Eli’s Gets Sweet with the “For Love of Chocolate” Annual Gala


IMG_1618This past Saturday, Eli’s Cheesecake was proud to once again sponsor the annual gala for the “For the Love of Chocolate” Foundation.  The gala, which had a ’70s theme, featured over 100 of Chicago’s most dynamic entertainers, chef and innovators.  Eli’s served up “Psychedelic Blackberry Zabaglione” Cheesecakes to the attendees.

The For Love Of Chocolate Foundation provides scholarships for qualified students in the specialized training of the pastry arts. They awards scholarships to students in the full-time programs taught by The French Pastry School of Kennedy-King College.  If you would like to learn more about the foundation, please click here.

Eli’s Cheesecake Around Town

It’s been a big week for Eli’s Cheesecake around Chicago.  On Sunday, we rolled out the red carpet and served dessert at the Gene Siskel Film Center for the “Hollywood on State” 2015 Oscar award viewing. 

 On Tuesday, we served Eli’s Cheesecake on election night, we celebrated the success of Leadbelly Burger’s mash-up fundraiser for the Sunshine Activity Center, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to the development of life skills in persons with developmental disabilities.

Check awarded to the Sunshine Activity Center, a not-for-profit organization

Check awarded to the Sunshine Activity Center, a not-for-profit organization

Leadbelly Burgers created an Eli’s Cheesecake beignet made with Eli’s Cheesecake and Leadbelly’s fresh bread dough. Leadbelly Burger donated half of the proceeds from their beignet dessert sales to the Sunshine Activity Center and Eli’s Cheesecake matched their donation.


We also had the 94.7 WLS Radio Prize Patrol visit the Eli’s Cheesecake Bakery giving away CD’s, concert tickets, t-shirts, key chains and more. Then, it was off to election night to serve Eli’s Cheesecake while waiting for the results.

Wednesday night we celebrated The Chicago Help Initiative’s 15th anniversary of serving meals to those in need! Eli’s provided and served dinner and dessert by volunteers from The Eli’s Cheesecake Company.

Using our own recipes from our restaurant, we  prepared the following menu:

Eli’s Table Surprise – iced vegetable and pickle crudité
Roast tenderloin of beef with demi-gloss
Creamy potato and caramelized onion gratin
Sauté of carrot and green bean
Dressed warm spinach salad with crisp bacon, candied red onion and egg
Eli’s the Place bread basket -rye, fennel, soft roll, bagel chip
Anniversary cheesecake

Thursday night Eli’s Cheesecake and desserts will be served at the annual James Tyree Foundation benefit. 
The Foundation supports educational endeavors that foster creativity and innovation to improve the lives of people in the Chicagoland area. 

Looking ahead to the weekend, we will be at the Love of Chocolate event on Saturday and the 2nd annual Eli’s and O’Briens Irish Cheesecake Bake-Off to benefit Mercy Home for Boys & Girls  on Sunday, March 1st.  Stay tuned for photos and updates. It may be freezing in Chicago, but we are warming hearts around “my kind of town”!

Eli’s to Sponsor Streeterville Chamber of Commerce Annual Meeting

streeterville chamber of commerce logo

The Streeterville Chamber of Commerce Annual Meeting will be held in the Chicago Shakespeare Theater this Monday, March 2, at 5:30 PM.  The Annual Meeting serves to bring together the top leadership and membership of the Streeterville Chamber of Commerce to celebrate the installations of the new officers and directors and the accomplishments of the past year and launch new chamber initiatives.  Don Welsh, President and CEO of Choose Chicago, is the keynote speaker for this year’s meeting.  Eli’s Cheesecake is proud to sponsor this event.  If you would like to purchase tickets, click here.

Since 1989, The Streeterville Chamber of Commerce has been a non-for-profit organization committed to helping members build their businesses by increasing business visibility in the neighborhood. The Chamber works towards developing relationships with its members, as well as strengthening its bonds with other non-profit organizations in the area, in an effort to promote coalition building and partnerships among its businesses. 

Eli’s Cheesecake and LeadBelly Burgers Raise Funds for the Sunshine Activity Center

Last night, we celebrated the success of Leadbelly Burger’s mash-up fundraiser for the Sunshine Activity Center.  Leadbelly Burgers created an Eli’s Cheesecake beignet made with Eli’s Cheesecake and Leadbelly’s fresh bread dough.  Leadbelly Burger donated half of the proceeds from their beignet dessert sales to the Sunshine Activity Center and Eli’s Cheesecake matched their donation.   The highlight of the evening was an impromptu performance of ‘60’s music by members of the Sunshine Activity Center. The Sunshine Activity Center is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to the development of life skills in persons with developmental disabilities and accredited by CARF.

