Edgewater: Hooked on Fish, a fresh and sustainable fish market that delivers around the city, will be moving into a new location at 1036-1038 W. Bryn Mawr in the last week of March, the owners announced in a Facebook post.
Lakeview: Mini Donut Factory, which has been churning out miniature doughnuts in a variety of flavors in suburban Wheeling, recently passed a city inspection on a new location at 3151 N. Broadway, former home of Casbah Cafe.
Lincoln Park: Five Iron Golf, the indoor golf simulator and indoor entertainment bar, will be opening its third Chicago-area outpost later this spring at 1000 W. North Avenue, according to a rep. The 13,150 square foot space will have a full service bar and restaurant and offer private and group lessons.
Lincoln Park: XO Marshmallow, a hot cocoa cafe and sweet shop, will be moving from its tiny Rogers Park storefront to much larger premises at 2730 N. Clark Street, according to a rep. The production facility, meanwhile, will be moving to Skokie in order to handle an increase in online orders of its gourmet marshmallows.
Lincoln Square: Wajo Sushi, which already has a location in suburban Wheeling, will open its first city location at 5437 N. Lincoln Avenue this spring, according to its website. The restaurant passed its city health inspection in February.
Loop: Barangaroo’s Aussie Pies, producer of savory mini-pies, the Australian equivalent of a hamburger, recently passed a city inspection for a new location at 205 N. Wacker Drive. Barangaroo’s already has locations in Lakeview and in the Chicago’s French Market.
River North: Dollop Coffee Company will be opening a new location at 808 N. Wells Street; the restaurant recently passed a city health inspection. The cafe already has a dozen locations in the city and Evanston, plus one more in Washington, DC.
Woodlawn: Miss Ann’s, a new restaurant that will replace JB Gee’s Chicken & Rib Joint at 6652 S. Langley, recently passed a city food inspection.
Evanston: Fast casual salad spot Sweetgreen plans to open yet another new location in the Chicago area later this spring or summer, this time in the Fountain Square Building at 1601 Sherman Avenue, WhatNow Chicago reports. The space was formerly the home of World of Beer and Evanston Pub.
Avondale: Eden, a modern American restaurant with a seasonal menu and craft cocktails, has nearly finished its relocation from the West Loop to the North Side. A Facebook post teased the opening at 2734 W. Roscoe sometime this spring. The new space will have a greenhouse and a courtyard patio.
Chinatown: Construction has resumed on the project that will transform the space at 2257 S. Wentworth, formerly Won Kow, the city’s oldest Chinese restaurant, into the first Chicago location of Xiaolongkan Hot Pot, an international chain based in China with more than 800 locations, WhatNow Chicago reports. The project, backed by Tony Hu of Lao Sze Chuan, paused during the pandemic.
Gold Coast: A building permit was issued this week to Jeni’s Ice Cream for 871 N. Wabash Avenue. The space was formerly an Argo Tea. The Cincinnati-based ice cream store has seven locations in Chicago and two in the suburbs.
Humboldt Park: The owners of Tiago’s Cafe at 4211 W. Division Street have applied for a liquor license. The building is just west of Keeler Avenue and has been unoccupied.
Little Village: Pandemic popup All Doh’z Churros is moving into a permanent location at 3536 W. 26th Street, where it will be known as El Churro Shop, Block Club reports. Owners Aldo Rios and Ana Maciel anticipate opening in four to six weeks, and they promise churros, coffee, and milkshakes. It will be a rare coffeeshop in the neighborhood.
Logan Square: A building permit was recently issued for a sushi cafe at 2513 W. Armitage Avenue, the former home of DrinkShop.
Logan Square: A new ice cream shop will be opening in the former Boulevard Bikes space at 2535 N. Kedzie Avenue near Lula Cafe, according to LTH Forum. Owner John Lawrence Geary has been planning the space since 2020; that summer, he briefly operated a vegan paleta cart but quickly shut it down after neighborhood residents accused him of cultural appropriation.
