Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Winning becomes Habit as Planet Canit, LLC. is Presented its 4th AmeriStar Packaging Award

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Aquiesse1 ETAward winning designs are becoming routine for Virginia Price, Owner and CEO of Planet Canit, LLC., as she received her 4th nod from The Institute of Packaging Professional's AmeriStar Package Awards on June 19th. Price and Planet Canit, LLC. received an AmeriStar Award in the Health and Beauty Aids category for their Aquiesse Candle Tin (photo right).
The prestigious AmeriStar Package Award Competition prides itself on showcasing the most cutting-edge, innovative packaging produced each year. AmeriStar Judges gave Price and Aquiesse President Michael Horn top marks for innovation, sustainability, protection, economics, performance and marketing. 
Award Presentation ETAquiesse, a leader in the home fragrance industry, offers a premium home fragrance collection with products sold in upscale department stores and specialty boutiques around the world. Horn sought to develop a unique item of beauty at a lower price point while still maintaining the brand's image and well known product value. Planet Canit, LLC. who has done work for major companies such as De Cecco pasta, Calvin Klein and illy coffee, provided the solution.
"Metal packaging provides a perception of quality, but at Planet Canit, LLC., we take it one step further. We design tins where the overall product pushes the capacity of metal to its limits creating a unique unforgettable product," says Price.
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Proficient in product branding through unique design metal packaging, Price provided the necessary aesthetic and technical expertise to make the production successful.
Planet Canit, LLC. contributed unparalleled tool making ingenuity, a strong knowledge of metal's inherent capabilities and their patented double-wall construction to the award winning design.
The Planet Canit, LLC. and Aquiesse design team considered everything from product protection, shelf impact and consumer convenience for this design.
The design features a double-walled construction; a seamless interior that effectively contains hot liquid wax and a seamed exterior which allows the metal to be moved into an irregular, embossed pattern of visual texture. Special tin-plate was selected to enhance visual design by creating a deep, metallic finish and glistening appearance. An embossed company logo and rope pattern of reversed metallic silver further complements the look.
Aquiesse_Matches ETFragrance and print inks can react when in close contact, so to eliminate this risk, a "plug" cover was created to ensure zero contact. For extra protection, all text on the interior of the tin is conveyed via a 3-leveled, detailed blind emboss completely eliminating the need for ink.
Not only concerned with product protection and shelf impact, this packaging is designed with the consumer in mind and is practical in use. The matches needed to light the candle are included with the packaging, housed in a match compartment within the lid of the tin. The lid itself also serves as a pedestal and protects the surfaces on which the candle is placed.
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This unique and eye catching vessel has also received praise in other spheres. When launched at its first gift show, it won Best Product in its category. The Aquiesse candle tin was also featured in Beauty Packaging's December issue in the article Home Fragrances Luxe Treatment.
As an AmeriStar Winner, the Aquiesse Candle Tin qualifies for entry into the WorldStar International Packaging Competition which includes submissions of all forms of packaging from 33 countries. Price, who won a WorldStar award in 2008, is optimistic about her submission.
Planet Canit, LLC.'s Beyond the Box® tag line couldn't be more fitting. This company truly goes beyond the box with its cutting-edge, innovative designs and continues to produce award worthy packaging for a variety of industries, including but not limited to confections, health and beauty, fragrance, tea and coffee, bakery, entertainment, apparel and gifts.
About Planet Canit, LLC.
Planet Canit, LLC. is the marketing solutions company that helps maverick marketers differentiate their products from the pack to drive exponential sales growth. Based in Highland Park, IL, Planet Canit, LLC. does not believe in canned, one-size-fits-all solutions. Instead they invest extraordinary time and resources into understanding the client's needs, their brands' competitive realities and sentiments of the end consumer so that they can create customized packaging solutions. From its products and services to their people and perspective, Planet Canit, LLC. succeeds by acting and doing things differently - Beyond the Box®.
For more information visit or
Woman Business

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Chicago French Market - Wednesday, July 31 Lunch Hour Music - Dean Milano

Wednesday, July 31 Lunch Hour Music – Dean Milano
11 a.m. to 2 p.m.  Complimentary
If you missed Dean Milano earlier this month, or if you just wanted to hear his music again, today is your lucky day. Come listen from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday, July 31 at the Chicago French Market.

