Best Fine Dining Restaurant

Asian BBQ Pork Belly Nachos – recently received the Nation’s Restaurant News MenuMasters award in the category of “Menu Trendsetter.”

Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurants

2120 Southlake Mall, Suite 500

Merrillville, Ind.

219.795.9463

Modern, casual dining in an inviting atmosphere becomes an unforgettable experience when the best in fresh and creative cuisine is offered.

“Our goal is to make it fun and easy for people to learn more about wine and food, try new flavors and expand their palates,” says Tim McEnery, Cooper’s Hawk founder and CEO. “We’ve brought together some of the best talents in winemaking and the culinary arts to create inventive, flavorful food and wine pairings.”

The menu reflects an upscale offering in delightfully surprising and pleasing pairings.

At the same time, says McEnery, Cooper’s Hawk Restaurant wants to be approachable and affordable.

Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant in Merrillville, Ind.

SECOND PLACE

Gino’s Steakhouse

THIRD PLACE

Ciao Bella Ristorante

Link to original source

Cooper’s Hawk Opens in Merrillville, IN, Coming Soon to OH and MO

http://midwestwinepress.com/2012/08/22/coopers-hawk-opens-in-merrillville-ind/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=coopers-hawk-opens-in-

Cooper’s Hawk Opens in Merrillville, IN, Coming Soon to OH and MO

August 22, 2012 By Leave a Comment

Chicago based Cooper’s Hawk Winery and Restaurant opened its ninth location this month in Hobart (Merrillville) Indiana.   This year, Cooper’s Hawk also will be opening restaurants and wineries in Cincinnati, Columbus and Kansas City.   The Cooper’s Hawk concept of pairing proprietary wines with the restaurant’s menu was launched in Orland Park, Illinois in 2005.   Cooper’s Hawk now produces over 125,000 gallons of wine annually in its Countryside, Illinois facility outside Chicago making it the largest wine maker in Illinois, surpassing Blue Sky Winery in Makanda and Lynfred Winery in Roselle.  (Cooper’s Hawk founder Tim McEnerny once worked at Lynfred.)  The majority of grapes for Cooper’s Hawk wines come from California, Oregon and Washington.  Winemaker Rob Warren is a graduate of Brock’s Cool Climate and Viticulture Institute in Ontario, Canada.

During 2011, Crain’s Chicago Business reported that Cooper’s Hawk Restaurants cost $5 million each to open.  Crain’s placed Cooper’s Hawk’s 2011 sales at $50 million.

For more info about the Merrillville opening see Lake Michigan Shore: http://www.nwitimes.com/niche/shore/food-and-drink/cooper-s-hawk-winery-restaurant-debuts-in-northwest-indiana/article_5299093e-471c-5721-b102-a0e69e6177bb.html

RESTAURANT SCENE: Opening New Doors, Celebrating 38 Years and Taste of LaPorte

http://www.nwitimes.com/lifestyles/columnists/eloise-marie-valadez/restaurant-scene-opening-new-doors-celebrating-years-and-taste-of/article_7277ee22-dc6b-558a-bc5f-8006afcd7e06.html

Eloise Marie Valadez Eloise.Valadez@nwi.com, (219) 933-3365

Prepare to offer a toast to a new restaurant emerging on the scene. Cooper’s Hawk Winery and Restaurant opens Monday at Westfield Southlake Mall in Hobart.

The winery/restaurant is the brainchild of Tim McEnery, who opened his first Cooper’s Hawk in 2005 in Orland Park, Ill. The Northwest Indiana location is the company’s ninth winery. Other Cooper’s Hawks are located in Burr Ridge, Ill.; Wheeling, Ill.; South Barrington, Ill.; Indianapolis; and Brookfield, Wis. McEnery is preparing to open in Columbus, Ohio; Kansas City, Mo.; and Tampa, Fla.