Pilsen: A permit was recently issued to Sultan’s Market to build a new restaurant at 1738 W. 18th Street. The much-loved falafel restaurant and market already has three locations in Wicker Park, Lincoln Park, and Logan Square, and it’s been teasing a Pilsen location on its social media since 2019.
West Loop: Atomic Hospitality, the owners of Recess, will be opening Tabú, a Mexican restaurant, later this spring, according to a Facebook post. Chef Saúl Román will be offering a preview this evening, March 8, at Recess, 838 W. Kinzie Street, serving taquitos, tostadas, queso fundido, and chips and salsa.
West Loop: Heisler Hospitality, owners of Nights & Weekends, the Revel Room, and Lone Wolf, among other bars and night spots, filed for permits last week to build a restaurant in the first floor of 1001 W. Fulton Market. The building, at the corner of Fulton Market and Morgan Street, is one of the many new developments in the West Loop.
Wicker Park: Construction has resumed on Hogsalt Hospitality’s new restaurant at 1661 N. Milwaukee Avenue, WhatNow Chicago reports. The project was originally announced in 2019 but was put on hold during the pandemic. The space, a former auto body shop, is 4,800 square feet, with an additional 4,830 square feet for an outdoor patio. Hogsalt has not yet decided what sort of food the restaurant will serve or what it will be called.
Avondale: Judson & Moore Distillery, a family-owned whiskey operation that uses Midwestern grains, will be opening this spring in Rockwell on the River at 3057 N. Rockwell, its owners announced in a Facebook post. The distillery will include a bar and a tasting room, as well as plenty of room for white oak barrels for aging the whiskey.
Lincoln Park: A building permit has been issued to the owners of Happy Lamb Hot Pot for a space at 2707 N. Clark Street, formerly occupied by Nest Furniture. The international chain, which originated in Inner Mongolia and is now owned by Yum! Brands, already has locations in Chinatown and suburban Naperville and is not to be confused with Little Lamb Hot Pot.
Lincoln Square: A building permit has been issued to the owners of Hello Jasmine, a boba tea and Taiwanese food restaurant with locations in the South Loop and Lincoln Park, for 4705 N. Lincoln Avenue, a former chiropractor office.
O’Hare: Taco John’s, the Wyoming-based fast food chain known for its potato olés and for trademarking the phrase “Taco Tuesday,” will be opening its first Chicago location at O’Hare sometime next year, WhatNow Chicago reports. Currently, the nearest Taco John’s is in Bourbonnais, about 60 miles from downtown.
West Loop: VietFive, a Vietnamese coffee roaster founded by former ad man and current activist Tuan Huynh who hopes to rehabilitate the reputation of robusta coffee beans, will be opening its first cafe at 1116 W. Madison Street on March 19, according to a rep. It will serve Vietnamese brewed coffee and cans of cold brew as well as whole beans.
Bucktown: Star pastry chef Mindy Segal finally bid farewell over the weekend to the Damen Avenue space that housed her restaurant, Mindy’s HotChocolate, which, during the pandemic, was reinvented as Mindy’s Bakery, a weekends-only operation. Mindy’s Bakery will be moving around the corner to 1623 N. Milwaukee Avenue near the Six Corners intersection with Damen and North Avenue, where it will be open five days a week. The move has been a long time coming: Segal first announced her plans in August 2021 after spending much of the pandemic slinging bagels, bialys, chocolate fudge babka, and other treats to customers who lined up on the sidewalk in Bucktown. “It’s time to say goodbye to 1747 N. Damen Avenue and hello to a new beginning at 1623 Milwaukee,” she writes on Facebook. “Thanks for 17 years and thank you to all who helped makes that space magical. See you all soon!”
Fulton Market: The hospitality group behind Gibsons, one of Chicago’s best-known steakhouses, is close to sealing the deal on a 15,000 square-foot space inside new construction planned for 917 W. Fulton Market, according to Crain’s. Workers are expected to complete the 11-story, 600,000-square-foot building in 2024 with the restaurant launching that spring.
