Prolific empire-building restaurateur Brendan Sodikoff is at it again with another opening, this time a throwback Italian eatery in River North. Last week Sodikoff’s Hogsalt Hospitality opened Ciccio Mio in his former Radio Anago space at 226 W. Kinzie Street, the Japanese restaurant that he closed in May after a little more than a year in business next to his oldest restaurant Gilt Bar.
The man behind ever-popular Au Cheval and other hit restaurants in Chicago and New York says Ciccio Mio is “built to simply be a nice Italian restaurant.” Patrons will notice many of his signature eye-catching design touches — dim lighting, plush booths, throwback framed photographs, chandeliers — inside the 50-seat space.
Currently open for dinner only on Wednesdays through Sundays, the menu offers recognizable Italian dishes including antipasti (stuffed artichokes, burrata, arancini), pastas (bucatini with fresh Burgundy truffles, rolled lasagna with bolognese sauce), fish (skewered swordfish, shrimp scampi), and mains (half chicken marsala, coal-fired ribeye steak). It also offers a full cocktail menu with a signature Amaro shaved ice, a black Manhattan, and other classics. Check out the menu below.
The new spot is much different than its predecessor Radio Anago, which offered some flashy items including fried chicken with edible gold, cocktail shots, and flights of tuna nigiri in a sleek, modern space. The restaurant, which shared space with his Japanese coffee shop Sawada Matcha, garnered mixed reviews including one notable slam.
This time around, Sodikoff says he designed its replacement Ciccio Mio to simply be “comfortable and neighborhood focused with no goals or awards in mind.” It also isn’t his first Italian restaurant, as he previously operated Cocello in western River North before reconcepting it into 3 Greens Market.
This opening is just one of many upcoming for the prolific restaurateur, as he’s also planning to open two new West Loop restaurants, a massive complex on the Chicago River, and is reportedly working to rezone a building in Bucktown/Wicker Park in order to build a new business with a retractable roof. Stay tuned for news on those.