I’m old enough to know who Milton Berle is but too young to remember his act. I do know he was a comedian, acted in vaudeville and was the first superstar of TV, nicknamed “Mr. Television”. Quite the man about town, a cocktailer extraordinaire, Milton loved the ladies, the ponies and hanging out with boldface friends like Jimmy Durante, George Jessel, and Bing Crosby. Somewhere, somehow, my parents ran into him in New York… see the picture below on the right – that is Milton Berle, Phyllis and Howard (my parents). My father, Howard, is in a suit with skinny tie, my mother in an off the shoulder dress, Milton is partying once again. Were they all happy? Maybe. I’d like to think so.
I mention this because, in the day, when Milton Berle was in town, he used to frequent a Chicago nightclub called Chez Paree, which, like the Pump Room, was a place to see famous people. When you search for Chez Paree, you often find pictures of Milton living the life of luxury and glam at his Chicago downtown haunt.
Most of those places are gone, many are forgotten, but Chez Paree remains, still at 247 E. Ontario Street. Owned continuously by the Schatz family, Chez Paree has been re-invented for today’s more modern, and less formal, night life. Now it is an event space, renamed Chez. Gone are “The Adorables”, the women who danced through the night (the well known Chicago cosmetic entrepreneur, Marilyn Miglin being an early “Adorable”) but still Entertaining Company is bringing on the champagne and oysters for our partying clients.
Catering at Chez, we celebrate those that came to the party before us. We channel the energy of the city as well as the romance, excitement and free- wheeling party approach of those from the Chez Paree days. With a great chilled cocktail, we raise a toast to your party spirit. Uncle Miltie, you are not forgotten. We hope to be celebrating with you, in spirit, this holiday season and beyond at Chez~ that great downtown Chicago party place.
Here are a just a sampling of gorgeous photos by Amanda Hein Photography of the space and a beautiful tablescape created by our friends at Art of Imagination, featuring rental pieces from Tablescape Chicago Party Rentals and oversized balloons from Balloons by Tommy.