Restaurant one year in at Parachute and enthusiastically awarded three stars by Chicago Tribune critic Phil Vettel just four months in. Clark and Kim are making Korean food, albeit sometimes mashed up with other cuisines, exciting again like the old Kogi truck days. And at the rate they're going, we bet the five-year mark is going to be epic.
How would you describe your food? Kim: "Korean American."
What's your signature dish? Kim: "Baked potato and scallion bing bread with sour cream butter."
What's the dish you would cook for the rest of your life? Kim: "Something funky and vegetal, like chungookjang, a fermented bean stew."
What are the three essential cookbooks on your shelf? "Kim: Bar Tartine: Techniques & Recipes, The Book of Kimchi and Relæ: A Book of Ideas. These books are great, because they have professional techniques and tools that I utilize at Parachute. I feel I'm challenged by these books, but these techniques are not too far-fetched and are still natural. The Book of Kimchi is great, because kimchi is the foundation of Korean cooking. It's out of print, so it's going online for like $500."
Favorite way to cook an egg? Kim: "Steamed Korean-style, mixed with anchovy stock and scallions."Next Chef