—Former TWO and Big Star chef Tom Van Lente has overhauled the menus at White Oak Tavern & Inn during his first month on the job. Van Lente says that he and ownership are hoping to win the neighborhood back with more affordable, simpler, "approachable" bistro-style menus, where only two items (the burger and stracciatella) remain from former chef John Asbaty's regime. "We just want people to look at the menu and say, 'I know what this is, it looks delicious, and I want to eat that,'" Van Lente says. "We want people to feel comfortable." Read the new dinner and brunch menus below, where Van Lente estimates entrees are roughly $6-7 cheaper than the previous menus.
—The Asian restaurant replacement for Kokopelli in Wicker Park is open for business. B. Bim Asian Eatery opened to the public on Monday at 1324 N. Milwaukee, and while the full menu isn't available at press time, the restaurant's Facebook page describes the concept as "a fast casual Korean inspired restaurant, featuring fresh marinated proteins and marinated vegetables."
—Longtime Lincoln Park Italian restaurant Filippo's has shuttered after more than 22 years in business at 2211 N. Clybourn. A Facebook post hints at a "new business venture" for ownership in "the near future."
—Longtime Wicker Park sweet and savory baked goods and coffee purveyor Alliance Bakery is expanding into the former Banh Mi & Co space next door, DNAinfo reports. Expect a 30-40-seat Wi-Fi lounge to open "within the next few weeks" at 1736 W. Division St.
—Superdawg and Lake Effect Brewing are releasing the next beer in their popular collaborative series tomorrow, one that's inspired by the iconic hot dog stand's chocolate malt. SuperShake will get its first tapping on Dec. 10 at 6 p.m. at Fischman Liquors & Tavern (4780 N. Milwaukee Ave.) before becoming available at other bars and liquor stores, mostly on the Northwest Side.
—If you're curious about how the Chicago Firehouse rebuild is going after its fire nearly a year ago to the day, Sloopin checks in with an aerial photo of the building. There's no official word of any reopening timeframe but it appears to have a ways to go.