Creamy cheeses, fresh breads, and buttermilk-poached whitefish combine to give customers a taste of Wisconsin at Brothers and Sisters, the new all-day cafe and wine bottle shop opening this week in West Town. The comfy cafe will debut on Wednesday, according to a spokesperson, inside a renovated furniture store that lasted nearly a century. The Columbia Furniture store closed in 2016 after 94 years of business at 2125 W. Chicago Avenue.
The cafe’s co-owner, Erin Carlman Weber (Girl & the Goat, Formaggio Kitchen) worked with Jonny Hunter, a Beard Award nominee this year for Best Chef: Midwest for his work at Forequarter in Madison, Wisconsin. It was his fourth nomination. Brothers and Sisters is a collaboration between those two, along with co-owner Derek Herbster (Portsmith, Stumptown Coffee). Hunter founded Underground Food Collective which has sold meats at various Chicago farmer’s markets.
The menu and space give off a mild supper club feel — the Brandy Alexanders and pinewood aromas are absent. It’s been tweaked for an urban space. There’s bar seating and a communal table. The cafe will serve breakfast starting at 8 a.m., then shift midday to a lunch menu with counter service all day. Dinner, starting at 4 p.m., will feature larger items including a pan-seared steak and roasted chicken.
Underground Meats — part of the collective — is known for its fine selection of cured meats and cheeses, and Chicagoans can try them at Brothers and Sisters. The sopressata is part of a breakfast sandwich with a fried egg, aioli, and hot sauce on an English muffin. The lunch menu features sandwiches including a smashed white bean with marinated fennel and salt-fermented beets on focaccia. Desserts included brioche doughnuts and a hickory chess pie.
The market side of the space will be a huge draw where customers can grab fancy cheeses and meats to go. Customers could also grab a bottle of wine or beer out of the coolers and drink them on premises. They promise a selection of about 100 wines and 50 beers. There’s also wine by the glass and draft beer. The beer is local with breweries like Half Acre and Maplewood. Check what’s available in house in the menus below. For those who don’t need booze during the day Ruby Coffee Roasters will provide the caffeine.
Read the full menus below. Brothers and Sisters opens on Wednesday.