Singer and songwriter Dean Milano engages in storytelling through his preferred medium, music. Having mastered many styles of music, Milano effortlessly moves between the musical genres of folk, country, rock, ballads, bluegrass and pop.  He spent four years touring with The New Seekers and has been the opening act for the Spencer Davis Group, Bo Diddley, The Kingston Trio in addition to many others.  Come listen from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday, July 11 at the Chicago French Market.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Chicago French Market - Wisma's Homemade Jarred Items


Wisma is now featuring Chef and Owner John des Rosier’s homemade jarred items perfect for your kitchen, barbeques and picnics $5 to $7. 

Strawberry Rhubarb Preserves, Strawberry Preserves and Raspberry Preserves are now available for purchase. His San Marzano Tomato Sauce and Tomato Vodka Sauce also are available.  

Want to add big flavor to your sandwiches and grill this season? Chef des Rosier has you covered with Louisiana Barbeque Sauce and Spicy Giardiniera, sure crowd pleasers for any back yard barbecue. Don’t forget the Spicy Beer Mustard, delicious with pretzels or on your brats.
Pick up some Tomatillo Salsa, Homemade Tortilla Chips and Wisma’s wine and beer sippie cups all ideal for any picnic.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Chicago French Market - Pastoral Artisan Cheese, Bread & Wine's Grab n' Go Sandwiches and Baguettes

Pastoral Artisan Cheese, Bread & Wine

With summer in full swing, there's nothing nicer on a hot Chicago day than an ice cold beer. Pastoral is featuring an expanded rotating selection of craft beers this July. 

Hungry but in a hurry for your evening commute?  Stop by Pastoral and pick up a freshly made Grab n' Go sandwich. These are perfect for the Metra ride home. Running Late? Plan ahead. You can pre-order your made-to-order pastoral sandwiches by calling or ordering on-line.

Pastoral is known for its fabulous selection of imported cheese. Why not pick up a variety, enjoy a fresh baguette, and a great bottle of wine – the perfect addition to any meal.

Attending Wicker Park Fest this weekend, visit Ready Coffee and ORNOT Gallery

Artist Kenrick McFarlane show opens at ORNOT 
Gallery Saturday.
Planning to attend Wicker Park Fest this weekend (Saturday, July 28 and Sunday, July 29) on Milwaukee between Paulina and North Ave?  Make sure to stop by just opened Ready Coffee (1562 N. Milwaukee Ave) – the virtual “green room” for the North Stage where you can cool off, refuel and relax before enjoying the live music. READY Coffee has opened with customer buzz about its high quality, locally roasted coffees and unbeatable prices,” says Jacqueline Runice of

Just in time for the Fest, Ready will be opening its ORNOTGallery. Make sure to stop in to meet local Jamaican-American artist Kenrick McFarlane and enjoy some coffee, nibbles and art. The opening begins at 6 p.m. Saturday.

About Wicker Park Fest:
What began as a neighborhood get together has turned into one of Chicago’s best festivals attracting locally celebrated musical acts, restaurants, vendors and artists. Check out the Wicker Park Fest schedule here.

Or, see what’s happening in front of Ready Coffee at the North Stage:

Saturday, July 27th
Walkie Talkies @ 2:20 pm
Pet Lions @ 3:25 pm
Santah @ 4:30 pm
Kid Karate @ 5:20 pm
Delicate Steve @ 6:40pm
Bahamas @ 7:45pm
Man Man @ 9:00pm

Sunday, July 28th
Meat Wave @ 2:20 pm
Secret Colours @ 3:25 pm
Creepy Band @ 4:30 pm
Treasure Fleet @ 5:35 pm
Fly Golden Eagle  @ 6:40 pm
Reigning Sound @ 7:45 pm
Roky Erickson @ 9:00pm