Goose Island: The Salt Shed, the massive music venue prject from Thalia Hall operator 16” on Center coming to the former Morton Salt warehouse at 1357 N. Elston Avenue, aims to start hosting outdoor shows this summer before expanding to indoor events in 2023, according to Time Out Chicago. First announced in January 2021, the $30 million project could reshape the surrounding area, drawing locals and tourists with restaurants, bars, and entertainment. Open-air concerts are scheduled to begin in August with headliners like Fleet Foxes, Andrew Bird with Iron & Wine, and the stunning triple threat of Sharon Van Etten, Angel Olsen, and Julien Baker.
Lakeview: Operators behind a new restaurant called Soli Grill have applied for a liquor license at 3747 N. Southport Avenue, just steps from Chicago’s celebrated Music Box Theater. The location was previously home to neighborhood spot Grassroots Grill.
Old Town: Dom’s Kitchen & Market, the grocery store and dining spot from food retail veteran and co-founder Bob Mariano, aims to open its second location in the fall at 1225 N. Wells Street, according to a rep. The space previously housed a nine-year-old outpost of Michigan-based grocer Plum Market. The new location signifies a shift into major expansion for Dom’s, which aims to launch 15 new stories by 2025. It first debuted in June 2021 at the corner of Diversey and Halsted on the border of Lincoln Park and Lakeview.
River North: Obélix, the hotly anticipated new French restaurant from Oliver and Nicolas Poilevey (La Sardine, Le Bouchon) has applied for a liquor license at 700 N. Sedgwick Street. It’s an exciting sign of progress for the brothers’ many fans who have kept their eyes trained on the restaurant’s space, formerly home to Michelin-starred Entente, which closed early in the pandemic and never reopened. The Poileveys initially hoped to open in mid-January but have struggled with the same staffing issues affecting most of the hospitality industry.
Uptown: Popular cafe chain Stan’s Donuts & Coffee is coming in 2023 to the ground floor of an apartment building currently under construction at 4611 N. Broadway, according to Block Club Chicago. Dubbed Platform 4611, the nine-story building will include 200 apartments and 12,000 square feet of retail space. Stan’s currently operates nine Chicago cafes in Lakeview, the Gold Coast, the West Loop, Streeterville, the South Loop, and Hyde Park.
South Chicago: Birrieria Ocotlan, which bills itself as the oldest birrieria in Chicago, will be temporarily closing its original location at 8726 S. Commercial Avenue, where it has been serving goat birria since 1973, for major repairs. Owner Andres Reyes tells Block Club Chicago that the building needs a lot of repairs and he’s not sure when it will reopen, but in the meantime, fans can visit the second location at 4007 E. 106th Street in East Side.
Uptown: Rakkan Ramen, a plant-based ramen chain that originated in Tokyo, will be opening a location at 4926 N. Broadway in late spring, reports the blog Uptown Update. In addition to ramen (served both with pork and tofu for a vegan option), the restaurant, which has U.S. locations in California, Colorado, and Georgia, also offers rice bowls, gyoza, and fried chicken.
Niles: Indian street food chain Eggholic, known for its egg sandwiches, will be opening a third Chicago-area location at 8425 W. Golf Road, in Patel Brothers Plaza, according to its website. Like the other locations in River West and Schaumburg, the new outpost will specialize in egg-based Indian dishes, but will also serve sandwiches, curries, chaats, and chicken.
Wilmette: Buck Russell’s, a bakery sandwich shop from Ballyhoo Hospitality, will be opening this spring at 1137 Greenleaf Avenue, the space formerly occupied by Buttry, according to a rep. Led by pastry chef Jenny McCoy, Buck Russell’s will serve a dozen different sandwiches and pastry with an emphasis on cakes in a diner setting. This will be Ballyhoo’s third foray into the suburbs after Pomeroy and Sophia Steak.
Avondale: Mother’s Ruin, the New York City-based neighborhood bar originally slated to open in its first Chicago outpost in early 2020, is nearly finished with construction and aims to open this month at at 2943 N. Milwaukee Avenue, according to partner James Metze. In its hometown, the bar is known as a boisterous upscale dive, and operators hope to foster that same energy in Avondale with rotating cocktails and a food menu from chef and partner Nick Pfannerstill. The local location is a collaboration between the original New York team and Toby Maloney, a founding partner and head bartender of acclaimed speakeasy the Violet Hour.
