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Top Chef's Fabio Viviani Opening New Chicago Concept with Bull & Bear, Public House Team

Fabio Viviani, best known from his run on Top Chef season five as well as his return to Top Chef: All Stars, will open a restaurant in Chicago toward the end of the year or beginning of 2013. Viviani said he is teaming with David Rekhson and Luke Stoioff, who own Public House and Bull & Bear, to open a new concept in River North.

Viviani said they have secured a space, but couldn't yet release the exact location, and said of the concept that "I'm involved so it'll be fairly Italian," before offering a laugh. The Florence, Italy-born chef has other restaurants near Los Angeles so when asked why Chicago he said, "It's a great city. I've been a fan of Chicago before I was involved with any business. Chicago is getting to the point where New York was for restaurant business ... it's a great destination for fantastic food and food personalities."

Viviani added that some of his favorite chefs, like Stephanie Izard, Tony Mantuano and Rick Bayless, are all in Chicago and that he feels he can learn a lot from them and other chefs in town. As far as the food goes, it'll be straight forward, and you know he'll likely have his signature pillowy gnocchi on the menu. "I want to do simple food and some good stuff," he said. "I'm not planning to reinvent anything."

[Photo: Bravo TV]