Wondering what’s in the works in the Chicago area for restaurants, bars, and cafes? Look no further than Eater Chicago’s guide to summer 2022’s coming attractions for dining. Did we miss something? Send Eater Chicago a tip at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Fulton Market: The as-yet-unnamed new project from mammoth Chicago restaurant group Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises has applied for a liquor license at 167 N. Green Street. Real estate developer Shapack Partners confirmed the impending opening in August in the True West Loop neighborhood Facebook group. The restaurant will have two floors and riff on California-style cuisine along the lines of Summer House Santa Monica.
Garfield Park: Owners behind forthcoming bar Missy’s On Fifth applied for a tavern license at 3134 W. 5th Avenue. The address was previously home to Ge Ge’s On Fifth, but it is unclear if the businesses share ownership.
Lakeview: Signs are up and construction is underway at Soli Grill, a new vegan restaurant moving in next door to the Mercury Theater at 3747 N. Southport Avenue. Operators applied for a liquor license in February in the former home of Grassroots Grill, a new American restaurant that closed in late 2019.
West Town: Tandoor Char House, the South Asian fusion spot from owner Faraz Sardharia, is opening a third location to go with restaurants in Lincoln Park and River North. Ownership hasn’t confirmed the location, but look for an announcement soon.
Wicker Park: St. Louis-native David Choi is bringing Seoul Taco to Wicker Park. Korean-American fast-casual spot is taking over the former Conrad’s at 1422 N. Milwaukee Avenue. Choi opened his first Chicago location in 2018 in River North and he’s also opened a Hyde Park spot. Look for an opening this week.
Wrigleyville: Infamous chicken chain Chick-fil-A is coming to a much-discussed space at 3500 N. Clark Street, signs indicate, stepping into the void left when plans for an outpost of Wisconsin-based butter burger brand Culver’s fell through in early 2021. Culver’s still has plans for the neighborhood — a location is slated to open in an Addison Street retail building (previously home to a popular Taco Bell) that recently went on sale for a cool $36 million, according to Crain’s.
Fulton Market: Estereo, the breezy Logan Square cocktail spot with a vinyl soundtrack and Latin American vibes, will expand into a new location at 1001 W. Fulton Market, according to a rep. Ownership group Heisler Hospitality, known for local venues like Sportsman’s Club and Lone Wolf, is aiming for an early- or mid-fall debut and construction is “well underway.” Originally founded in 2016 on the corner of Milwaukee and Sacramento avenues, Estereo quickly established itself as an essential destination in the neighborhood. Stay tuned for more on this opening.
Fulton Market: Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises, Chicago’s largest restaurant group, is planning to open a new restaurant inside the 167 Green office building at 167 N. Green Street, real estate developer Shapack Partners confirmed in the True West Loop neighborhood Facebook group. The restaurant will bear a resemblance to the group’s West Coast-style spot Summer House Santa Monica and will serve breakfast, lunch, and dinner on two levels and on an outdoor patio.
The Loop: The Fifty/50 Group has an official name for its new downtown project. Kindling: Downtown Cookout & Cocktails, the forthcoming restaurant Fifty/50 (Roots Handmade Pizza, West Town Bakery, and more) centered around wood-fired cooking, has applied for a liquor license in anticipation of an opening in early January inside Chicago landmark Willis Tower, according to co-founder Scott Weiner. Kindling will be the first fill-service restaurant inside Catalog, the tower’s dining complex that also includes the second Chicago location of Urbanspace food hall. The restaurant will also include an outdoor seating and lawn games.
Logan Square: Local Mexican mini-chain Taco Maya has applied for a liquor license at 2529 N. Milwaukee Avenue in the former home of Cuban restaurant Senor Pan Y Mas. The new spot is Taco Maya’s second forthcoming city location, joining a forthcoming outpost in Lakeview on Ohio Street. These restaurants will join the company’s existing spot in the South Loop, as well as suburban spaces in Rosemont, Niles, Schaumburg, and Bloomingdale.
Schaumburg: A pair of fast-casual restaurants are set to open in the fall in the Woodfield Mall in suburban Schaumburg, according to the Daily Herald. New fast-casual restaurant Falafil East Mediterranean Kitchen is slated for an October opening in the mall’s “dining pavilion,” and suburban mini-chain Byrd’s Hot Chicken will follow with a December debut. The restaurants will reside above a forthcoming joint outpost from frozen yogurt chain TCBY and cookie giant Mrs. Fields.
Bucktown/Pilsen: Mexican vegetarian and vegan favorite Quesadilla La Reina Del Sur has longed to move into a larger location at 2237 N. Western Avenue, a door away from its original Bucktown location. However, there have been delays, and now the restaurant has announced the opening of a second location in Pilsen at 1519 W. 18th Street.
Edgewater: A new bar, Randall’s Pub, wants to take over a spot at at 6341 N. Clark Street that was occupied by Parlour on Clark, according to Block Club Chicago. Ownership needs a zoning change to make it happen.
Dunning: Eli’s Cheesecake plans on a major expansion of its factory. President Marc Shulman tells Crain’s that it’s the bakery’s first factory expansion of the facility since it opened in 1995.
Lincoln Square: The team behind Northman and Bar on Buena have a new project called the Green Post. There was no response to an email sent to ownership — no address was mentioned. However, they’re hiring.
Wicker Park: A new location of Kung Fu Tea is set for 1624 W. Division Street. This Canadian bubble tea chain has location in Chinatown and Uptown. Window signage in Wicker Park promises something new: ramen.
