For Valentine's Day, a remarkable shared kitchen space on the Northwest Side is showing some love to the neighborhood that helped keep it alive.
The Logan Square Kitchen is bringing in treats from across the city for its Valentine's Pastry Market, a weekend-long event showcasing some delicious and ingenious local delicacies.
LSK is a collective kitchen, a sort of incubator for small catering operations and similar projects that are trying to scale up but can't afford professional kitchen equipment and space. The Kitchen rents its space out to these kinds of businesses on an hourly basis. It's also LEED gold-certified for sustainability, using highly efficient fixtures, reclaimed materials, and generating zero waste.
But four months ago, owner Zina Murray was convinced the Kitchen would be out of business by now. Murray was fighting a maze of city red tape, sure that her business license would be revoked by a bureaucracy that seemed to be out to shut her down. The Kitchen fell into a gray area in the city's licensing laws, between restaurants and retail spaces, and Murray was stuck with a classification of "banquet hall" that carried demands she couldn't meet.
Her case, before the Zoning Board of Appeals, required three of four board members to side with her. Forty community members showed up to the obscure meeting, voicing their support, and Murray delivered over 250 letters backing her plan.
The Kitchen celebrated in December with its Christmas Market, and it's keeping the love alive for this Valentine's Day.
Tickets to the Market are $1, and sampler bites are ample. It will run on Saturday, February 12th and Sunday the 13th from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Logan Square Kitchen is located at 2333 N. Milwaukee Avenue (map).
Take a look at some of the delicious treats for sale at the Market this weekend! Photos courtesy of the respective vendors.