Phil Tadros of Bow Truss coffee is expanding into a new venture—bringing craft cocktails to East Lakeview. Seeing an opening in the neighborhood cocktail scene, Tadros is working towards opening a bi-level oyster and cocktail bar in the former Adult Fantasy space on North Broadway in December or January. The project has two names: Oyster Pail and The Wilcox, which come from the invention of the Chinese takeout container in America by Chicagoan Frederick Weeks Wilcox in 1894 and described as a "paper oyster pail" in the New York Times.
"There's nowhere in East Lakeview or on Broadway to get a good cocktail," Tadros says. "The closest place is Barrelhouse Flat. We want to do what Violet Hour does with cocktails but with a relaxed atmosphere."
Tadros has already recruited Fat Rice bar manager Jason Brown to move to Oyster Pail and head the beverage program. Expect a selection of craft cocktails, old fashioneds, and more. Tadros says he's giving Brown "free reign to create a bigger bar program (than Fat Rice)."
Tadros calls the two-floor (ground and basement) space "very unusual." Adult Fantasy was a narrow storefront, encompassing 4000 square feet. Oyster Pail, on the ground floor, will serve a small menu of oysters, charcuterie, ham, cocktails, and sparkling and still wine. The Wilcox will hold 100 people, be downstairs, and serve a larger menu from a different entrance.
Calling the concept "really down to earth but with a high quality oyster bar," the location is just three doors down from the Lakeview Bow Truss. Both spots have the same landlord, who approached Tadros to take over the shuttered Adult Fantasy space. Now that Lakeview has a craft brewery and pub in DryHop, the neighborhood will also have craft cocktails around the end of the year.
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