A 38th anniversary celebration

Glenwood Oaks Rib & Chop House, 106 N. Main, Glenwood, Ill., is celebrating its 38th anniversary with a special promotion through August. Guests will receive 50 percent off all cocktails, excluding beer and wine, throughout the month. FYI: (708) 758-4400

Taste of LaPorte

The Taste of LaPorte will be held from 3 to 9 p.m. Saturday at the Greater LaPorte Chamber/Ludwig’s Parking Lot, 803 Washington St. Admission is free. Food will be available for purchase. Also in the spotlight will be a beer garden and live entertainment. FYI: michigancitylaporte.com

Food exhibit still on view

The Purdue University exhibit “To My Plate and Beyond,” presented by Purdue Extension, continues through Aug. 19 in the DuPont Food Pavilion at the Indiana State Fair in Indianapolis.

In the display, visitors will learn about the food groups that are part of a healthy diet as illustrated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The exhibit, created by Purdue Agricultural Communication Exhibit Design Center, is funded by the American Dairy Association and Indiana’s Dairy Farm Families.

National Rum Day

Spirit fans can celebrate National Rum Day on Thursday. Company Sailor Jerry has come up with a variety of cocktail suggestions to celebrate the national day. Sailor Jerry brand ambassador Paul Monahan suggests concocting cocktails such as Rowes Warf with rum, grapefruit juice, lime juice, angostura bitters, ginger beer and blackberry tea oleo syrup. FYI: sailorjerry.co

Cooper’s Hawk Lands in Northwest Indiana

http://www.nwitimes.com/business/local/cooper-s-hawk-lands-in-northwest-indiana/article_131ad1cc-6829-599f-99f7-94397f41004c.html

HOBART | Northwest Indiana’s culinary and libations landscape will soon be enlivened with a new addition.

Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant is set to open Aug. 13 at Westfield Southlake mall, bringing with it a varied menu of eclectic wines and innovative American-inspired dishes.

Tim McEnery, founder and CEO, said he’s happy to bring the restaurant concept he developed about a decade ago to Northwest Indiana.

“It turned out incredible,” said McEnery, about the Merrillville winery/restaurant. “It’s our newest, most state-of-the-art design.”

The first Cooper’s Hawk opened in 2005 in Orland Park, Ill., with other locations emerging almost every year since then.

“The concept is the same (in all the locations),” the founder said. They all are centered around a Napa-style tasting room; a large bar; a modern, casual American-inspired menu; a wine club and a retail store.

McEnery realizes the overall growth of his empire of winery/restaurants, which now totals nine, has been rather speedy. Sometimes he can’t believe it’s all come to fruition so quickly, he said.

“I do feel like it’s been fast and feel weathered sometimes,” he said, with a laugh.

“What I’m most proud of is working so hard to develop our team faster than we grow the restaurants,” he said.

McEnery, who grew up in Orland Park, has worn many hats in the culinary field through the years, including dishwasher, restaurant manager, chef, and wine expert. He earned a bachelor’s degree in restaurant and hotel management at Purdue University.

The entrepreneur, a Roselle, Ill., resident, said he’s immersed in all aspects of running Cooper’s Hawk.

“I’m  1,000 percent involved in it,” he said.

McEnery said he has come up with the wine program concept and oversees development of the menu. “I’m all over.”

All wines served at the restaurant are Cooper’s Hawk wines. And all dishes can be paired with a specific wine if guests would like to choose that option.

“We’re one of the largest wine producers outside of California,” he said.

McEnery’s idea for a business developed when he worked as a general manager at Green Garden Country Club in Frankfort, Ill.

“I always wanted to have a business of my own. I didn’t know it would be a winery,” McEnery said.

The concept for Cooper’s Hawk, he said, began as just an idea while he was on a date with his wife Dana, his then-girlfriend, nearly five years before the Orland Park business opened.

“Never in a million years did I think it would be what it is today,” he said. “It’s very surreal. But the best part is all the wonderful people I get to work with,” he said.

