The long journey from underground "guestaurant" to kickstarter to BYO tasting menu restaurant has resulted in two Michelin Stars for Jake Bickelhaupt. The chef, who runs the 18-seat 42 Grams with his wife/GM Alexa Welsh, tweeted today that Michelin has indeed awarded his restaurant the rare distinction of two stars in its first year of eligibility.
Bickelhaupt, following stints in three of the best kitchens Chicago has ever seen (Charlie Trotter's, Alinea, Schwa), ran the underground dining club "Sous Rising" before launching his full restaurant in a former chicken joint in January. It truly hit the main stage when Amy Cavanaugh awarded it a rare five stars in a Time Out Chicago review later that month. The accolades continued for the rest of the year, including being nominated as Restaurant of the Year and Chef of the Year in this year's Eater Awards.
Curtis Duffy's Grace, which will move up to the penultimate three-star level in the 2015 guide, also debuted with two stars last year. Could 42 Grams get to that level too?