Tonight, after five months of slumber in River North, Rockit Bar & Grill relaunches with a new look and menu that coincides with the 10th birthday of the Hubbard Street barstaurant. Billy Dec and Rockit Ranch Productions, ever the publicity magnets, also made sure the reopening coincided with the influx of visitors in town for Monday's James Beard Foundation Awards.
Kevin Hickey (Duck Inn) revamped the menu, collaborating with longtime Rockit executive chef Amanda Downing to offer new items like crispy pork and broccoli (fried pork belly and Hook's five-year cheddar), the Abe Froman (named after the Sausage King of Chicago: Foot-long smoked beef and pork sausage with griddled onions, hot peppers and beer mustard on a poppy seed bun) and the Buffalo Joe (bison Sloppy Joe with ghost peppers on a New England roll). Drink-wise, Rockit will now serve 22 draft beers using a new draft system.
Interior designer Kara Mann handled the renovations, including encasing the elevator bank in brass. The club's been repainted with dark colors and there's a new 50-foot marble bar with a dual-facing counter so guests can face each other. The dining room features leather and banquette seating. There's also 11, 89-inch TVs and an LED light system that works with the DJ booth.
On Saturday, Rockit's hosting an event in conjunction with the Beard Foundation so boxing fans can watch the Manny Pacquiao vs. Floyd Mayweather fight. Details and tickets are available here. But in the meantime, check out the photos.