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Inside River West’s New Burger Spot From Piccolo Sogno

Maillard Tavern opens on Thursday with black truffle pesto burgers

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A Maillard Tavern burger.
Barry Brecheisen

The Piccolo Sogno team opens up Maillard Tavern, a new burger, beer, and milkshake spot on Thursday afternoon at 494 N. Milwaukee Avenue. The space from partners Tony Priolo and Ciro Longobardo has only been home to a billboard for many years, but on Thursday the location will open up as a tribute to all things browned. The restaurant sits at the corner of Grand/Halsted/Milwaukee, neighboring Emmit’s Irish Pub, The Dawson, Richard’s Tavern, and Piccolo Sogno.

Piccolo Sogno, of course, is the acclaimed River West Italian restaurant that opened in 2008. The restaurant is a longtime member of the Eater Chicago 38. They also run Nonnina, a more-casual spot in River North. Their third restaurant, Maillard Tavern, is one of the city’s most-anticipated opening of the winter.

The restaurant is small, with three booths, a smattering of four-tops and two-tops, and 12 seats at the bar. But for the neighborhood, which doesn’t have any burger joints, the space feels cozy — just right for a place to stop in and enjoy a burger and a milkshake.

The burgers are fried on a steam-injected gas griddle, according to the Tribune. They’ll stuff buns with two 4-ounce patties rather than one 8-ounce burger. That way customers can get double the crust from Maillard reaction, which is where the restaurant gets its name from.

Selections include “The Classic” with traditional toppings to more out-of-the-box creations like the “City Slicker” with foie gras, black truffle pesto, prosciutto, and foie gras mayo. The restaurant will also be serving the vegan Impossible Burger, a few other sandwiches (like fried chicken), soups, and salad. Desserts include milkshakes, doughnut sticks, sundaes, and floats.

A full bar features cocktail from Scott Brucar (Gather) and beer. The restaurant will be open for lunch and has free WiFi along with late-night hours on the weekend. The Piccolo Sogno team believes River West needed a neighborhood spot and hope Maillard Tavern, which opens on Thursday, fills the void. Look at the photos and menu below.

Maillard Tavern, 494 N. Milwaukee Avenue, open 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday through Wednesday and 11 a.m. to 1 a.m. Thursday through Saturday.

The bar is a main focal point in the restaurant.
A few four- and two-tops fill the main space in the restaurant.
Booths line the restaurant for a cozier spot to hang.
Burgers are the focal point of the menu.
Barry Brecheisen
Fried chicken sandwiches are also on the menu.
Milkshakes round out the neighborhood restaurant’s menu.
Doughnut sticks are also on the menu, since desserts are a prominent part of the restaurant’s makeup.
Decadent options like burgers and fries topped with foie gras pop up throughout the menu.
Cocktails with pretty garnishes make this spot a place to come and hang out.
Drinks are by Scott Brucar.
The restaurant will fill a space in River West that has only been home to a billboard for years.
Fun garnishes top the restaurant’s cocktails.

Maillard Tavern

494 North Milwaukee Avenue, , IL 60654 (312) 766-2727 Visit Website