Downtown Chicago’s next food hall, Wells St. Market, should open in the spring as crews complete construction on the 10,500-square-foot space. Previously-announced tenants include Piggie Smalls, a spinoff of Jimmy Bannos Jr.’s Purple Pig. Wells St. is now unveiling a pair of newcomers at 205 W. Wacker Drive: FARE and The Chow Brothers.
FARE is the brainchild of two former employees of the Gibsons Restaurant Group with more than 20 years of industry experience. Though they both enjoyed their share of steak and potatoes, Kasia Bednarz and Britni DeLeon want to give the public lighter and healthier options. They plan to change the menu every eight to 12 weeks with items like tea-infused bone broth and a labaneh toast with shaved zucchini and nigella seeds. They’ll also offer customizable grain bowls including a sweet potato hash egg option. FARE will also cater private and corporate events.
“We’re nourishing from the inside and out,” said Bednarz.
The second concept, The Chow Brothers, is a modern twist on Polish cuisine. Brothers Chris and Mark Chowaniec grew up on the Northwest side and their parents are Polish immigrants. Chris Chowaniec graduated from culinary school and now they’re ready to share their culture downtown. They want to reimagine Polish food with items like a sweet potato Thai green curry pierogi.
“Whenever we describe that to people, they’re like ‘we need to get that in my mouth,’” said Mark Chowaniec.
If that’s not unique enough, the Chowaniecs are also working on a Polish-inspired Cuban sandwich. They’ll use either a Kaiser roll or water bread. They’ll also have a pickle bar.
Both new vendors said they have a commitment to using organic ingredients and want to ensure folks with different dietary needs — vegan, gluten free, etc. — have options. Another similarity is that FARE and Chow Brothers are interested in opening more restaurants.
Wells St. Market’s lineup will also include Firecakes donuts, Pork and Mindy’s, Furious Spoon, and a new restaurant from chef Takashi Yagihashi (Slurping Turtle, Takashi). They’re targeting a spring opening.