And, please don’t forget to like Ready Coffee and ORNOT Gallery on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Friday, July 26, 2013

ORNOT Gallery Opening this Saturday featuring local Jamaican-American Artist Kenrick McFarlane

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Ready... ORNOT
New Gallery Opens with Local Jamaican-American Artist Kenrick McFarlane 
Show opens Saturday, July 7 - Runs through September 30
 Kendrick ETThe "ORNOT" Gallery (located within READY Coffee, 1562 N Milwaukee Avenue Chicago, IL 60622, 773-360-7041) opens with its first show 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday, July 27, showcasing the works of promising local Jamaican-American artist, Kenrick McFarlane. The show runs through September 30.The show is being curated by Cody Davis, a READY Coffee barista, photographer and manager of the ORNOT Gallery.

Still in his early twenties (born in 1990) and with plans to graduate from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago (BFA, 2014), McFarlane has already built an impressive résumé, having his works featured at exhibitions,  public and private galleries and publications while earning the respect of other artists.

His works have been featured at numerous galleries including the Little Black Pearl Art Center and Gene Siskel Film Center, and have been published in several publications including a feature article in HAS Magazine, "Welcome to Kenrick McFarlane's Twisted Reality." His work also was shown at the international Expo Chicago 2012 in Chicago (2012 / Eclectic Coherence / Curated by Dawoud Bey).

gilbert ETIn the summer of 2010, McFarlane worked as a studio assistant under famed Chicago artist Hebru Brantley. Brantley has become one of several high profile artists or collectors to own pieces by McFarlane. Other owners include Patric McCoy and Bill Savage of Diasporal Rhythm, collectors or contemporary art by African-American artists.

McFarlane has donated his works to River North Dance Chicago¬ and the Golden Apple Foundation.
Such success at a young age can be attributed not only to his talent, but also his philosophy as an artist. "In the world there are many kinds of verbal languages. There are also a variety of visual languages. Within my practice, I'm trying to find paintings that are engaging to make and have a unique pictorial language," says McFarlane.

About ORNOT Gallery
READY Coffee brings to the Bucktown-Wicker Park area of Chicago a new space to feature local artists whose passion often involves controversial, poignant, and social statements.

"We are looking to be a real player in the Chicago art scene," said READY Coffee's owner, Adam Banks. "We're used to coffee shops hanging art up on the walls as a secondary attempt to 'be local', but we are focused on being local in the best sense of the word.  We are looking to really support local artists and we're not afraid of pushing the edge."

To further showcase artwork, READY Coffee has an Art-o-Mat machine, a uniquely refurbished vintage cigarette vending machine that has been converted to sell small pieces of art wrapped in cigarette boxes. The art sells for only $5. "The Art-O-Mat is the coolest machine that I have ever seen," said Banks. "There is one in the National Portrait Gallery (a Smithsonian Museum) and it's really a beautiful piece of art in and of itself." Anyone interested in providing art objects for READY's Art-o-Mat should call the store at (773) 360-7041.

Like ORNOT Gallery on Facebook at and follow on Twitter at Interested artists should contact Cody at

About Cody Davis, curator
Cody Davis is a READY Coffee barista and manager of the ORNOT Gallery. A native of rural Arkansas, he moved to Chicago to study at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and to escape the oppression of living in the south as a gay man. A photographer  whose work is displayed at READY Coffee, his work has evolved to include in various media. 

We would love for you and a guest to attend 
this Saturday's opening at 6 p.m., July 27
Please join the team at ORNOT Gallery and READY Coffee 
as well as Artist Kenrick McFarlane 
for a lovely evening of art, nibbles and 
Certified Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee. 
Please RSVP to
ORNOT Gallery
1562 N. Milwaukee Avenue
 Chicago's Bucktown-Wicker Park Neighborhood
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Ready Coffee on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Chicago French Market - Lavazza Espression's Signature Blendissimo®.

Lavazza Espression

Lavazza Espression is introducing the Signature Blendissimo®. The Blendissimo®, an extraordinary blend of fresh ingredients made with passion, is available in 3 flavors. $4.85-$5.45.