In addition to the Merrillville restaurant, other Cooper’s Hawk’s are located in Burr Ridge, Ill.; Wheeling, Ill.; South Barrington, Ill.; Indianapolis; and Brookfield, Wis. McEnery is preparing to open in Columbus, Ohio; Kansas City, Mo.; and Tampa, Fla.

Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant to Open August 13 at Westfield Southlake Mall in Merrillville

http://voices.yahoo.com/coopers-hawk-winery-restaurant-opnes-august-13-11626382.html?cat=22

Cindy Kurman, Yahoo! Contributor Network
Aug 1, 2012 “Share your voice on Yahoo! websites

Westfield Southlake Shopping Center will celebrate the grand opening of Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant on August 13, 2012. This new addition is the culmination of more than two years of major efforts to upgrade and revitalize the Northwest Indiana shopping center.

Westfield Southlake has been a community beacon in Northwest Indiana for more than 35 years, delivering a vast selection of stores, dining and event experiences to a 20 mile trade area including Illinois, Indiana and Michigan. Significant in-center improvements have taken place, culminating with the Cooper’s Hawk Grand Opening, in an effort to better serve the growing needs and desires of the area.

As the community has continued to grow and flourish with savvy shoppers from the Northwest Indiana area, Westfield Southlake has responded to its demands and in addition to Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant has opened 17 new stores and added new amenities. Shoppers will now enjoy upgraded seating, modern dining court areas and improved landscaping. “The Living Lake”, a one-of-a-kind play area for shoppers with children, offers an educational area for rest and relaxation while kids learn about the local lake ecosystem. The impressive list of new stores added to the roster include national brands such as Coach, Tevana, The Limited, and Skechers, Charming Charlie and locally known offerings including Albert’s Jewelers and AKIRA.

“The newly revitalized Westfield Southlake has evolved immensely,” said Peter Karonis, General Manager of Westfield Southlake. “We are proud to offer a center that gives our shoppers and resident retailers a much more enhanced shopping experience.”

Cooper’s Hawk Atmosphere Enriches Shoppers’ Experience

Cooper’s Hawk is the first and only combined restaurant and winery in the Midwest and was named “Hot Concept 2010″ Winner by Nation’s Restaurant News. “We’re very pleased that Cooper’s Hawk has chosen to become part of the Westfield Southlake family,” said Karonis, “It is an excellent, very popular restaurant concept that will certainly attract the many food lovers in our area, as well as our numerous wine aficionados. Cooper’s Hawk will be a joy for everyone.”

Cooper’s Hawk’s attractive winery atmosphere, complete with a tasting room, wine club and retail shop, is also a full-service restaurant serving a varied menu of delicious contemporary American cuisine. At Westfield Southlake, guests will be enveloped in warm hues as they are transported to a winery atmosphere that includes a Napa-style tasting room.

In the dining room, Cooper’s Hawk offers a modern, casual dining experience with professionally trained, inviting staff and a menu created with its handcrafted wines in mind. All of the dishes are paired with a wine, labeled on the menu by bin number, as suggested by the winemaker. Wines range from $13 to $39 a bottle and are also served by the glass. Guests will be treated to imaginative dishes that are rich in flavor. Entrées include chicken, seafood, pasta, pork and beef specialties, and lighter fare include a wide range of appetizers, salads and soups, specialty entrees and sandwiches.

In addition to offering a new dining experience for people in the Merrillville area, Cooper’s Hawk brings an estimated 125 new jobs, with opportunities for employees to advance through a training and development program that includes several levels of wine education. The training program eventually provides staff with the opportunity to become a wine professional.

Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant also has a Wine of the Month Club. Members receive a bottle of a Cooper’s Hawk new release wine each month, exclusive to Wine Club Members. The Cooper’s Hawk gift shop offers an assortment of gift baskets and wine-related accessories, many of which are also available for purchase online at www.chwinery.com.

Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant to Open August 13 at Westfield in Merrillville

http://homewood-flossmoor.patch.com/blog_posts/coopers-hawk-winery-restaurant-to-open-august-13-at-westfield-southlake-in-merrillville

Cindy Kurman

Westfield Southlake Shopping Center located at 2109 Southlake Mall in Merrillvill, IN will celebrate the grand opening of Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant on August 13, 2012.

Significant in-center improvements also have taken place, culminating with the Cooper’s Hawk Grand Opening, in an effort to better serve the growing needs and desires of the area.

As the community has continued to grow and flourish with shoppers from the Northwest Indiana area, Westfield Southlake has responded to its demands and in addition to Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant has opened 17 new stores and added new amenities. Shoppers will now enjoy upgraded seating, modern dining court areas and improved landscaping.

The impressive list of new stores added to the roster include national brands such as Coach, Tevana, The Limited, and Skechers, Charming Charlie and locally known offerings including Albert’s Jewelers and AKIRA.

Cooper’s Hawk is the first and only combined restaurant and winery in the Midwest and was named “Hot Concept 2010” Winner by Nation’s Restaurant News.

Its attractive winery atmosphere, complete with a tasting room, wine club and
retail shop, is also a full-service restaurant serving a menu of delicious contemporary American cuisine.

In the dining room, Cooper’s Hawk offers a modern, casual dining experience with
professionally trained, inviting staff and a menu created with its wines in mind. All of the dishes are paired with a wine, labeled on the menu by bin number, as suggested by the winemaker. Wines range from $13 to $39 a bottle and are also served by the glass. Guests will be treated to dishes that are rich in flavor. Entrées include chicken, seafood, pasta, pork and beef specialties, and lighter fare include a wide range of appetizers, salads and soups, specialty entrees and sandwiches.

Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant also has a Wine of the Month Club. Members receive a bottle of a Cooper’s Hawk new release wine each month,   exclusive to Wine Club Members. The Cooper’s Hawk gift shop offers an assortment of gift baskets and wine-related accessories, many of which are also available for purchase online at www.chwinery.com.

RESTAURANT SCENE: Cooper’s Hawk preparing to soar in NWI

http://www.nwitimes.com/lifestyles/columnists/eloise-marie-valadez/restaurant-scene-coopers-hawk-preparing-to-soar-in-nwi/article_db5ad3ab-9d62-5d62-afe5-c0129aab2532.html

By Eloise Marie Valadez Eloise.Valadez@nwi.com, (219) 933-3365

Get ready for the debut of Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant at Westfield Southlake Shopping Center in Hobart.

In February, we shared news of the upcoming opening in the region.

The restaurant, starring American cuisine, features its signature wines, a tasting room, retail shop and wine club.

Established by Tim McEnery in Orland Park, Ill., in 2005, Cooper’s Hawk has expanded to various cities throughout the last seven years.

Other Cooper’s Hawk locations include Burr Ridge, Ill.; Wheeling, Ill.; South Barrington, Ill.; Indianapolis; and Brookfield, Wis.

Coppers’ Hawk Merrrillville is scheduled to open Aug. 13. The company is currently seeking employees to staff the new business. To fill out an application, visit www.ccopershawkwinery.com.  Click on Join our Team and you’ll find application information. Positions currently open are server, host, bartender, tasting room attendant, houseworker, cook, and dishwasher.

The winery/restaurant makes more than 125,000 cases of wine annually. Its main production facility is in Countryside, Ill.

Polish Heritage Night

U.S. Cellular Field, home of the Chicago White Sox, will celebrate Polish Heritage Night July 3. During the celebration, MJ Polish Deli, of Hammond, will sell pierogis at the park. Half price tickets for the game are available on the Chicago White Sox website. FYI: www.whitesox.com/phn

Pizza on the grill

Chicago’s Home Run Inn’s executive chef Jeff Hursh has come up with a variety of creative ideas for pizza on the grill. The pizza company’s frozen pizzas, which are available at major grocery stores in the region, are easy to work with on a home grill.

