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News for Restaurants in Chicago
January 2010 Archive

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Read about the openings, closings, chef shuffle, and special events in Chicago here. Gayot's Restaurant News has the information you want on the local restaurants in Chicago.  

CHICAGO RESTAURANT NEWS

Openings

Shirley Garcia (The Goddess and Grocer) recently opened Nohea Café, which serves café-style fare---sandwiches, salads, coffee---along with grab-and-go gourmet items in Roscoe Village. Nohea CafĂ©, 2142 W. Roscoe St., Chicago, IL 60618, 773-935-7448.
 
Macku Chan (Mirai Sushi, Kaze, Heat) has teamed with brothers Kaze and Hari Chan to open Macku Sushi in the Lincoln Park neighborhood. Continuing the theme of serving not just the classics but also seasonally inspired toppings, it's filling the void left when Kaze closed. Macku Sushi, 2239 N. Clybourn Ave., Chicago, IL 60614, 773-880-8012.
 
David Shopiro's The Big Easy offers a taste of---you guessed it!---New Orleans in Hyde Park. The menu is a commingling of Southern-style barbecue, baked goods (beignets) and Creole and Cajun dishes like po' boys and jambalaya. Needless to say, that's a relief to those mourning the loss of Dixie Kitchen. The Big Easy, 1660 E. 55th St., Chicago, IL 60637, 773-643-5500.
 
Calling all bagel lovers: It's time to hit Bagels on Damen, a newcomer that has good slathers---um, truffle and toasted pine nut, anyone?---for them and sandwiches made with them. Plus, coffee comes courtesy of Portland roasters Stumptown Coffee Roasters. Bagels on Damen, 1252 N. Damen Ave., Chicago, IL 60622, 773-772-2243.
 
There was no big hullabaloo about the actual opening of The Purple Pig but, man, is it ever packed. The venture---a collaboration between Heaven on Seven's Jimmy Bannos, Bannos' son and Scott Harris of Mia Francesca---has diners nuts over more than just the charcuterie: pig's ear with crispy kale has brought many a foodie to near-tears. The Purple Pig, 500 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL 60611, 312-464-1744.
 
There were some rumors swirling about TRU opening a burger component, but it'll actually be a new Lettuce Entertain You launch next door. Rich Melman recently disclosed the fact that The M Burger, which will have a separate but adjacent kitchen born from part of TRU's, will focus on burgers and serve them in a counter-service setting. The M Burger, 676 N. St. Clair St., Chicago, IL 60611, No phone yet.
 
There have been a few notable openings in suburban La Grange of late, the latest being Prasino, a roomy spot along La Grange Road that's emphasizing sustainable, organic ingredients when possible. Most of the dishes---like line-caught tuna tartare with ponzu---sound fairly pedestrian, though that's not to say the beef short rib sandwich with roasted peppers and Fontina won't fare well. Prasino, 93 S. La Grange Rd., La Grange, IL 60525, 708-469-7058.
 
Lots of good stuff is going on at Cuna---from the lounge-y, happening scene to Kendal Duque's (ex-Sepia) menu of South American, Mediterranean, Asian, American and Italian shared plates. Our eyes are fixed on the braised lamb shoulder, green olives and caramelized onion flatbread. Cuna, 1113 W. Belmont Ave., Chicago, IL 60657, 312-224-8588.
 


News Bytes
Dough Dilemma
Uno Holding Corp.---the parent company of Pizzeria Uno or Pizzeria Due---filed for bankruptcy. But don't worry: there are no plans as of now to close any of the Chicago area restaurants. Pizzeria Uno, 29 E. Ohio St., Chicago, IL 60611, 312-321-1000.
 
Back on the Scene
After being destroyed by a fire a year ago, Macello has reopened with a similarly minded (though lower-priced) menu inspired by Giovanni DeNigris' youth in Puglia. Look for dishes like house-made cavatelli with chicory and fava purée. Macello, 1235 W. Lake St., Chicago, IL 60607, 312-850-9870.
 
A Missing Link
Jovan Trboyevic, the creator of Les Nomades and Le Perroquet, helped shape fine dining in Chicago. At the age of 89, he has passed away. Les Nomades, 222 E. Ontario St., Chicago, IL 60611, 312-649-9010.
 

Chef Shuffle

Check back soon for more news.


Closings

CLOSED FOR GOOD
Take your taste buds on a walk down memory lane! Check out our exclusive closed restaurant database for Chicago to virtually visit your favorite dining spots from yesteryear. The Dining Room, R.I.P.

Cary Taylor, exec chef of Chaise Lounge, has helped to re-concept Chaise Lounge. Its alter ego: The Southern, which serves everything from cheese straws with pecan butter to green tomatoes accompanied by chèvre, caper relish and lemon. Chaise Lounge, 1840 W. North Ave., Chicago, IL 60622, 773-342-1840.
 
Fianco has closed, and its chef---Matt Troost (ex-The Peninsula Chicago) is on the hunt for a job...via Twitter. Fianco, 3440 N. Southport Ave., Chicago, IL 60657, 773-327-6400.
 
Ian Schrager is taking over the Ambassador East Hotel and The Pump Room will be a casualty of bygone days. The Pump Room, Ambassador East Hotel, 1301 N. State Pkwy., Chicago, IL 60610, 312-266-0360.
 
Although the date has been pushed back to later this year, Fondue Stube is expected to close its doors in late 2010. Fondue Stube, 2717 W. Peterson Ave., Chicago, IL 60659, 773-784-2200.
 

CULINARY EVENTS
Want to
learn to cook? Try new dishes? Meet a foodie friend for fun? Check out our compilation of culinary events in your area.

View our calendar of Wine Dinners & Tastings in Chicago

 

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