Elston Industrial Corridor: The owners of 1308 Elston, a new bar and restaurant that will serve “vegetarian friendly, elevated quick bites,” according to its Instagram, have filed a liquor license application with the city. The space at 1308 N. Elston Avenue, across the street from the Morton Salt development site, is still under construction.
Lakeview: Alamo Drafthouse, the Austin-based chain of movie theaters/beerpubs with a strict no-talking policy, is opening its first Chicago location in Wrigleyville in fall 2022, according to a press release. The theater, which will be in the Addison & Clark development at 1027 W. Addison Street, across the street from Wrigley Field, will have six screens, recliners, and a full bar.
Lincoln Square: Jimmy’s Pizza Cafe, known for its New York-style slices, is moving from its longtime home on the north side of Lincoln Square to 2434 W. Montrose Avenue on the very south, the owners wrote in a Facebook post. The restaurant closed temporarily on February 3 for the move and should be back up and running by mid-month.
West Loop: A liquor license has been filed by the Bonhomme Hospitality Group (Porto, Beatnik) for a new restaurant, Bambola & Coquette, at 1400 W. Randolph Street, a new 26-story mixed-used building. This will be one of two new Bonhomme concepts opening in the building this year, according to a rep, who was not prepared to reveal any more details; a third spot will also be opening elsewhere on Randolph Street.
Wicker Park: The first Chicago location of Bartaco, a national bar and taco chain with storefronts in a dozen states, will be opening at 1635 N. Damen Avenue, in the former Northside Bar and Grill space, WhatNow Chicago reports. Bartaco, which has a beach theme, previously opened a location in Deerfield in 2019, but it has since closed.
Woodlawn: Conscious Plates, an alkaline vegan restaurant that originally opened in the Boxville marketplace in Bronzeville in 2019, will be moving in April to a larger location in the Woodlawn Station development at 820 W. 63rd Street, the Hyde Park Herald reports. Owner Latrell Garnett tells the Herald he was helped by a $178,336 Chicago Recovery Plan grant from the city, and he hopes to be able to provide more jobs in the Woodlawn community.
Hyde Park: Small Cheval, Hogsalt Hospitality’s burger mini-chain, has filed liquor license applications for two new locations, at 1307 E. 53rd Street in Hyde Park and 1352 W. Lake Street in the West Loop. The West Loop location brings Small Cheval back to its roots: it’s roughly three-quarters of a mile from Au Cheval, Hogsalt’s pub with the burger that started it all.
Lincoln Park: A liquor license application has been filed for Albion Manor, a pub in the former Distilled Chicago space at 1480 W. Webster Avenue near the Webster Place movie theater. The application has been filed by the owners of A.J. Hudson’s Public House in Lakeview.
Old Town: Cilantro Taco Grill, a local chain that already has 11 fast-casual taquerias in the western suburbs, will be opening its first city location in the strip shopping center at 333 W. North Avenue near the Sedgwick Brown Line stop, WhatNow Chicago reports. The storefront will require an interior renovation, and when it opens, it will be primarily carryout.
River North: Café Crèmerie, a European cafe serving coffee, pastry, and gelato, and selling wine by the bottle, will reopen this winter in Tree Studios, at 615 N. State Street, according to a rep. Owner Lisa Gasparian previously owned the Chicago franchise of Amorino Gelato in the Gold Coast before converting it to Café Crèmerie in 2020 in response to the pandemic. That August, looters smashed the front windows and stole the register, and Gasparian closed that location in 2021.
Lake Forest: Sophia Steak, Ballyhoo Hospitality’s family-friendly Wilmette steakhouse, will be moving further up the North Shore to a second location at 181 East Laurel Avenue in Lake Forest by the end of the year, WhatNow Chicago reports. The first Sophia Steak, a collaboration between Ballyhoo and chef Glenn Keefer, opened in 2020.
