Fancy Caribbean-inspired cocktails, live music, and a whimsical attitude are coming to Logan Square when X hopefully opens this spring. The bar replaces the former Acapulco Night Club, 3433 West Fullerton Avenue — a few doors away from The Burlington. X is no dive bar; it will celebrate Caribbean culture, hoping to transport customers to San Juan, Havana, or Miami.
Chicagoans will know X’s owners from Honey’s, the recently shuttered Fulton Market restaurant. Creative director Andrew Miller and chef Charles Welch last year formed their own company, Out to Lunch Hospitality, and hope to open more restaurants and bars. One of their first ventures was Good Fortune, a pop-up in the former Sink | Swim space in Logan Square. They’ve found a permanent location for Good Fortune, which focused on creative seafood, and plan to open the restaurant later this year.
The drinks at X will embrace the full Caribbean diaspora including gin and rum, said Miller. It’s also a celebration of tiki, with rum from the Atlantic and Caribbean. Miller talked about how rum was a major economic engine for many island countries, and how he wants to give back. They’re holding an X preview pop-up on Tuesday, February 6 at Lula Cafe. That’s where X lead bartender Alexandra Wright worked. They’re donating proceeds from the night to the Hispanic Federation in its efforts to help Puerto Rican hurricane victims.
The drinks won’t be ho-hum. They’re using ingredients and fruits that will go beyond the “run of the mill” limes or oranges. They’ll have bottles and cans of beers, too. Miller praised Wright, who’s worked at places including Girl & the Goat and Nico Osteria. During her time at Lula, she learned from chef/owner Jason Hammel. His philosophies, including low-waste cocktails, will be seen at X.
They’re calling the decor a blend of 80s neon craze with San Juan, Puerto Rico. At 1,700 square feet and room for 85, there’s not a ton of space, but Miller said that it feels bigger in the way they’re designing it. Music will also be a big part of the experience. Miller doesn’t want to zero in on a specific genre. He also wants to showcase music beyond the mainstream.
“X” represents a spirit of collaboration, and Miller said he feels his team is family. Though he’s empathetic to the 50-plus employees who lost their jobs when Honey’s closed, he feels validated in his departure. He’s also said they’ve reached out to some employees to see if they needed jobs. Time Out Chicago first reported the story. Stay tuned for more from Out to Lunch in the coming year.