Salty Caramel Blendissimo®
The natural peanut flavor complemented by the decadence of caramel blended with vanilla gelato, espresso, and ice.
Strawberry & Marshmallow Blendissimo®
The natural flavor of fresh strawberry combined with the playfulness of marshmallow blended with vanilla gelato, espresso, and ice.
Banana & Chocolate Blendissimo®
The natural flavor of fresh banana and the pleasure of chocolate are blended with vanilla gelato, espresso, and ice.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Chicago French Market - Thursday, July 25 Lunch Hour Music – Annalee

 Thursday, July 25 Lunch Hour Music – Annalee
11 a.m. to 2 p.m.  Complimentary

Annalee, who is a market favorite, captivates audiences with her jazz infused music. She has a modern interpretation of Jazz, Blues and R&B that still remains true to each style’s classical roots. Annalee’s work attracts audiences of all ages with its effortless balance of old and new. Annalee comes to the Chicago French Market from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursday July 25. You won’t want to miss this performance, make sure to stop by and enjoy the sound.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Chicago French Market - Saigon Sisters Chicken Curry Banh Mi and T-racha Hot Awesome Sauce

Saigon Sisters
Saigon Sisters has introduced Chicken Curry Banh Mi to its menu. Curry lovers rejoice. This dish combines grilled lemongrass chicken, curry mayo, pickled red onions, mint, cucumber, cilantro, pickled daikon, carrots, and jalapenos.

If you’re planning to attend an outdoor concert in the park, grab Saigon Sisters quick and delicious banh mi, specialty drinks, and snacks before you hit the road.  Saigon Sisters is conveniently open until 7 p.m.

Saigon Sister’s T-racha Hot Awesome Sauce is now available for $7. This sauce has been featured and recognized by the Tasting Table and Chicago Tribune as the “hot sauce” to take home. 

Friday, July 19, 2013

Chicago French Market - Delightful Pastries Rainbow Macarons and Picnic Baskets

Delightful Pastries Specials

Picnic Baskets are now available for order. Devour a sampler tray of Delightful Pastries’ lunch favorites, The Polish, The Thanksgiving and The 3 Piggly Wiggly Sandwiches. The basket comes complete with side dishes of homemade pickles and pickled onions, and 3 cups of homemade beverages, your choice of freshly squeezed lemonade, unsweetened iced tea or an Arnold Palmer.  A box of macarons and a bag of heavenly cookies, choice of flour-less chocolate pebbles, granola cookies or molasses ginger cookies, also are included. Picnic baskets serve three or more for $50.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Chicago French Market is in the August issue of Cosmopolitan!


Chicago French Market earns it's place in the Four-Star Food Courts list!
Congrats to our very own Cindy Kurman for getting the photo credit of the French Market!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Wednesday, July 17 Lunch Hour Music – Erich McMann

11 a.m. to 2 p.m.  Complimentary
The Bartlett, Illinois native, Erich McMann has always been drawn to country music. His musical career has been greatly influenced by the work of Hank Williams Sr., Buck Owens, and Merle Haggard. After years of traveling and performing all across the country, with several bands and projects; McMann has moved back to Chicago to work full-time as a musician. Come hear this talented musician during your lunch hour, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. July 17.


Chicago Gourmets turns 16 and Oceanique turns 25 - Join the Celebration July 23 at Oceanique

