It's been an interesting road for Enoch Simpson. The chef honed his diverse skills at multiple Chicago institutions, beginning as sous chef under Stephanie Izard at Scylla. When Izard landed on Top Chef, Simpson moved to Green Zebra. As Nightwood's sous chef, Simpson would come in early and make doughnuts, leading to "Enoch's doughnuts" (winner of a 2010 Time Out award,) before Izard recruited him as a sous chef for Girl and the Goat, where he learned butchering skills. All of this is converging at endgrain, opening early next month.
The 1,180 square-foot wood-furnished space (formerly Terragusto) is a result of his brother Caleb's carpentry, inspiring the double-entendre name: end grain in wood and end grain in an onion.
The food is new-American casual, featuring an all-day menu, a brunch menu, and rotating dinner specials. Sweet and savory combine, from Enoch's doughnuts and handmade pies to entrees like beef short rib pie and red kuri squash with charred endive and pickled chanterelles. At dinner, watch for a smoked-trout sandwich on marble rye biscuit. For libations, it's BYOB for now, with liquor coming soon.
Check out the menus below, and check out the handiwork upon visiting.