Check awarded to the Sunshine Activity Center, a not-for-profit organization

Check awarded to the Sunshine Activity Center, a not-for-profit organization


Celebrating the Oscars with the Gene Siskel Film Center

HollywoodOnStateLogoEli’s will be watching the The 87th Academy Awards® this Sunday, February 22, at the Gene Siskel Film Center of the School of the Art Institute in Chicago.  State Street will be turning into a Red Carpet extravaganza to host Chicago’s longest-running awards show viewing party, Hollywood on State: A Red Carpet Celebration. Dress in your finest Oscar garb and join us for glamour, gourmet food and libations, and watch the Academy Awards on the Film Center’s state-of-the-art big screens! The Eli’s Cheesecake Company is proud to be a sponsor for the event.  We will be serving desserts during the show, including mini Dippers, Vegan Cheesecake and more! Limited seating is available. Purchase your tickets here.


Kicking off Chicago Restaurant Week

FBB2015_SetupCRWToday is the first day of the 8th Annual Chicago Restaurant Week.  Organized each winter by Choose Chicago, the city’s official tourism organization, Chicago Restaurant Week gives visitors and local foodies an opportunity to enjoy specialty prix fixe menus from more than 250 participating Chicago restaurants. The culinary event kicked off last night at the celebratory sold-out First Bites Bash, held in the Grand Ballroom at Union Station.  Eli’s was joined by over 50 of Chicago’s most celebrated restaurants that handed out sweet and savory tastings from their menus. On our menu was Eli’s Original Plain Cheesecake with Strawberries and Salted Caramel Cheesecake. The Eli’s team also offered to-go boxes for guests so that everyone could bring home a piece of cheesecake to enjoy! Restaurants included Mercadito, Porkchop, Gibson’s, ZED 451 and South Water Kitchen.  Guests also enjoyed beer, wine, and cocktail pairings from Goose Island Beer Company, Terlato Wines International, CH Distillery, Crafthouse Cocktails, and Koval. Alpana Singh, Restaurateur & master sommelier, hosted this year’s event, from which a portion of the proceeds will benefit Inspiration Corporation. 

Laura and Sean Craig

Laura and Sean Craig


Over 250 restaurants in Chicago are participating in Restaurant Week, with special prix fixe menus. Eli’s Cheesecake is proud to be able to participate, for the first time ever, with a menu inspired by Eli’s the Place for Steak to commemorate our founder, Eli Schulman, and the restaurant where Eli’s Cheesecake was born! Our menu includes three courses: Chicken Matzo Ball Soup with Root Vegetables, Eli’s The Place for Steak’s Classic Roast Beef Sandwich with Grated Horseradish on Brioche and a slice of Honey Mediterranean Cheesecake with Pistachios and Almonds. Plus, each meal comes with a whole Cheesecake of your choice (9″ size) to take home!

For Chicago Restaurant Week 2015, a complete list of participating restaurants and the multi-course menu offerings are posted on Choose Chicago’s website.

This afternoon we welcomed our first reservation for Chicago Restaurant Week at Eli’s Cheesecake Bakery Cafe. Laura Craig and her husband, Sean, came by this afternoon to enjoy Eli’s special CRW offering.  Laura and Sean had visited our café for lunch and a tour on her birthday in 2008.  We were excited when they came back to visit us today and be our first CRW guests!

If you would like to join us for our Chicago Restaurant Week Menu or have any questions, call 773-205-3800 to make reservations (no required). Lunch is served Monday through Saturday from 11am-2pm.

Eli’s Cheesecake to Warm-Up Winter Bike to Work Day

WbtWd_flyer_web_400x550_logos_0Winter Bike to Work Day is returning to Daley Plaza, this time with treats! Enjoy Eli’s Cheesecake from 6:30 am – 9am on Friday, January 23 at Daley Plaza (50 W. Washington St.). Dark Matter Coffee will also be there, along with hot chocolate and tea for the bicyclists.

The 14th annual “celebration of cyclists who don’t let gloomy winter days or wind chill stop them from pedaling to work” will begin Friday morning, according to the Chicago-based Active Transportation Alliance. The event is the culmination of the first week-long “Roll The Cold Bike Challenge” organized by Active Transportation Alliance, an organization dedicated to safer and easier biking in Chicago. The alliance estimates 8,000 people use a bike to commute in Chicago during winter. DNAinfo previously asked some of these “winter warriors” for their tips braving the elements.

Bicyclists can also save $7 on the annual MB Financial Bank Bike the Drive held over Memorial Day Weekend by registering online at www.bikethedrive.org, beginning at 6:30 a.m. Friday.



Eli’s Proud to be part of the St. Patrick’s Day Parade Queen Contest

On Sunday, January 18th, the annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade Queen Contest took place.  Maureen Schulman, wife of Eli’s President Marc Schulman, was one of the 22 judges who whittled 65 contestants down to a queen and four others who will comprise the queen’s court. Maureen has been a long time judge for the event. Lauren Corry, a 28- year- old teacher at Edison Middle School in Wheaton, was named St. Patrick’s Day Parade queen. Her father is 100 percent Irish, with roots in Kilkee in County Clare. Her mother is mostly German with a bit of Dutch and Swiss, she said.

Lauren Corry, St. Patrick's Day Parade Queen 2015

Lauren Corry, St. Patrick’s Day Parade Queen 2015

“The women were all dressed up in green dresses and high heels,” said Jim Coyne, general chairman of the St. Patrick’s Day parade and business manager of Chicago Plumbers Local 130, which sponsors the parade.

