TAO Group isn’t the only prominent brand that’s coming to Chicago soon. Mina Group, the brand for San Francisco-based celebrity chef Michael Mina, is planning its first Chicago restaurant inside the Waldorf Astoria hotel in the Gold Coast, according to a hiring advertisement on Craigslist. Reps for Mina and the hotel have yet to provide more information on the restaurant, although the Waldorf’s website says it's "undergo(ing) renovations to the Lobby Lounge and our third floor dining room in preparation for our exciting new national chefs’ restaurant concept due to open in late April." The ad proudly proclaims that "MINA Group/Chef Michael Mina has a new restaurant opening at the Waldorf Astoria Chicago!" and announces open hiring calls for the restaurant on Feb. 16 and 17.
The Waldorf, formerly the Elysian hotel and located at 11 E. Walton St., has undergone changes the last couple years. Brendan Sodikoff’s Hogsalt Hospitality was slated to oversee dining at the hotel, including its signature restaurant Balsan, before the contract was "mutually terminated" in early 2015. Current Maple & Ash chef Danny Grant earned his Food & Wine best new chef recognition in 2012 at a Waldorf restaurant, RIA, which held two Michelin stars at one time. Its throwback bar hideaway, Bernard’s Bar, closed in November to make way for a new all-day restaurant.
Now, it appears that the Waldorf Astoria has a new celebrity chef’s restaurant on board in Michael Mina, whose group helms a variety of acclaimed restaurants in cities across the country. Stay tuned for more intel on the concept.