Now here's a reason to celebrate...
Chicago Gourmets, the highly regarded gourmet dining club, is turning 16. They've joined forces with Oceanique, the acclaimed French-American seafood-focused restaurant in Evanston, also celebrating an anniversary, its 25th, for a delicious degustation event not to be missed, 6 p.m., Tuesday, July 23. The cost is $89 for Chicago Gourmets members; $99 for non-members.
"It is a befitting celebration," says Don Newcomb, Chicago Gourmets' founder. "We're honored and humbled by the enthusiasm that we've had during the past 16 years. When Chef/Owner Mark Grosz approached us to help Oceanique celebrate its 25th, we jumped at the chance." 
Oceanique (505 Main St., Evanston, 847-864-3435), ranked as the number one seafood restaurant in the Chicago area by Zagat Guide, is a well respected and admired restaurant. Oceanique serves the finest organic produce and seafood purchased solely from sustainable ecofriendly sources. Their commitment to excellent service and cuisine has garnered Oceanique recognition by some of the country's most respected publications. They have won Wine Spectator Magazine's coveted "Best of Award of Excellence" every year since 1993. This year, Wine Spectator recognized Oceanique as having one of the 750 best wine lists in the world. Even with this acclaim, guests find the knowledgeable wine service at Oceanique to be refreshingly gracious and down to earth.
Oceanique is entering the next quarter century with big changes. "This will be the first event showcasing our new look and new menu," says Grosz. Oceanique closed June 30 for a complete makeover, and is scheduled to reopening in late July with an expanded small plates menu, new bar area with craft cocktails and beers, alongside their Wine Spectator award-winning wine list, modern degustation menu and a totally fresh new look.
This Chicago Gourmets event features a specially prepared menu containing new dishes masterfully crafted and executed by Oceanique's Chef/Owner, Mark Grosz. In addition the menu will be complemented by a special wine selection, chosen by Wine Director Philippe André, from Oceanique's extensive wine list featuring over 700 selections.
The Menu for the Chicago Gourmets' 16th Anniversary Celebration includes:
Virginia Misty Point OystersSpinach  Pernod  Parmesan
2007 Royal Tokaji Wine Co. Furmint - Mad, Hungary
Wild Maine Diver ScallopsLobster-Soy Broth  Kimchi  Cilantro
2012 Terranoble Sauvignon Blanc, Central Valley, Chile
Citrus-Sorrel Sorbet
Wild Delaware SkateFennel  English Peas  Purple Potatoes, Porto
2004 Gaudon - Rioja, Spain
Valrhona Chocolate Marjolaine10 Year Mas Amiel - Maury, France
This private look at the new Oceanique celebrates the continued excellence of Chicago Gourmets and their ability to provide members with novel, fresh and one-of-a-kind culinary experiences.
For reservations or additional information visit or call (708) 383-7543. Reservations are secured on a first-come basis. Events often sell out early!
About Chicago GourmetsThis 16th anniversary celebration on July 23 at 6 P.M. will continue Chicago gourmets' success in providing members and guests with unique dining experiences at Chicagolands most captivating establishments. Their private group events feature showcase menus and signature dishes prepared by the top chefs from restaurants all over the area. Chicago Gourmets leaves no menu un-tasted and takes advantage of Chicago's culinary diversity by sampling all different types of cuisine.
Chicago Gourmets provides members with an inside look into Chicago's hottest new eateries through their special invitations and special "behind the scenes" tours. Membership provides food connoisseurs the chance to preview food trends in addition to opportunities to meet culinary legends, outstanding cookbook authors, wine experts and restaurateurs. For more information on how to become a member, visit the membership section on our website For any additional questions email or call 847-571-1499.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Chicago French Market - Klay Oven Kitchen Loyalty Card

Klay Oven Kitchen
Become a fan! Klay Oven Kitchen has introduced a new loyalty program for its faithful customers.  The next time you stop by the booth, pick up a loyalty card and start checking off your meals. Once you have purchased 12 meals, the 13th is on Klay Oven Kitchen.  

Friday, July 12, 2013

Celebrate Bastille Day a day early at the Chicago French Market Saturday

Enjoy the 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. cooking demonstration by Le Bouchon’s legendary French Head Chef Jean Claude Poilevey and son, Sous Chef Oliver Poilevey.  A recent inductee to The Culinary Academy of France, Chef Poilevey strives for authenticity in his delicate and romantic French bistro. In honor of Bastille Day, Chef Jean Claude and Chef Oliver will demo classic French dishes.