“We’re very excited. She was in the queen’s court the last couple years and she’s a phenomenal young lady. I knowshe is going to represent us very well,” Coyne said.

Round one is a see- andbeseen experience in which contestants merely walk across a stage and smile. During round two, contestants introduce themselves and say why they want to be queen. Round three entails more eye contact, trying to look professional and showing judges you can walk in heels. Round four is kind of like speed dating, Corry said. “You meet as many judges as possible and leave an impression.” In round five, the five remaining contestants have more in- depth conversations with judges.

Prizes for the queen include two round- trip tickets to Ireland, about $ 1,500 in cash prizes, jewelry, Waterford crystal and Eli’s cheesecake, among other items.

About 500 people filled Plumbers Hall to watch the contest Sunday.

“The Queen Contest is a big party,” said Michele Scaccia- Coyne, marketing consultant for the parade.

The queen and her court will ride on a float at the March 14 parade and attend civic, neighborhood and Irish events on behalf of the parade committee.

It will be the 60th annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade sponsored by Plumbers Local 130. The union’s members are the ones who dye the Chicago River green.

Eli’s is excited to be able to host the Queen and her Court for our annual visit. More details coming!

Chicago Restaurant Week 2015 – Eli’s Cheesecake Participates First Time Ever!

CRW_2015Eli’s is excited to be participating in Chicago Restaurant Week for the first time this year! Chicago Restaurant Week begins January 30 and runs through February 12, 2015. The annual culinary celebration features special prix fixe menus starting at $22 for lunch and $33 and/or $44 for dinner (excluding beverages, tax and gratuity). Over 250 restaurants take part so get a taste of the city’s rich, culinary diversity: Italian, French, Spanish, Korean, Thai and more! Between the neighborhood favorites and downtown hotspots, you can feast on delicious multi-course menus all across the city and suburbs. Wondering how to get in on all the fun? Start your foodie adventure by browsing the list of Chicago Restaurant Week participants and their special lunch/dinner offerings. Then simply make your reservations between January 30 and February 12.

And to kick things off, get your tickets to First Bites Bash, an exclusive tasting event that previews sweet and savory creations from more than 50 of Chicago’s top chefs and restaurants, taking place January 29 at Union Station. Join us inside the magnificent Great Hall at Chicago Union Station, where you will enjoy savory and sweet tastings from over 50 of Chicago’s most celebrated chefs and restaurants. Restaurateur & master sommelier, Alpana Singh will host this year’s event, from which a portion of the proceeds will benefit Inspiration Corporation. Tickets are available now!

Don’t forget to enter the Instagram Contest, and tag Eli’s in the photo (@elischeesecake)! Below is the Eli’s Cheesecake prix fixe menu.


Eli’s Celebrates Founder’s Day & Eli Schulman’s Birthday

Eli Schulman, Founder

Eli Schulman, Founder

On January 22, 1910, our founder, Eli Schulman, was born.  An entrepreneur and restaurateur, Eli became a Chicago icon over the course of his life and continues to give back to his community through his namesake company today.

Eli’s Cheesecake was the dream of Chicago restaurateur and celebrity in his own right, Eli M. Schulman. Over his almost 50-year career, he developed a reputation for serving up great food, providing outstanding service and making every customer feel important. Representing the spirit of the city he loved, Eli was dedicated to helping the community. His motto “charity will never bust you” was exemplified during the great depression, by a sign hanging in his restaurant’s window “if you are hungry and have no money we will feed you for free.”

Eli opened his first restaurant, Eli’s Ogden Huddle, on Chicago’s West Side in 1940, after he found a foreclosure notice on the door of the local coffee shop that he regularly visited.  After only a year of operating the restaurant, Eli joined the Army Air Corps, utilizing his restaurant management skills at bases around the country.

Eli's Ogden Huddle

Eli’s Ogden Huddle

Eli continued his success with the opening of Eli’s Stage Delicatessen in 1962.  The delicatessen became a hot spot for visiting celebrities, including Frank Sinatra and Woody Allen, but Eli still wanted something greater.  In 1966, Schulman opened his pride and joy, a white-tablecloth restaurant named Eli’s The Place for Steak in the heart of downtown Chicago.  Schulman’s large host of celebrity friends followed in the move and at any given time, the restaurant was filled with stars of stage and screen.

Eli's The Place for Steak

Eli’s The Place for Steak

Today, Eli’s son, Marc, continues his father’s legacy and The Eli’s Cheesecake Company provides a wide variety of high quality desserts to eager mouths all over the world.  The company, like its founder, remains a Chicago icon, offering scholarships to students and sponsoring various events throughout the city.

In the next coming weeks, we will celebrate what would have been Eli’s 105th birthday by holding a special lunch for all of our employees as a token of our gratitude for all of their hard work. We will also be having special celebrations in the Bakery Cafe. For a full list of events, visit our calendar.

“To have come from where I came from, to have known the people I’ve known…I’d have to say that I’m the luckiest ma

n in the world.” – Eli Schulman