Bronzeville Winery, the long- and eagerly awaited wine bar and restaurant that’s been in the works for two years in Chicago’s historic Black cultural and business epicenter, will finally debut in late April on the city’s South Side. One of the most anticipated openings of 2022, the Black-owned venture will open on Wednesday, April 20 at 4420 S. Cottage Grove Avenue inside the newish 4400 Grove housing development.
Patrons can book reservations for the dining room and chef’s table via Tock.
The team behind this ambitious project — Silver Room owner Eric Williams and urban planner Cecilia Cuff — hope that Bronzeville Winery will serve as a community center that helps to spark a new era of growth in the neighborhood and defy racist misconceptions that have led many hospitality groups and developers to ignore the area. In March, operators announced the addition of notable Chicago sommelier Derrick Westbrook (Juice @ 1340), who will oversee the wine program.
Unsurprisingly, pandemic delays have stymied the bar’s progress since it was first announced in 2021, forcing operators to alter their plans in response to the ever-changing public health crisis. Menu details are scarce, though selections like vanilla pear mimosas, bananas foster French toast, and chickpea cakes (achiote curry, acorn squash) are pictured on the winery’s website. The spacious dining room, which includes a chef’s counter, uses natural wood tones and dark furniture to offset colorful wall art and rows upon rows of wine bottles. Williams in January told Eater that he aims to balance upscale food with a laid-back atmosphere. Ownership has not yet responded to a request for more information.
Over the past few years, the upward trend in hospitality buzz around Bronzeville that Williams and Cuff predicted has begun to unfold. Turner Haus Brewing, a rare Black-owned beer in the disproportionately white-owned craft beer industry, is working to open two projects in the neighborhood. It’s also home to indie cafe Little Sandwich House from hospitality veteran and Bronzeville local DeCarlo Pittman (Big Star, Violet Hour), a location from local coffee mini-chain Sip & Savor, breakfast spot Peach’s Restaurant, and Carver 47 inside cultural arts and education center Little Black Pearl.