Don Younger is optimistic that diners will return to Downtown Chicago, even because the pandemic has saved workplace staff and vacationers away from the Loop. Younger is the chef who helped carry Temporis a Michelin star in West City, who then moved on to WoodWind on Northwestern Memorial Hospital’s Streeterville campus. Younger’s newest mission is Venteux — a contemporary French restaurant with oyster bar focused for a spring opening contained in the historic Carbide and Carbon Constructing off the Magazine Mile.
Consolation meals is taking middle stage for eating places throughout the pandemic with kitchens prioritizing transportability as an alternative of culinary creativity. However these acquainted with Younger know the chef enjoys pushing boundaries with artistic kitchen methods and enjoyable plating. That’s a philosophy that works greatest when serving dine-in prospects, one thing which may not be a right away choice resulting from COVID-19. Nevertheless, Venteux does possess room for a 25-seat sidewalk patio which might allow Younger to serve plated meals to seated prospects. The chef is uncertain if Venteux will provide takeout.
“With the local weather proper now being so risky…we don’t know what’s occurring in two months,” Younger says. “We’ll have a while to provide you with some back-up plans as a result of it’s simply too early to inform.”
Studio Munge is reworking the 4,000-square-foot area. That is their first Chicago mission. The pandemic has modified the restaurant business, and there’s fear about Downtown Chicago’s resilience, one thing that took a success final week when Macy’s introduced the closing of its Water Tower Place retailer. Younger has already seen the affect. He’s been working as a personal chef since he laid off at WoodWind.
At Venteux, which replaces Free Rein, Younger desires to drag from his experiences at French eating places Les Nomades and Outdated City Brasserie. For instance, he’ll put together a conventional coq au vin, however use rainbow carrots to inject a bit of shade to the plate. Younger feels the basic dover sole meuniere is a bit greasy. He’s aiming for a lighter preparation with caper leaves and pickled lemons. French-Vietnamese delicacies may also be featured (Younger guarantees a banh mi on the menu) and so will French-Moroccan meals. Younger describes the menu as fashionable French meals with midwestern components.
The Carbide and Carbon constructing opened in 1929. There’s new administration for the resort area, which was most not too long ago often called St. Jane. In October, Pendry Accommodations, a California-based firm, introduced it could take over the constructing and Pendry Chicago is ready to debut this spring. Previous administration had additionally announced plans for a rooftop bar, however delays and the pandemic stalled the opening. Younger couldn’t present an replace, saying administration remains to be determining the area’s future.
Venteux is the primary Chicago mission from Clique Hospitality, an organization with eating places in San Diego, Las Vegas, and Florida. The corporate might be greatest identified for its Vegas venues. Younger mentions Lionfish Coastal Cuisine, a restaurant that opened in 2017 in San Diego.
The restaurant can be open all day, and Younger is debating making a bar menu (they’ll have a burger on the menu, regardless). Whereas the restaurant’s focus isn’t nice eating, if there’s demand, Younger says he’d prefer to check out a five-course tasting menu. Younger is aware of the business is on the mercy of COVID-19, however he’s desirous to serve and see prospects once more.
“I really feel very assured we are able to return,” Younger says.
Venteux, contained in the Carbide and Carbon constructing, 230 N. Michigan Avenue, deliberate for a spring opening.