OK, the “extreme” element of yesterday’s S&B refers not to the actual soup, which was tasty and plentiful, nor to the blessedly balmy weather, but to the apocalyptic streetscape that is currently the entrance to the Hideout. The city is putting in new sewer lines, and then repaving Wabansia Street, adding curbs, sidewalks, and allegedly a couple of trees. Trees! Come summer we should have a nice new patio, but right now it’s a godawful mess out there. So, kudos to everyone — including Jenny’s gallant grandpa — who gingerly walked that bouncy gangplank to come and get their soup on. We won’t even talk about what happened before you got there, when the guys putting in the sewer tried to turn off our water. Hideout co-owner Mike Hinchsliff and I vigorously talked them out of that. But, it may have been inhospitable outside, but inside our soup cooks more than made up for it. Above, far left in her chefs whites, is Susan Goss, chef and owner of West Town Tavern — who brought the pro game with a wild mushroom chowder served with utterly ridonkulous blue cheese croutons. Whoa. Next to her, kinda hidden, are Grant from Hull-House, dishing up carrot-ginger soup left over from their Re-Thinking Soup lunch Tuesday, and a volunteer from Ravenswood Community Services, with a hearty chicken chili. On their left is Bonnie Tawse, with fantastic fennel soup with a swirl of parsley-caper-scallion puree. Next to her is Gillian McLennan, with a vegan curried-carrot-and-coconut-milk soup (our new fave!) and Julia McDonald, from Peasants’ Plot, with a rustic potato leek. And here’s the view from the other side of the room, which includes the lovely Erin Drain, but does not capture her sisters in wine, Jane Lopes and Rachel Driver, who together make up Team Lush. They brought three soups: Cajun shrimp, corn, and potato chowder; a sumptuous pork pozole; and our second potato-leek of the day. It was pretty cozy back there at the soup table – and it will be like that from here on out, as all the procrastinators are now trying to get in on the soup action – but it was oh-so delicious. Thanks so much to all, and to our most charming DJ Matt Fields. Through their collective efforts we raised $290 for Lakeview Pantry. Hooray! Watch this space for news on next week’s terrific line-up, benefitting the Heartland Alliance’s Marjorie Kovler Center for survivors of torture.