—Sweetgreen, the buzzy D.C.-based salad restaurant chain partly backed by Danny Meyer and David Chang, is not only opening its first Chicago location tomorrow in River North — it also has its second local location. Look for an outpost to open in early 2017 at 1000 W. Randolph St. in a new development, Crain's reports.
—The newest hotspot from Boka Restaurant Group is reportedly days away from opening. GT Prime, Boka and chef Giuseppe Tentori's meaty follow-up to GT Fish & Oyster, should open by the end of the month in River North, Chicago magazine reports. Much more to come on one of the most anticipated openings of the year.
—One gaming restaurant and bar chain is attempting to up its culinary game by signing on a celebrity chef. Denver-based Punch Bowl Social, which currently has one Chicagoland location in Schaumburg, has tapped "Top Chef" judge and restaurateur Hugh Acheson as its culinary director, according to a news release. Expect Acheson's menus to drop at all locations on Aug. 26. The release also mentions another Chicago location that's opening in September 2017, but a rep says they can't reveal the location yet. Stay tuned.
—In case you missed it, one of Rick Bayless' restaurants is opening in Miami. Red O, Bayless' "medium-end Mexican steakhouse" that currently exists in Southern California, is expanding to downtown there.
—A car crashed through the storefront of Logan Square Puerto Rican restaurant Jibaritos y Mas on Saturday night, according to multiple news reports. Nine people were hospitalized in the crash at 3400 W. Fullerton Ave. that was reportedly caused by a man who was driving without a license or insurance. There's no word if the restaurant, which just opened on April 1, was able to reopen.
—Early Society, the new-ish Loop cafe from Adolfo Garcia (Pearl Tavern, Barn & Co., Broken English Taco Pub), is hoping to start serving booze soon. The restaurant applied for liquor licenses for both inside and on the patio.
—Guest bartender series continue to be a popular route for bars to cross-promote in events and introduce its patrons to different talent and drinks. Two more are on tap at Chicago spots soon: RM Champagne Salon (a Monday series starting tonight with The 86 Co.'s Martim Smith-Mattsson), and a quarterly series at Arbella, launching Aug. 30 with GreenRiver.