Schaumburg: Andretti Indoor Karting & Games will be opening an 80,000-square-foot facility to anchor Schaumburg’s new 23 acre entertainment district, city officials announced last week and the Daily Herald reported. Andretti, which already has five locations in Texas, Georgia, and Florida, promises, as its name suggests, indoor go-kart tracks, and also arcade and virtual reality games, laser tag, bowling, and ropes courses, plus a bar and restaurant that serves pizza, burgers, salads, and snacks.
Bronzeville: Chicago developer Urban Equities will invest $4.6 million to develop a city-owned property at 5021 S. Wabash Avenue into Soul City Kitchens, a new incubator for local food entrepreneurs. It will have fully-equipped commercial cooking facilities and test kitchens for rent, according to the Sun-Times. Area residents will also be able to rent out a community space and a private dining room.
Gold Coast: Suburban-based winery chain Cooper’s Hawk is slated on March 21 to reopen its sole Chicago location for the first time since March 2020, according to Crain’s. The opulent 24,000-square-foot space at 58 E. Oak Street debuted just months before the COVID-19 pandemic closed the city’s dining rooms. Now operators hope to spur interest, and membership to its wine club with a rotating quarterly chef-in-residence series that will kick off with celebrities at the helm: Top Chef judge and restaurateur Tom Colicchio is up first, followed by Carla Hall, an alum of Top Chef and The Chew.
Gold Coast: Maxim’s Restaurant, the elegant Art Nouveau space in the basement of the star-studded Astor Tower Hotel at 1300 N. Astor Street — known for hosting the Beatles and Elton John among others in the ’60s, ’70s, and ’80s — was sold by the city earlier this month for use as a members-only private social club, according to the Sun-Times. Buyer Adam Bilter and his 24 E. Goethe LLC purchased the 8,120-square-foot space for $680,000. Bilter told reporters that he and his fellow club members plan to preserve the interior, originally crafted by celebrated Chicago architect Bertrand Goldberg.
Pullman: Nearly three-year-old dining hub One Eleven Food Hall is temporarily closed until March as it undergoes renovations at 756 E. 111th Street near the Pullman National Monument, according to a Facebook post. Founded in 2019 by local development group Chicago Neighborhood Initiatives, One Eleven hosts three restaurants: coffee spot AndySunflower Cafe, a location of vegan spot Majani, and an outpost of barbecue hit Lexington Betty Smokehouse.
Ravenswood: A liquor license application indicates that a third outpost from Midwestern-focused restaurant Land & Lake Kitchen is coming to 1970 W. Montrose Avenue. That’s the former home of popular North Side gastropub Fountainhead, which closed in October 2020 due to financial instability brought on by the pandemic. Land & Lake, operated by LM Restaurant Group, first opened in 2017 on the ground floor of the LondonHouse hotel and four years later expanded into a second location in Andersonville.
River North: Pistores Pizza & Pastry, a forthcoming seasonal cafe with baked goods and several styles of pizza, has applied for a liquor license at 546 N. Wells Street. Co-owners Joel and Andrea Reno plan to feature Detroit- and “hybrid” New York-style pies and a full bar when they open in late April or early May, according to WhatNowChicago.
Wicker Park: Neighborhood restaurateur Felipe Caro (Authentaco, Flip) is aiming for a mid-February opening for his new as-yet-unnamed breakfast spot — a replacement for the recently closed Picante Taqueria at 2018 W. Division Street, according to Block Club Chicago. Caro shuttered the taco restaurant this month after more than two decades.
West Ridge: A new restaurant called La Calaca Cantina has applied for a liquor license at 2415 W. Peterson Avenue. The space previously housed Filipino bakery Mom’s Bake Shop.
Bronzeville: The highly anticipated wine bar and restaurant Bronzeville Winery, co-owned by Eric Williams (Silver Room), has applied for a liquor license at 4420 S. Cottage Grove Avenue. Pandemic delays have pushed back an opening, but residents are eagerly awaiting a rare wine-focused spot south of Madison Street.
Bucktown: Fans of celebrated baker Mindy Segal (HotChocolate) will have to wait a little bit longer to visit her eagerly awaited bake shop at 1623 N. Milwaukee Avenue, as various delays have pushed her hoped-for Valentines Day opening into March. Segal is simultaneously navigating both the closure of her baking operation inside the former Damen Avenue restaurant and the move into the new Bucktown space. “What I’m about to oversee here is kind of crazy,” she says. Stay tuned for news of an opening date.
