In September, The Gwen, A Luxury Collection Hotel, Chicago, took over The Conrad Hotel space inside the same building as The Shops At North Bridge —the downtown shopping center that counts Nordstrom as an anchor. Eight months later, The Gwen is revealing details on their revamped restaurant and rooftop terrace opening May 16. It's called Circa, and they'll serve burgers, chops and salads going for an "upscale" yet "approachable" space.
The drinks appear to be the focus, especially on the fifth-floor terrace, simply titled Upstairs At The Gwen. It's a 1930s theme, and staff will prepare cocktails table side. These "Prohibition Porters" must be booked in advanced. The nine cocktails cost $16 a piece, including the barrel-aged boulevardier (Woodford Reserve bourbon, sweet vermouth, Campari). Upstairs includes a trio of exclusive drinks including a frosty prosecco popsicle called the Poptail. There's also a large-format punch (Pama Pomegranate liqueur, Effen Dutch Raspberry, triple sec, fresh lime juice).
The food features a familiar combo of small plates, sandwiches and entrees. The gang at the Gwen seems high on the crispy chorizo fritters, skirt steak and burger (taleggio cheese, truffle aioli, short rib ragout, red onion jam on a potato bun). Check the full menu out below.