“Start with a plain cheese, sausage or pepperoni pizza and show your creativity,” Hursh said.

Among his ideas? Create a Taco Pizza, with baked beans, shredded cheddar cheese, lettuce and tomato. For BLT Pizza, top with small bits of bacon, lettuce and tomatoes. Prefer Bruschetta Pizza? Sprinkle with chopped tomatoes, basil and Parmesan then drizzle with balsamic. Try your hand at a Gourmet Pizza with stir-fry caramelized onions and/or pear and gorgonzola. FYI: www.homeruninn.com

Gluttony Tour

The Glutton Force Five will present Gluttony Tour 2012, featuring  four of Chicago’s eating challenges over three days by  competitive eaters Gravy Brown and Patrick “Deep Dish” Bertoletti.

Competitions by the duo will be held at 7 p.m. June 29 at Fifty/50 Bar, 2047 W. Division St.; 2 p.m. on June 30 at Paddy Long’s, 1028 W. Diversey Parkway; 7 p.m. June 30 at Jake Melnick’s Corner Tap, 41 E. Superior; 2 p.m. July 1 at Lucky’s Wrigleyville, 3472 N. Clark St.; and 6 p.m. July 1 at Ultra Lounge, 2169 Milwaukee Ave., for after party. FYI: www.gluttonforcefive.com

The opinions expressed are solely the writer’s. Reach her at (219) 933-3365 or eloise.valadez@nwi.com.

Toast to Cooper’s Hawk and Chocolate

http://www.nwitimes.com/lifestyles/columnists/eloise-marie-valadez/toast-to-cooper-s-hawk-and-chocolate/article_8a718805-084a-5350-be39-4ba6fcad2a8e.html

By Eloise Marie Valadez Eloise.Valadez@nwi.com, (219) 933-3365

There are plans for an impressive new eatery in the region.

Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant will open in summer 2012 at Westfield Southlake Shopping Center in Hobart.

The restaurant, starring American cuisine, features its signature wines, a tasting room, retail shop and wine club.

Established by Tim McEnery in Orland Park, Ill., in 2005, Cooper’s Hawk has expanded to various cities throughout the last seven years.

Other Cooper’s Hawk locations include Burr Ridge, Ill.; Wheeling, Ill.; South Barrington, Ill.; Indianapolis; and Brookfield, Wis.

The winery/restaurant makes more than 125,000 cases of wine annually. Its main production facility is in Countryside, Ill. FYI: www.chwinery.com

For the Love of Chocolate

The aroma of chocolate will waft through Chicago’s Merchandise Mart on Feb. 25.

Whether your preference is sweet specialty drinks, tempting pastries, smooth candy or even entrees that are given the chocolate touch, there’ll be plenty to taste and admire at the “For the Love of Chocolate” event.

The party, from 7 to 11 p.m. at the Merchandise Mart, 222 Merchandise Mart Plaza, is the annual not-to-be-missed benefit for the French Pastry School’s scholarship foundation.

Chicago-area chefs and pastry experts will give their creations the cocoa treatment during the fundraiser.

Throughout the event, guests will travel from themed room to themed room sampling the wares of noted chefs. Food demos, musical entertainment and other activities will also be featured.

The French Pastry School, founded by chefs Jacquy Pfeiffer and Sebastien Canonne, is considered one of the acclaimed pastry institutions in the country.

The school’s first chocolate gala in 2006 was a benefit for Abigail Wodrich, daughter of Chesterton’s Third Coast Spice Cafe owners Lisa and David Wodrich. Proceeds from that benefit helped the Wodrich family pay for a kidney transplant for Abigail. The scholarship foundation was established in 2007. FYI: www.frenchpastryschool.com or www.fortheloveofchocolatefoundation.org

Valentine’s Day Dinner and Theater

The Drury Lane Theatre in Oakbrook Terrace, Ill., will present a special dinner/theater package Feb. 10 through 12 in conjunction with the production of the musical “Gypsy.”

