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Stephanie Izard Catering and Goose Island Beer Collaborate on Monster Private Event Space

Mixing rare beers with Izard’s award-winning food

Goose Island has remodeled its private event space.
Marc Much
Ashok Selvam is the editor of Eater Chicago and a native Chicagoan armed with more than two decades of award-winning journalism. Now covering the world of restaurants and food, his nut graphs are super nutty.

Goose Island Brewing Co. has enlisted the talents of chef and restaurateur Stephanie Izard to attract customers into its newly-remodeled private event space at its East Garfield Park barrel-aging warehouse. Starting next week, beer nerds, wedding planners, and others will be able to reserve events that feature hard-to-find Bourbon County Brand Stout and Izard’s award-winning cuisine from her catering company, Goat Group Catering. Goose Island officials want to give beer lovers an experience comparable to what wine lovers enjoy at Napa Valley and Sonoma inside the 4,200-square-foot at 603 N. Sacramento Blvd.

“It’s a really, really strong partnership, No. 1,” Goose Island President Ken Stout said. “No. 2, I think it just makes wanting to host an event here that much more appealing when you know the food is going to be coming from her...and she loves pairing beer with food, too.”

The first thing visitors see when walking into Goose Island’s new private event space.
Marc Much

Customers can select food from the Iron Chef’s three restaurants. While the menus are customizable, it wouldn’t be a stretch to mix Chinese fare from Izard’s Duck Duck Goat on Fulton Market with pig delicacies from Girl & the Goat in West Loop. Beer pairing diners will be a focus, and Stout said the kitchen was designed so Goat staff wasn’t hindered by space and had the proper equipment so their menus wouldn’t be restricted: “I’d want to have my 40th birthday party here,” said Stout.

While Stout didn’t provide pricing details for events, he said they’re not out to squeeze beer lovers. There are many options to enjoy the space. A food package isn’t mandatory, and while the main space fits 200 without seats, there’s a smaller side room that fits 50. That smaller space can be rented out by itself or along with the main room.

This room is for fans of barrel-aged brews.

The space’s design is rooted in metal and brick, adhering to the brewery’s “urban industrial” aesthetic. Overall, there’s a cave-like feel, not too different from what you’d find at an European vineyard. The hallway’s curved ceilings are lined with white tile. The main space features 120 barrels on shelves to decorate the walls. The 50-foot slab concrete bar in that main room is equipped with three beer stations outfitted with four taps each. Goose will be able to outfit those taps with anything the brewer makes.

“We just want this to be a beer experience like no other,” Stout said.

The space’s website should go live next week so customers can make reservations. Check out the photos below.

There are 120 barrels on the walls.
The 50-foot concrete slab bar showcases Goose Island’s desired “urban industrial” feel.
The end of the bar features a pick-up window for more food options.
A view of the main room the shows the entrance in the back.
The barrels hide a screen for the 4K projector on the ceiling.
The screen will probably stay hidden during weddings.
Walk from the main room through this entrance to reveal a smaller tasting room.
There’s a feeling that visitors are at a European wine cave.
More barrel action inside the side room.
These are but some of the bottles on display.
The path between the barrel house and the event space is a winding one.
Here’s a peek inside the kitchen.
Cheesemongers will enjoy this refrigerated room.
A closeup inside the cheese room where chefs could engage in “culinary theatre.”
Stephanie Izard and her crew won’t be restrained with this kitchen.
Marc Much
The barrel house’s wood-burned logo.