Avondale: Chicago bar industry veteran Dave Thompson (Cherry Circle Room, the Map Room) plans to open a new wine bar and bottle shop this fall at 2901 N. Milwaukee Avenue, according to Block Club Chicago. The dozen-seat spot will be called Deep Red Wine Merchant — named for 1975 Italian horror film Deep Red, a favorite of Thompson’s — that aims to become a neighborhood standby that focuses on wines from vintners who are queer, Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC). Serendipitously, Deep Red will open just blocks away from another hospitality business with a flair for scary movies: the Brewed, a horror-themed coffee shop that launched in March.
Avondale: Famed Chicago hot dog stand Jim’s Original, the 83-year-old institution celebrated for its Maxwell Street Polish sausage, will this summer open its first location on the city’s North Side, according to local food writer Titus . The new location’s address is not yet available, but third-generation co-owner Jim Christopoulos promises a drive-thru, indoor and outdoor seating, and the same menu that’s made the brand a local icon, he tells the Tribune.
Bucktown: Las Fuentes, a longtime standby for Mexican food and margaritas near DePaul in Lincoln Park, on Tuesday plans to open a new location in Bucktown via Instagram. An address is not yet available, but operators are hiring for all front- and back-of-house positions. Las Fuentes also has suburban locations in Morton Grove and Alsip.
Lincoln Square: Sideshow Gelato, a carnival-themed gelato brand from chef Jay Bliznick, will in March 2023 open a permanent location at 4819 N. Western Avenue thanks to an investment from celebrity magician Penn Jillette, according to a rep. Bliznick, formerly of century-old Italian spot the Del Rio in suburban Highwood, plans to hire a staff of aspiring entertainers to juggle, perform acrobatics, and pull off magical illusions, all while serving scoops of gelato in a variety of flavors.
Ravenswood: A new microbrewery called Demo Brewing Company is “coming soon” to 1761 W. Berteau Avenue, according to its website and a liquor license application. Photos posted to Instagram show that construction is well underway at the space near Malt Row, but an opening date is not yet available.
Wheeling: Self-serve beer bar District Brew Yards is opening another location, this time in suburban Wheeling. The Trib reports the brewery complex, which originated in West Town, is replacing Ram Restaurant and & Brewery at 700 N. Milwaukee Avenue in the Northwest Suburbs.
Avondale: After six years of preparations, Chicago beer maker Lake Effect Brewing Company has ditched plans to open a taproom inside a historic Jefferson Park firehouse and will instead debut in early 2023 in Avondale, according to Block Club Chicago. Despite a promising start and partnership with Ambrosia Homes in 2016, the project dragged through a slow permitting process, zoning change, and the lifting of a liquor sales ban along the street. The lease on Lake Effect’s current space expires at the end of the year, so a still-vague timeline on the firehouse location prompted brewery owner Clint Bautz to look elsewhere. He has declined to share an address with reporters but says the one-story space will include an indoor tasting room and outdoor beer garden.
Bucktown: The Green, a bar and restaurant with indoor golf simulation bays, is coming in early September to an 8,500-square-foot space on the first level of an apartment building at 2131 N. Elston Avenue, according to Crain’s. It will feature nine Golfzon Golf Simulators, and will be the first venue in North America to house the company’s new TwoVision edition, partner Matt Barry tells reporters. Most food and drink details remain under wraps, but patrons can expect a version of a Masters Tournament staple: pimiento cheese and egg salad sandwiches. The partners have not named the person behind culinary operations, but say it will be run by a former Alinea chef and instructor at Le Cordon Bleu.
River North: Miami-based upscale Southern restaurant chain Yardbird has applied for a liquor license for its forthcoming location at 530 N. Wabash, formerly the home of P.F. Chang’s in the Hilton Garden Inn. Co-founded in 2011 by Top Chef finalist Jeff McInnis, Yardbird currently operates locations in California; Texas; Washington, D.C.; Florida; Nevada; and Singapore, and plans to also open in 2022 in Denver.
West Loop: An expansive Italian restaurant and gourmet retail market is scheduled to open this summer with a pastry counter and wine, coffee, and cocktail bars inside the 320 South Canal office tower, according to a rep. Dubbed Canal Street Eatery and Market, the 11,000-square-foot space will serve pizza, fresh pasta, and Italian sandwiches from executive chef Forster Sorensen (Wyler Road) and chef de cuisine Ross Sundberg (West Town Bakery & Diner). The team also plans to soon launch Afterbar, a cocktail spot that also serves wine and beer, in an adjacent space just south of the restaurant and market. The project is from Spearhead Hospitality, also behind the Robey in Wicker Park and Chikatana in Fulton Market.
Wicker Park: A Michigan-based chain, Casa Tequila, should soon open its first Chicago location at 1949 W. Division Street. Signage is up, but there’s no indication of an opening date. The chain has more than 15 locations in Michigan.
Auburn Gresham: A new motorcycle-themed restaurant called Kickstands will open at 1423 W. 79th Street in August, Block Club reports. Owner Anthony Price promises a casual menu similar to TGIFridays or Applebees, walls full of motorcycle memorabilia, and employees recruited from within the neighborhood.
Fulton Market: Drive Shack, the bar, restaurant, and indoor driving range chain that was originally slated to open a Chicago location in the former Vienna Beef factory in Bucktown in 2020 and then cancelled, will be revived at 932 W. Randolph Street later this year, according to a liquor license application.
Near North Side: Antique store Architectural Artifacts will reopen at 1065 N. Orleans as a full-scale event space with a bar and all-day cafe run by chef Andrew Holladay of Lula Cafe featuring wine, snacks, and Detroit-style pizza.
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.
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.
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.