Try out some new wines and wash them down with pizza at Frasca. (Barry Brecheisen/For RedEye )
Smelt Season Specials
Shaw's Crab House 21 E. Hubbard St. 312-527-2722
Around the Great Lakes region, springtime means smelt, and you can get your seasonal fix of the tiny, flour-and-cornmeal-dredged, fried Lake Erie fish served as an appetizer ($10), as a lunch or dinner entree with fries and coleslaw ($18) or as a sandwich with the aforementioned fries and slaw ($15) while supplies last. 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m.; 5:30-10 p.m.
'Baseball Cut' Steak
Socca 3301 N. Clark St. 773-248-1155
Celebrate the Cubs' new season with a one-night-only, $10 a la carte "baseball cut" top sirloin steak—so nicknamed because of its baseball-like shape. Round it out with $7-$12 side dishes including grilled broccoli rabe with gorgonzola and ricotta gnocchi with lemon beurre blanc. 5:30-10 p.m. Reservations required.
Frasca Pizzeria & Wine Bar 3358 N. Paulina Ave. 773-248-5222
D.O.C. Wine Bar 2602 N. Clark St. 773-883-5101
Stop in for complimentary samples of four to six new or rare wine varieties such as Italian vermentino and anise wine—the everyday malbecs and pinots stay on the shelves. Like what you try? Order a full glass for $8-$15. 6-9 p.m. Through Thursday. No cover.
Laugh Factory 3175 N. Broadway 773-327-3175
The former Chicagoan—who has appeared as the narrator in "Cloverfield," as a host on Comedy Central's "Mash Up" and as a roundtable panelist on "Chelsea Lately," among other film and TV credits—returns to town for a late-night stand-up set. 10 p.m. $17-$32 plus a two-drink minimum. Tickets: laughfactory.com.
(Free!) XYZ Series of New Works
Victory Gardens Theater 2433 N. Lincoln Ave. 773-784-8565
As part of About Face Theatre's annual exploration of plays about gender and sexuality, you can see staged readings of new works by prominent young playwrights including "Cast of Characters," by artistic associate Philip Dawkins ("The Homosexuals," "Failure: A Love Story") and "The Arvesto Parasite," a one-act comedy by South Coast Rep playwright in residence David Myers ("Muzungu"). 7:30 p.m.
REDEYE TIP OF THE DAY
Get tickets now for the Cochon 555 traveling culinary competition April 28: cochon555.com.
Julia Borcherts is a RedEye special contributor.