John Manion, the owner/chef of La Sirena Clandestina, has waited nearly two years to open his follow-up, El Che Bar, in the West Loop. The project is nearly here, as reservations are live with the first available date being Aug. 1 via OpenTable. A news release also details some of the Argentinian-inspired menu items Manion and his staff will serve, with many prepared over a wood-fire grill.
Highlighted items include cherry bomb peppers (soubise, egg yolk, lemon crumb); gnocchi (brodo, tomato, zucchini, chimichurri, parmeasan); and a thin-cut pork chop (plums, hot mustard, peanut-pork rind crumble). La Sirena Clandestina's pastry chef, Marianna Reynolds, will handle desserts.
Wine drinkers can reduce their carbon footprint by sampling the wine list curated by sommelier Alexis Chabert. Reps say 95 percent of the list is green, and they'll focus on small-production wines. Bill Anderson (Vie) is head bartender, and his drinks will complement the hearth cooking and focus on cachaça, mezcal and pisco.
There's about 100 seats in the dining area, with 14 seats at the bar. Irony will be when diners Uber to and from the restaurant, which occupies the former Checker Cab Co. building at 845 W. Washington Blvd. Check back for more.