The designers behind Tied House, the new restaurant that neighbors Schubas Tavern, called their work a “once-in-a-lifetime project.” Todd Heiser, co-creative director and principal at Gensler Chicago, gushed about the chance to create the two-story restaurant. The restaurant connects to Schubas, but they left the 115-year-old building that houses the music venue intact while building a modern restaurant that accents the former Schlitz Brewery tied house.
“Schubas was beloved; we didn’t want to take it down,” said Heiser.
The restaurant, also owned by the group behind Schubas — one of Chicago’s most-respected concert spaces — opens to the public on Monday at 3157 N. Southport Avenue. Crews demolished Schubas’ previous restaurant, Harmony Grill, to make room for Tied House, and Heiser’s design makes better use of the parcel that included a narrow parking lot on the south side of the building. From the outside, the biggest addition is the space between the two structures. Heiser called that a “pocket park” that gives Schubas some space to breathe. There’s also a giant copper fireplace in that courtyard that will allow patrons to hang out with relative warmth even during fall’s last gasps in November or December.
While Tied House represents an attempt to bring elevated dining to Lakeview, Schubas has always held an every-person quality. That’s why Gensler used “humble materials.” Heiser described the polychromatic brickwork where guests can eye a diamond pattern. He also mentioned the trinkets on the shelves, one of which is a golden Schlitz globe. Everything was carefully picked out.
The first-floor includes the bar and dining room. There’s more seating on the second floor, including a private event space that takes design cues from a concert space. The 800-square-foot courtyard is open air. The entire space is packed with a “modern Midwestern aesthetic,” Heiser said.
Take a tour of the space below. Tied House, Schubas’ new restaurant, opens on Monday.