Since 1969, restaurant, hotel, travel & other witty reviews by a handpicked, worldwide team of discerning professionals—and your views, too.

News for Restaurants in Chicago
March 2010 Archive

Search / Openings / Closings / Chef Shuffle / News Bytes / Culinary Events / Wine Dinners / Sign up for our free, monthly newsletter / News Archive

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

The folks behind Tizi Melloul will be opening Pork Shoppe, a purportedly stylish spot capitalizing on the pork craze---albeit with a barbecue-bent, local-farm angle. Pork Shoppe, 2755 W. Belmont Ave., Chicago, IL 60618, 773-961-7654.
 
What was going to be the second installment of Nella Pizzeria Napoletana will, instead, be small-plates spot Davanti Enoteca when it opens in April. Carlucci's Luigi Negroni will be in the kitchen, and it's owned by Scott Harris (Mia Francesca). Davanti Enoteca, 200 E. Chestnut St., Chicago, IL 60611, 312-482-8800.
 
Calling all vegans: You've found another friend at Life on Mars, a carryout venture in Logan Square prepping design-your-own seitan sandwiches, rice of the day and plenty of salads and decent-sounding sides. Life on Mars, 2910 W. Armitage Ave., Chicago, IL 60647, 773-489-6277.
 
Here's a promising one---and not just for suburbanites: Isacco Kitchen from Isacco Vitali (ex-Charlie Trotter's). The food is a fusion of flavors---and not just Italian ones. There's a crab cake with jalapeño waffle, braised Kobe beef wrapped in herb pasta and deconstructed osso buco to spark your interest. Isacco Kitchen, 210 Cedar St., St. Charles, IL 60174, 630-444-0202.
 
Something---Benny's Prime Chop House, to be exact---is finally gearing up to open in the 444 N. Wabash Ave. space, where Jazz Record Mart once was. We suspect the name may be a bit deceiving, considering those involved. It's from Benny Siddu (Volare). Jonathan Lane (Seasons) is rumored to be the chef; Justin Leone (Alinea) is the sommelier; and Josh Kaplan (mk) is playing the dual role of general and beverage managers. Benny’s Prime Chop House, 444 N. Wabash Ave., Chicago, IL 60611, 312-626-2444.
 
You've got to hightail it to Gilt Bar, the casual-cool, modern day tavern from Brendan Sodikoff (formerly of Lettuce Entertain You, Thomas Keller and Alain Ducasse ventures). The early response is overwhelming, from the toasts topped with bone marrow and pickled onions or roasted garlic to the comforting, slow-cooked pot roast with cippolini onions. Oh, and the cocktails are killer. Gilt Bar, 230 W. Kinzie St., Chicago, IL 60654, 312-464-9544.
 
Roger Greenfield (of Bar Louie fame) has opened Primebar in the Loop. Hoping to earn an after-work following, it has a long list of drafts and swanky-fun bar bites, like beet "lollipops" with goat cheese dipping sauce and sriracha deviled eggs. Primebar, 155 N. Wacker Dr., Chicago, IL 60606, 312-884-0000.
 
Dean Zanella (ex-312 Chicago), along with Mia Francesca's Scott Harris, has opened Aldino's, his ode to Italian comfort food in the Little Italy neighborhood. Ray Stanis (Blackbird, avec, Osteria di Tramonto) is in the kitchen, turning out farm-focused dishes like pork shoulder braised in milk. There are daily specials, too, such as osso buco on Tuesdays. Aldino’s, 626 S. Racine Ave., Chicago, IL 60607, 312-226-9300.
 
Steven Song of now-closed Tsunami in the Gold Coast plans to open Masu Izakaya (a Japanese gastropub) serving small plates that are familiar but elevated. Look for noodles, rice dishes and yakitori with a twist. The wood-trimmed interior comes courtesy of Matt Lorenz, winner of Bravo's Top Design. Masu Izakaya, 1969 N. Halsted St., Chicago, IL 60614, No phone yet.
 


