The owners of Mott St, the creative Korean-influenced restaurant in West Town, plan to open a casual new Logan Square spot that appears to be centered around their burgers. There’s a liquor license application for Mini Mott inside the former Jam space at 3057 W. Logan Boulevard. The idea seems on par with Hogsalt Hospitality’s strategy in spinning off Au Cheval’s burgers into the Small Cheval mini chain.
Mott St’s burgers rank among Chicago’s best. While they’re always available at the restaurant’s bar, ownership only later made the burgers available to customers seated at tables. The item sprouted from an Eater Chicago challenge in 2015 for restaurants without burgers to create a limited-time offering. Chef Edward Kim responded with two quarter-pound chuck stacks topped with sweet potato shoestrings, hoisin aioli, pickled jalapeños, dill pickles, miso butter, diced onion, and American cheese between a toasted bun. Fried eggs are optional. The burgers became so popular that they became a permanent menu item.
Meanwhile, rumors of a burger-focused restaurant began circulating last year from real estate sources and others as the burger started to receive national acclaim. While umami can be used as a cliche to describe food, that’s not the case with Mott St’s burger, which has a unique kick thanks to the smack of miso butter.
Kim and his family own Mott St. They also owned Ruxbin, which was more of a fine dining option a few blocks south on Ashland Avenue. Ownership tried remodeling and new menus but they eventually closed the restaurant last August after seven years. Mini Mott is a shift to even a more casual setting and more of a sure thing compared to fine dining’s thinner profit margins. The Ruxbin space continues to be vacant and even the patio lights remain strung up on the sidewalk. It’s unclear if the restaurant would only serve burgers. Ownership declined to share details.
“We’re cooking up some ideas, and are excited to be in Logan Square soon,” Mott St’s Nate Chung replied via email. “More details to come!”
The kitchen inside the former Jam space is large enough to accommodate Kim if he and his staff wanted to cook more than burgers. Mott St opened in 2013 to blend Asian and European flavors to create inventive items like a lasagna-like cabbage stuffed with kimchi and pork, Sichuan pepper-spiced chicken wings, and kimchi-stuffed empanadas.
With ownership at the liquor license application stage an opening may not be too far around the corner. Check back for updates.