bThe owners of the Bellevue, the new Gold Coast restaurant that premiered last week and replaced Tavern on Rush across from the triangle officially recognized as Mariano Park, say they’ve poured “several million dollars” in differentiating it from the former tenant.
They brought in Knauer Incorporated to oversee the overhaul and to transport the space out of the ‘80s by lightening up the decor, adding, as a news release describes, “a mix of rich leathers, velvets, brass, and wood, along with lively patterned tile floors and a welcoming palette of clementine and hunter green.”
The space screams Gold Coast, and Chicago diners will have to figure out if that’s compelling enough. Tavern on Rush was a steakhouse and its old menu, still online, shows a bountiful chop section with many familiar cuts. If it’s a relic of the era, don’t tell Morton’s or Gibsons across the street.
Executive chef Marco Di Benedetto spent close to two decades with Gibsons, overseeing its Rosemont location. As much as the Bellevue wants to break free of that mold (especially given the circumstances that ended Tavern’s 24-year run), its menu features a standby that’s becoming harder and harder to find around the city. Yes, while people watching on the 100-seat patio along Rush Street, diners can enjoy shrimp DeJohnge. There are two steaks on the all-day menu, with a “wood-fired” section. Tavern specialized in charcoal delights.
Keeping with the beefy theme is a curious appetizer: Flaming saganaki skirt steak. These are described as kefalotyri cheese with lemon and oregano skirt steak skewers. Maybe servers will also yell “oppa!” as they do in Greektown when servers light the pan-fried cheese appetizer on fire.
Marketing has harped on a message that the restaurant is going for an elegant and approachable experience with a massive seafood tower, a prime rib French Dip, and more. The menu items are all new, but it’s broken down similarly — with the absence of that steak section — to Tavern on Rush, which was also going for an elegant and approachable experience. This is why Michael Jordan, Jon Bon Jovi, and other celebrities hung out at the restaurant.
Walk through the space below.
The Bellevue, 1031 N. Rush Street, open 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily; reservations via Sevenrooms.