1 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. - Sarah Young Trio (Jazz)

Sarah Young was a semifinalist in the Thelonious Monk vocal competition in 2010, and won first prize in the Shure Montreux Jazz Voice competition in 2011. Come experience her breath-taking voice with this diverse trio comprised of piano, upright bass and vocals. Enjoy the Free Bubbly Tasting as they perform Jazz, Latin, Swing and Dance Standards with French embellishments and feel. 

For those who don’t know, on July 14, 1789, the people of Paris raided the Bastille fortress-prison to demonstrate their independence and the uprising of the modern nation. This iconic moment in French history, marked the beginning of the French Revolution. Centuries later, Bastille Day has become a worldwide celebration, with parades and festivals held around the globe to honor French culture.

Chicago French Market - Bowl Square is now K-Kitchen

Effective July 1, Bowl Square is changing its name to K-Kitchen.  The menu will retain all customer favorites adding an expanded and changing seasonal menu options. Come celebrate the launch and treat yourself to July specials Green Rice Bowl or Bibimbap (as it is called in Korea).  The Green Rice Bowl includes rice infused with more than eight seasonal vegetables in a Korean Red Sauce.  Personalize your bowl by adding beef or chicken (no up-charge!).

Thursday, July 11, 2013

TODAY at the Chicago French Market

4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Pastoral Artisan Cheese, Bread & Wine will be hosting their monthly tasting.  This month’s tasting will be featuring a diverse array of craft beers that are perfect for summer fun.

Rush Hour Music – Dean Milano

4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Complimentary

Singer and songwriter Dean Milano engages in storytelling through his preferred medium, music. Having mastered many styles of music, Milano effortlessly moves between the musical genres of folk, country, rock, ballads, bluegrass and pop.  He spent four years touring with The New Seekers and has been the opening act for the Spencer Davis Group, Bo Diddley, The Kingston Trio in addition to many others.  Come listen from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday, July 11 at the Chicago French Market.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Chicago French Market - Bello Tea July Specials

Start your weekday morning 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. with a daily selected hot tea special for $2/$2.50. Stop by 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday for a complimentary Bubble Tea Sampling. GLUTEN FREE and VEGAN options are available. 

Have you tried Matcha?  Many people have reported great energy boosting effects from this fine powder green tea.  Try this amazing product morning or afternoon for a pick-me-up. Dragging mid-day? Bello Tea offers Matcha Shots for $2.00 each from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. just to help you beat the afternoon slump. 

Bello Tea also is offering a 10% discount for online purchases this month. Purchase your Bello Tea favorites from their extensive selection of close to 100 teas and accessories.  Just don’t forget to enter the code JULY10 for this summer discount.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

READY Coffee, New Indy Coffee Shop in Wicker Park, Starts the Final War in the Quality Coffee Game – the Price War

READY Coffee, a new independent coffee shop at 1562 Milwaukee Avenue in Chicago’s Wicker Park (773-360-7041;, has opened with enthusiastic customer buzz about its high quality, locally roasted coffees, and unbeatable prices.

While the mood is informal and creative, the owners demonstrate that they are serious about challenging the coffee world with a refreshing take on coffee shops. “We are fully committed to offering customers a quality experience at down-to-earth prices,” said owner Adam Banks, a recent MBA graduate of the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, who wrote his senior business plan on squaring off with the coffee industry at low prices. This research plays out in the logical $1, $2, and $3 drink menu.

“The last frontier in the coffee world has to be price; cups of coffee are now normally higher than a gallon of gas,” said Banks. “We’re offering truly outstanding coffee, roasted daily in Chicago, at prices that make sense. Our house brew starts with a “buck cup” for $1.”

All of the READY Coffee blends are roasted locally by legendary Chicago coffee roaster Greg Stivers. “With 28 years of artistry under his belt, a roasting facility in Pilsen, and his ability to roast to our specifications daily, we can guarantee an ultra-premium cup of coffee.” Banks said.
READY Coffee is an instant success among the locals for the shop’s price, quality and unique offerings. It is a vibrant local hangout and is spacious, with enough room to accommodate more customers than most coffee shops. It has a clean, contemporary feel, a great art collection, and serves excellent coffee beverages, pastries, sandwiches, soups and other homemade goodies.

