We love Mindy Segal.

What’s not to love about a restaurateur with quotes attributed to her like this one?

Mindy Segal

Chef Mindy Segal of HotChocolate

“It would be difficult to be a conventional person and have this type of lifestyle. It’s tough. I have no life. I don’t date. It sucks sometimes. My life is my restaurant.”

With dedication like that to her craft — and, obviously, delicious food to show for it — it’s hard to believe she isn’t showered with awards on a daily basis. (We want to give her an award every time our tour rolls through HotChocolate for an iced hot chocolate topped with one of those massive house-made marshmallows…)

She was nominated for six “Outstanding Pastry Chef” James Beard Awards for her work at HotChocolate and never won — until this year, when she finally got her just…desserts? She was recognized at May’s Beard Awards ceremony at New York’s Lincoln Center; Eater actually called it the Susan Lucci year for all the deserving chefs who, at long last, got what they deserved.

But it’s been a crazy spring for Mindy Segal, and instead of flying to the Big Apple to party with the culinary illuminati, she and the rest of the HotChocolate team were hard at work here at home, giving the restaurant a facelift and creating a glorious new menu!

We just want to jump on the bandwagon and congratulate Chef Segal on her Beard win…and, more importantly, on the next step in HotChocolate’s evolution! (It’s pretty safe to say she’s not one to rest on her laurels.) We’ve had a blast showing our tour participants the new HC digs — and hope many will return to sample the new menu soon.

HotChocolate is definitely a crowd favorite on our Bucktown/Wicker Park food tasting and cultural walking tour — and you’re a biiiiiig part of that, Chef!



Photo: Share Our Strength

Chicago Food Planet offers a variety of awesome walking food tours in Chicago

Discover Chicago’s hottest foodie neighborhood as you nosh on cuisine from the master chefs that started a dining revolution. [Year-Round]

Tour Length3 Hours
Cost$60 Adult | $80 Adult VIP | $35 Youth
Tour Distance0.6 Miles
NeighborhoodsWest Loop

Savor Chinatown with a full immersion into the culinary & ethnic pageantry at five authentic, mouthwatering sit-down restaurants [Seasonal]

Tour Length3 hours
Cost$75 Adult | $90 Adult VIP | $40 Youth
Tour Distance1.3 Miles
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