The dinner package includes four courses and a beverage from the cocktail menu. Cost is $88 per person for Friday and Sunday meals and $89 on Saturday. Cost includes a ticket to “Gypsy.” FYI: (630) 530-8300

The opinions expressed are solely the writer’s. Reach her at (219) 933-3365 or eloise.valadez@nwi.com.

 

Southlake Mall attracts high-end restaurant, stores

http://triblocal.com/des-plaines/2012/02/09/parking-garage-restaurant-part-of-tif-6-redevelopment-deal/

By jenniferdelgado

A 1,900-car parking garage, national franchised restaurant and possibly a hotel are part of the new redevelopment deal for property near Mannheim and Higgins roads in Tax Increment Financing District 6, city officials said.

Des Plaines will sell the 4.9 acre site for $1.1 million to TPS Des Plaines, LLC, and stands to make $40 million through various parking, restaurant and hotel taxes by 2025. The city bought the property for about $10 million in 2005, said Finance Director Dorothy Wisniewski.

City officials said the purchase will pay the debt for the ailing TIF district, which is expected to hit a $5.9 million deficit by the end of the year. That amount could escalate to $19.7 million by 2025, when the TIF district expires.

Director of Community and Economic Development Mike Bartholomew said the land is currently valued at $5 million. He said the city is looking at the long-term picture and not the immediate financial loss. The development will push the TIF district out of the red, while also providing different sources of revenue for the city, he said.

“It’s a big benefit to the city,” Bartholomew said of the deal. “That’s sort of deceiving if you don’t take the long view of it.”

The five to six story garage will be mainly used as off-site parking for O’Hare International Airport. Des Plaines makes $1 per day per car parked in the O’Hare Corridor Privilege Tax Area, which covers TIF District 6.

Though a specific restaurant has not been chosen, the eatery will be a national franchise with a successful business plan, Bartholomew said. The plans call for one restaurant though there is a possibility two could be built, he added. The agreement lists over 50 permitted restaurants, including Cooper’s Hawk, Chipotle, Portillo’s and Five Guys Burgers.

The developers will likely wait a few years to see if the hotel industry has bounced back, but if a hotel is built, the city would generate hotel taxes, Bartholomew added. Under the deal, the city also retains the land underneath the billboard on the property, he said.

Hotels were slated to be built at the northeast corner of Mannheim and Higgins roads, just south of Interstate 90, but the deal fell through when the economy soured. Last April, the city received five proposals from developers looking to purchase the land and in July, the council gave the green light to negotiate with TPS Des Plaines.

At the Feb. 6 City Council meeting, Ald. Jim Brookman voted against the project, saying the request for proposal bid process doesn’t work and is not truly competitive. The only competition is the selection process, and then once a developer is chosen, the negotiations occur in private, he said.

He added he doesn’t want the city to use the request for proposal bid process in the future, because he wants the city to get the best financial deal.

The council voted 6-2 to approve the redevelopment deal. Ald. Mark Walsten also voted against it.

“It’s like going to a car dealer and saying, ‘I’m going to buy an Impala from you and no one else and let’s go and talk about terms,’” Brookman said. He claimed the council was never given updates during the negotiation process, though other aldermen refuted that.

In order to support the debt on the TIF, residents would see a 5 percent property tax increase for 2012, Wisniewski added. Bartholomew told the council it would take at least a year for the city to re-start the process and find a new developer.

During the discussion, resident Brian Burkross said he wished the city asked for more from the community and asked officials to wait on the deal. He pointed to the previous plan for the area and said developers spoke about their ideas without discussing prices.

“Remember, you are spending our own money,” he told the council. “I think we should have a right to have input to that process…I don’t see where that right was afforded in this particular case and that upsets me a bit.”

Ace Rent-A-Car currently sits on the site. Officials said the company was notified it must vacate the premises. Bartholomew said he hopes the developer breaks ground this spring.