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TikTok-Famous Kong Dog Heads to Lincoln Park and More Upcoming Bars and Restaurants to Know

A regularly updated list of forthcoming restaurants and bars

A row of battered hot dogs on sticks with various toppings and seasonings.
Kong Dog is preparing to open its first Chicago location.
Kim Kovacik/Eater Chicago

June 21

Lincoln Park: The owner of neighborhood beer bar and burger hotspot the Bad Apple is eyeing a possible second location at 658 W. Belden Avenue, the former home of the original John Barleycorn, the infamous watering hole that closed in 2014 after 50 years, according to WhatNowChicago. Kevin O’Hare, who bought the Bad Apple in 2019, tells reporters that a deal is not yet final, but if it does come to fruition, the new bar could open in late 2022 or early 2023.

Lincoln Park: A third location of Kong Dog, the Korean hot dog spot that became a TikTok sensation last summer when it opened in Glenview, will be opening soon at 2411 N. Clark Street, the former home of Pizza Nostra. In addition to the Glenview location, there’s also an outpost on Taylor Street near UIC.

A sign in a store window.
Kong Dog will be opening soon in Lincoln Park.
Aimee Levitt/Eater Chicago

Lincoln Park: Fast-growing West Coast chain Mochinut plans to bring its mochi doughnuts and Korean hot dogs on sticks to 733 W. Fullerton Avenue in late 2022, according to its website and social media. The brand in April opened its first Chicago location in Little Italy near the University of Illinois Chicago (UIC) and aims to soon open suburban shops in Wheeling and Arlington Heights.

West Town: Barcocina, the seven-year-old modern Mexican restaurant in Lakeview, is making moves to take over the space at 1814 W. Chicago Avenue, according to a liquor license application. The space previously housed Tecalitlan, a popular Mexican stalwart that in 2021 moved to Lincoln Park after half a century in business. Barcocina first opened in 2015 on Sheffield Avenue and George Street.

Wheeling: Fifty/50 Restaurant Group’s West Town Bakery and Diner has proposed a new outpost at 781 N. Milwaukee Avenue in suburban Wheeling, according to WhatNowChicago. If village officials approve the plan, the bakery’s first location outside the city will share the location — a nearly 12,000-foot space that until 2019 housed breastaurant chain Twin Peaks — with marijuana dispensary OKAY Cannabis Experience. West Town Bakery, known for sassy and colorful sweets, has locations in its eponymous neighborhood of West Town, as well as Wrigleyville, the Loop, and River North.

June 14

Edgewater: The owners of Porkchop, the barbecue mini-chain, have applied for a city liquor license for a fourth location at 6341-6343 N. Broadway, a storefront that was, for 80 years, the home of Hamilton’s, the legendary Loyola campus bar that closed in 2012. Porkchop already has locations in Albany Park, the West Loop, and Midway Airport.

Fulton Market: DineAmic Hospitality, the group behind Lyra, Bar Siena, and Prime and Provisions, among others, will open an Italian steakhouse called Fioretta in a new office tower at 320 S. Sangamon Street later this year, Crain’s reports. The kitchen will be run by brothers and former Top Chef contestants Michael and Bryan Voltaggio (Michael won, Bryan didn’t) and the dining room will be decked out 1950s style.

Goose Island: The iO Theater, the improv comedy institution at 1501 N. Kingsbury, will reopen this fall with its bar intact according to a city liquor license filing. This is important because sometimes alcohol is necessary for audiences of amateur improv performances.

Loop: A new outpost of Casa Bonita, a Mexican restaurant in suburban Libertyville, will open in Millennium Park later this month, Crain’s reports. This is part of a deal between Casa Bonita’s parent company, Vandalay Brands, and the city to oversee all concessions in the park. Other Vandalay properties with locations in the park include Napolita Pizzeria and Double Clutch Brewery.

Uptown: Marina’s Cafe, a new Puerto Rican and Latin fusion restaurant will be opening in a former video store at 4554 N. Magnolia Avenue later this summer, WhatNow Chicago reports. Owner Eric Roldan is currently operating the restaurant as a catering business using his family recipes.

West Loop: A restaurant called Sante will be opening in the new office tower at 320 S. Canal Street that’s adjacent to Union Station, according to a city liquor license application. The owners are part of DRW Holdings, an electronic trading firm in the city.

Oak Brook: The Downers Grove-based winery chain Cooper’s Hawk plans to open a Neapolitan pizza spot called Piccolo Buco by Cooper’s Hawk run by chef Luca Issa, the chef behind the original Piccolo Buco in Rome, that will cater to its wine club, Crain’s reports. It will be a sibling restaurant to Esquire by Cooper’s Hawk, the Gold Coast spot that opened this spring with the promise of a different celebrity guest chef every quarter.

For a list of coming attractions from spring 2022, click here.

Cooper's Hawk Esquire Chicago

58 E. Oak Street, Chicago, IL 60611 Visit Website

Porkchop

555 S Dearborn St, Chicago, IL 60605

Barcocina

2901 North Sheffield Avenue, , IL 60657 (773) 687-9949 Visit Website

The Bad Apple

4300 North Lincoln Avenue, , IL 60618 (773) 360-8406 Visit Website

Kong Dog

1424 W. Taylor Street, Chicago, IL 60607 Visit Website

Lyra

905 W. Fulton Market, Chicago, IL 60607 (312) 660-7722 Visit Website