What's with all the Belgian-inspired joints popping up lately? Hopleaf is expanding, La Tache became Vincent (ok fine, it's Dutch, but it's pretty close) and now Relax Lounge is turning into Leopold.
The West Town spot, which was likely doomed from the beginning due to name conflicts (it was originally slated to be called the much-cooler Pharmacy) and a pesky next-door neighbor, Relax shuttered earlier this year (even having Top Chef alum Dale Levitski cooking on Thursday nights didn't help. The once-gorgeous space, designed and built by owner Brian Eldridge, is now in a state of disrepair as new owners, the folks behind Lincoln Park bar Witts, are turning it into Leopold.
The new eatery will have a Belgian focus, following a trip that owner Christy Agee and Chef Jeffrey Hedin (Green Zebra, Blue Water Grill) where they "had a great time experiencing the culture, cuisine and design." It'll be an interesting switch from the bar food (albeit, slightly more upscale bar food) at Witts. Look for the space to open in the coming weeks. Hopefully it'll be a nice addition to the continued development of that stretch of Chicago Avenue, that already includes Green Zebra, Mexique and West Town Tavern.
It Ain't Pretty Now ... [312DD]
Leopold [Photo: 312DD]