Lincoln Park: Chicago’s first location of Sushi by Bou, the New York mini-chain that serves $50 omakase meals in 30 minutes, is slated to open Friday, January 21, on the second floor of Hotel Lincoln at 1816 N. Clark Street, according to a rep. Co-founded in 2018 and known for its lauded and controversial chef David Bouhadana, Sushi by Bou has locations in New York, Miami, and New Jersey, along with local sister spots Sushi Suite 202 and Sushi Boutique.
North Lawndale: Hyde Park’s popular Jamaican restaurant Ja’ Grill is gearing up to open its second location soon inside new 10-acre development Ogden Commons just east of Douglass Park at 1407 S. Washtenaw Avenue, according to a Facebook post. Owner Tony Coates hasn’t shared many details since the project was announced in May 2021, but told Eater at the time that the follow-up restaurant would maintain the Ja’ Grill ethos with “some added surprises.”
Andersonville: After 10 years at Clark and Foster, Japanese spot Ora Sushi is in the middle of a six-block move to 5701 N. Clark Street. Construction is in progress, the restaurant reports on Facebook, and management anticipates an opening announcement “soon.”
Lakeview: Crab King Cajun Boil & Bar is expanding to two new locations in 2022, according to its website: 3443 N. Broadway in Lakeview (the former Revolución Steakhouse) and 1550 75th Street in Downers Grove.
Lincoln Park: All Too Well, a new sandwich shop and market from Evette’s owner Mitchell Abou Jamra, will be opening next month in a former Subway at 352 W. Armitage Avenue, according to a rep. There will be a grab-and-go section with meats, cheeses, and Lebanese-style mezze, plus an assortment of sandwiches.
Lincoln Park: Red Light Chicken, a new chicken spot, will be opening soon in the former Devil Dawg’s flagship location at 2147 N. Sheffield Avenue, WhatNow Chicago reports, and is currently in the process of hiring staff.
Lincoln Park: Asian tea chain Uni Uni plans a third Chicago location at 2550 N. Clark, slated to open in 2022, according to its website. Uni Uni, which serves tea in a variety of styles, plus flavored milk, smoothies, and snacks, already has locations in Chinatown and Uptown, Minneapolis, and Katy, Texas.
Uptown: Milly’s Pizza in the Pan, the hit Logan Square virtual restaurant founded by Robert Maleski after he was laid off from his serving job at the start of the pandemic, is moving to a permanent location at 1005 W. Argyle, the former site of D-Benny Grill, Block Club Chicago reports. Opening day is scheduled for February 15.
West Loop: Puttery, the 21-and-over mini-golf subsidiary of Drive Shack, the driving range restaurant and bar that cancelled its expansion to Bucktown in 2020, plans to open a new location at 932 W. Randolph later this year, WhatNow Chicago reports. There will be immersive miniature golf, accompanied with appetizers, salads, pizzas, and a full bar with specialty cocktails. This is part of a large expansion effort: Puttery already has locations in Charlotte and Dallas, but is planning additional outposts in Houston, Miami, Philadelphia, and Washington, DC.
Gurnee: Construction on a new location of Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant is underway in the parking lot of a former Lowe’s in far north suburban Gurnee, the Daily Herald reports, and is expected to open sometime in 2022. The village board authorized a $1.5 million incentive for the project last April. There are already 13 Cooper’s Hawk locations in the Chicago area and 32 others in 10 states.
Rosemont: Shaquille O’Neal’s fried chicken sandwich joint Big Chicken will be opening its third full-service restaurant in a new suburban development at 9421 Higgins Road this fall, Time Out Chicago reports. Its neighbors will be outposts of Stan’s Donuts and Small Cheval, Hogsalt Hospitality’s burger chain. Big Chicken already has locations in Las Vegas and Glendale, California, as well as ghost kitchens and booths in sports stadiums and on cruise ships.
For a list of coming attractions from fall and winter 2021, click here.