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Food & Drink

The Reel Thing

Give a girl a fish, and she’ll eat for a day.

But give her a fishing pole, and she may just blow the caviar world out of the water.

That’s what happened twenty years ago, when mother and daughter Carolyn and Rachel Collins began reeling in spawning salmon from Chicago’s great lake. Ever since, Collins Caviar has been mastering the art of North American caviar with homespun techniques. They specialize in infusions like fresh ginger root (the tastiest), gravlax (seasoned with dill, pepper, and lemon zest), and flavored vodka (saving that whole chaser-afterwards step). Local chefs (John Bubala of Thyme, Jon Manion of Mas, and Gilbert Langlois of Rushmore) love this stuff. And at only $8 to $38 an ounce (compared to $150 for imports), Collins Caviar may capsize the snooty Caspian crowd for good.

Just what you’d expect from two girls with hot rods.


Collins Caviar, 925 West Jackson Boulevard, at Sangamon Street (312-226-0342 or collinscaviar.com). By appointment only.