News Bytes
To Greener Pastures
Craig Charlton has sold Trattoria 225, the ambitious, cute Oak Park eatery in the Arts District. We'll see what changes ensue, though the menu is supposed to stay the same. Trattoria 225, 225 N. Harrison St., Oak Park, IL 60304, 708-358-8555.
 

Chef Shuffle

Austria-born Kurt Mittelberger (Hyatt Regency Chicago) is the new executive chef at Zest in the InterContinental Chicago. Zest, InterContinental Chicago, 505 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL 60611, 312-321-8766.
 
Greg Cannon (Ruth's Chris Steak House, Nia) is now handling the kitchen at Tapas Las Ramblas, where he's revamped the menu to include dishes like arugula and mint-accented grilled octopus with limoncello vinaigrette. Tapas Las Ramblas, 5101 N. Clark St., Chicago, IL 60640, 773-769-9700.
 
Former Top Chef contestant Radhika Desai is the new chef at Eat Well Drink Better venture English. English, 444 N. La Salle Blvd., Chicago, IL 60654, 312-222-6200.
 
Sommelier Justin Leone has left Alinea for Benny's Prime Chop House, which is expected to open in March at 444 N. Wabash St. Alinea, 1723 N. Halsted St., Chicago, IL 60614, 312-867-0110.
 


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.

Visually impressive, if somewhat confounding, Nozumi Japanese Cuisine has closed. Nozumi Japanese Cuisine, 100 W. Higgins Rd., South Barrington, IL 60010, No phone.
 
Kitsch'n River North is no more. It's just K-2, a counter-service café.
 
We're so sad to see A Mano, the venture from the Bin 36 crew, go. The good news is, Bin 36 got a totally tasty menu overhaul. A Mano, 335 N. Dearborn St., Chicago, IL 60654, No phone.
 

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

 

View archived news: November 2017 | September 2017 | August 2017 | July 2017 | June 2017 | May 2017 | April 2017 | March 2017 | February 2017 | November 2016 | October 2016 | September 2016 | August 2016 | July 2016 | June 2016 | May 2016 | April 2016 | March 2016 | February 2016 | January 2016 | December 2015 | November 2015 | October 2015 | September 2015 | August 2015 | July 2015 | June 2015 | May 2015 | April 2015 | March 2015 | February 2015 | January 2015 | December 2014 | November 2014 | October 2014 | September 2014 | August 2014 | July 2014 | June 2014 | May 2014 | April 2014 | March 2014 | February 2014 | January 2014 | December 2013 | November 2013 | October 2013 | September 2013 | August 2013 | July 2013 | June 2013 | May 2013 | April 2013 | March 2013 | February 2013 | January 2013 | December 2012 | November 2012 | October 2012 | September 2012 | August 2012 | July 2012 | June 2012 | May 2012 | April 2012 | March 2012 | February 2012 | January 2012 | December 2011 | November 2011 | October 2011 | September 2011 | August 2011 | July 2011 | June 2011 | May 2011 | April 2011 | March 2011 | February 2011 | January 2011 | December 2010 | November 2010 | October 2010 | September 2010 | August 2010 | July 2010 | June 2010 | May 2010 | April 2010 | March 2010 | February 2010 | January 2010 | December 2009 | November 2009 | October 2009 | September 2009 | August 2009 | July 2009 | June 2009 | May 2009 | April 2009 | March 2009 | February 2009 | January 2009 | December 2008 | November 2008 | October 2008 | September 2008 | August 2008 | July 2008 | June 2008 | May 2008 | April 2008 | March 2008

AMERICA'S TOP RESTAURANTS

Discover the best female chefs, top pizzerias and stellar seafood restaurants with GAYOT's Top 10 lists of the best restaurants in America.

MASTERS OF MIXOLOGYDiscover craft cocktail bars and restaurants that put as much thought into what goes in your glass as what goes on your plate.