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Jerry Garcia’s Estate Could Bring a New Music Venue to the West Loop

The Grateful Dead singer’s estate may team up with Brooklyn Bowl’s owner

Fare Thee Well, A Tribute To The Grateful Dead - General Atmosphere
The concert promoter who brought the Grateful Dead to Chicago in 2015 may open a West Loop music venue.
Photo by Daniel Boczarski/Getty Images
Ashok Selvam is the editor of Eater Chicago and a native Chicagoan armed with more than two decades of award-winning journalism. Now covering the world of restaurants and food, his nut graphs are super nutty.

The West Loop may get a new music venue from the owner of Brooklyn Bowl who’s teaming with the estate of Grateful Dead singer Jerry Garcia. This venue would be different compared to the cancelled plans Brooklyn Bowl had for Fulton Market. When reached on Monday, Peter Shapiro — owner of the entertainment complex that combines a music venue with a bowling alley, a restaurant, and a bar — was coy.

“I do have one comment now for the record,” Shapiro texted. “I love Chicago.”

Besides owning Brooklyn Bowl, Shapiro is also a concert promoter. He put together the Grateful Dead’s 50th anniversary tour, billed as the jam band’s final performances. They took place in 2015 in Santa Clara, California, and at Soldier Field in Chicago. Shapiro also has a working relationship with Grateful Dead bassist Phil Lesh that led to the 2015 shows.

While Shapiro didn’t share information about the alleged project, he also didn’t deny the report published last week in Amplify. Speculation on the True West Loop neighborhood Facebook page pointed toward the space at 1001 W. Washington Boulevard. That was Wishbone’s home for nearly three decades before the restaurant moved late last year. Real estate sources familiar with the property confirmed Brooklyn Bowl’s interest.

This incarnation of the project wouldn’t include bowling as the former Wishbone space is smaller than the Fulton Market property Brooklyn Bowl looked at before Punch Bowl Social swooped in and built its first Chicago location. There are Brooklyn Bowls in New York and Las Vegas. Menu items include French bread pizzas, fried chicken, salads, and other gastropub fare.

There’s been a push to build a music venue with ticketed shows in the West Loop over the last few years. Besides the Brooklyn Bowl plan in Fulton Market, there was a 2017 report that claimed a music space from country band Rascal Flatts was on its way to the area. There hasn’t been any news about the venue since that initial report. The area already has City Winery.