Chicago’s first organic fast food chain closes all Chicagoland locations
Chicagoland’s first organic fast food chain is no more — at least in Chicagoland. Nic’s Organic Fast Food closed all three locations — in suburban Rolling Meadows, Schaumburg inside the Woodfield Shopping Center, and in the Loop — as founder Benjamin Brittsan said he is focusing on West Coast expansion. Nic’s debuted organic burgers, fries, and more in Rolling Meadows in February 2017 amidst Brittsan’s ambitious expansion plan to open 50 locations in three years. Brittsan denied to comment further on his new plan. The West Coast is home to America’s first totally organic chain, San Francisco’s Organic Coup.
North Center gyro spot in hot water after homophobic comments
A North Side gyro spot is in hot water after a group of high school students allege that a man behind the counter directed homophobic comments toward them. Five Lane Tech High School students say they were at Big Boy Gyros at 3541 N. Western Avenue on Monday when after two male friends hugged each other the employee first yelled “no hugging” at them before eventually yelling “Get out of here! We don’t want your kind in here,” Block Club first reported. The students have since called for a boycott, the restaurant’s Yelp page has been besieged by angry comments, its Facebook page was too and now has been taken down, and Lane Tech’s administration released a letter supporting “any students, staff and community members that choose to not support Big Boy Gyros.”
Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams to open new location in the western suburbs
The western suburbs are getting one of the area’s most popular ice cream shops. Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams plans to open a new scoop shop in Oakbrook Center this summer, a rep says, with patio seating and a waffle cone-making station. The Ohio-based chain most recently opened on Randolph Restaurant Row and also has Chicago locations in Lakeview, Wicker Park, and more.
One of Chicago’s hottest cocktail bars is expanding
Kumiko, the uber-hot West Loop Japanese-inspired cocktail bar and restaurant from Eater Young Gun Julia Momose and the Oriole team, will open a new omakase bar in the basement on May 22. Named Kikkō, the new 10-seat counter will offer seven-course dinners for $130 per person with beverage pairings available for an additional $65, the Tribune first reported. Dishes will include golden osetra caviar with cured Hudson Canyon scallop, finger lime, and smoked soy. The existing eight-seat bar on the main floor will become available for walk-ins.
Some Illinois restaurants could start taking food stamps
And finally, a new bill proposal in the Illinois House would allow food stamps to be redeemed at restaurants. According to multiple reports, SNAP benefit recipients who are disabled, elderly or homeless; or their spouses would qualify for the “Restaurant Meal Program.” It’s not yet known which restaurants would accept the benefits, and if the bill becomes law it would take effect on January 1.