John Grbac and Banks developed the READY Coffee concept. Grbac is a noted Chicago restaurateur who was one of the first in Bucktown/Wicker Park with Jimo’s, and one of the first to energize the neighborhood, leading to its resurgence. “We are obsessive about our quality,” said Grbac. “I have been in the business many years and we can give people what they want, a great cup of joe at a great price. Starbucks just announced a 10% across-the-board price increase. That level of pricing just doesn’t make sense,” said Grbac.

“There is a war going on in the ultra-premium sector of coffee, we are seeing $7 coffees on menus – and you have to wait in line to get that cup of coffee.   We built ready on the concept that there is a large percent of the public that just wants a quality cup at a great price.  Ready is just that, quality and price, no pretense, and no waiting,” explains Banks.

The better-than-reasonable prices start with READY’s one-dollar “Buck Cup”, a 12 oz. cup of premium drip coffee made from the 100% Arabica house blend. Larger cups of drip coffee are served for $2 (16 oz.). An additional shot of espresso can be added to the drip coffee for $1.
In another nod to quality, all iced coffee beverages are made to order and served with coffee ice cubes, which enhance the richness of the brew rather than diluting it. Drip iced coffee is $3 for 12 oz. and $3.50 for 16 oz. 

For coffee aficionados, READY Coffee also offers ten global all-Arabica coffee blends from Greg Stivers that can be used for pour-overs (single cups of coffee made using special drip filters). 12 oz. pour-overs are $2.50; 16 oz. cups are $3. READY serves its pour-overs either hot or iced (using coffee ice cubes). These exquisite small batch blends can also be purchased by the pound as whole beans or freshly ground to order. 

The smooth but wonderfully intense espresso-based beverages are made with Greg Stivers small batch roast espresso; all start with double shots. The espresso menu is refreshingly straightforward: A double shot espresso or Americano is $2. Flat whites, cappuccinos and lattes are priced at $3 for 12 oz. and $3.50 for 16 oz. An extra shot of espresso in any espresso beverage is $1. READY Coffee also presents a variety of natural flavor syrups, which can be added to any coffee drink for fifty cents. 

There is more to the READY Coffee story than coffee. Food items also reflect READY Coffee’s emphasis on serving the best at good prices. All food items are made for READY Coffee by some of Chicago’s finest bakers. READY is the first wholesale customer of Dinkel’s donuts, which are made with no GMO flour. “We are thrilled to carry Dinkel’s doughnuts—we love that we are selling the best doughnuts in town,” exclaims Grbac. “Dinkel’s has been baking for 80 years, and for good reason.” READY Coffee’s delicious croissants, brownies, pastries and sandwiches are from Delightful Pastries.

READY Coffee also serves free filtered still and sparkling water. Customers who want to add a shot of natural flavor syrup to a glass of sparkling water can enjoy having a house-made Italian soda for $2.

READY Coffee also is serious about making customers comfortable and relaxed inside its spacious
walls. Every smooth, white-topped table has its own AC power nearby; READY has installed super high-speed internet in order to make web-browsing fast and reliable. The tables are easily moved around to form two-tops, four-tops or more. There also is a community table for larger groups. Customers are encouraged to stay, enjoy a respite, meet friends or do work at their leisure.

To further showcase artwork, READY Coffee has an Art-o-Mat machine, a uniquely refurbished vintage cigarette vending machine that has been converted to sell small pieces of art wrapped in cigarette boxes. The art sells for only $5. “The Art-O-Mat is the coolest machine that I have ever seen,” said Banks. “There is one in the National Portrait Gallery (a Smithsonian Museum) and it’s really a beautiful piece of art in and of itself.” Anyone interested in providing art objects for READY’s Art-o-Mat should call the store at (773) 360-7041.

READY Coffee, located at 1562 N. Milwaukee Avenue in Chicago, is open from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. every day. For more information, call (773) 360-7041 or visit the website at, like them at and follow them on Twitter @ReadyCoffee.