Wicker Park Bucktown Insider's Guide

Banh Mi & Co Expands to Wicker Park

Michael Hamrick - Thursday, March 20, 2014

Updated March 20, 2014 - When we stepped into the former location for the Purple Cow Ice Cream Shop at 1740 W. Division in Wicker Park today, it still smelled like sugar cones and caramel corn. But the official signage is up and Banh Mi & Co is getting ready to move in. They are still targeting an April opening.


 - Banh Mi & Co. is opening in Wicker Park by April.

photo courtesy of Crain's Chicago Business

Published February 17, 2014 - Wicker Wire: Banh Mi & Co has signed a lease and is moving in to Wicker Park this Spring according to a report published by Crain's Chicago Business.

The Wicker Park location at 1740 W. Division Street (formerly The Purple Cow Ice Cream Shop) will be the fifth for Banh Mi & Co and John Sanchez, one of the chain's partners, says he hopes to open 5 more locations this year. 

The Vietnamese sandwich shop started in 2012 in Lakeview expanding quickly into Roscoe Village and the Loop.

Look for Banh Mi & Co to open in Wicker Park by April 2014.

Banh Mi & Co Expands to Wicker Park [Crain's Chicago Business]

New Wicker Park Potbelly's Opens Wednesday

Michael Hamrick - Monday, March 17, 2014


Wicker Wire: Moving in to the space formerly Oberweis at 1293 N. Milwaukee Avenue, the Potbelly Sandwich Shop will officially open their doors to the public at 11:00am on Wednesday March 19, 2014.

They are hosting a fundraiser tonight where $5 buys you a sandwich and proceeds will help to raise funds for Wells Community Academy High School. They'll close up shop again tonight and reopen on Wednesday.


 Embedded image permalink


Owners of Big Star, Violet Hour Plan New Mexican Spot in Wicker Park

Michael Hamrick - Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Last year we reported the team behind Wicker Park's Big Star and Violet Hour (One Off Hospitality Inc), had secured the space formerly Cipolina at 1543 N. Damen Avenue setting their sights for a new eatery in the neighborhood.

And according to Chicago Magazine's Penny Pollack, Paul Kahan (Chef and Co-Owner of One of Hospitality), the new space is going to be more Mexican.

With Rick Bayless's new restaurant opening this year at 1471 N. Milwaukee Avenue and the many Mexican spots already in the neighborhood already, we were hoping for something a little different. But opening a "sister to Big Star" as Kahan describes it, makes perfect sense for the location.

Additional details to follow as they become available.



The Power 100 [Chicago Magazine]

Bucktown's Grass Fed Closing This Weekend

Michael Hamrick - Monday, February 03, 2014

image courtesy of Grass Fed

Wicker Wire: Bucktown's Grass Fed at 1721 N. Damen Avenue announced earlier today via facebook, that they will be closing following Chicago Restaurant Week. Their final day will be Sunday February 8th.

According to their announcement, plans to re-concept and re-open are in the very near future.

We will keep you apprised of details as they become available.

Experience Restaurant Week in Wicker Park, Bucktown Chicago

Michael Hamrick - Wednesday, January 22, 2014

2012_1_16_CRW.jpg The Seventh Annual Chicago Restaurant Week will delight the appetites of many from January 24 - February 6, 2014. During that week, more than 280 restaurants will participate for 10 full days. This annual event allows all of us to try some of the city's best chefs at restaurants with prix fixe menus starting at $22 for lunch and $33/$44 for dinner. Many restaurants will fill up so be sure to make your reservations early.

Want to know which fantastic restaurants are participating in the neighborhood? Here's the list:

The Bristol

2152 N. Damen Avenue, Bucktown




Carriage House

1700 W. Division Street, Wicker Park

(773) 384-9700




1616 N. Damen Avenue, Bucktown

(773) 772- 7100



Francesca's Forno

1576 N. Milwaukee Avenue, Wicker Park

(773) 770-0184



Grass Fed

1721 N. Damen Avenue, Bucktown

(773) 342-6000



Mirai Sushi

2020 W. Division Street, Wicker Park

(773) 862-8500



Red Door

2118 N. Damen Avenue, Wicker Park

(773) 697-7221


SmallBar Division

2049 W. Division Street, Wicker Park

(773) 772-2727



The Savoy

1408 N. Milwaukee Avenue, Wicker Park

(773) 698 - 6925




1265 N. Milwaukee Avenue, Wicker Park

(773) 252-2020




2039 W. North Avenue, Wicker Park

(773) 661-1540



For a full list of All Participants, head to Chicago Restaurant Week's Website.

Dave Grohl, Foo Fighters Back at Piece in Wicker Park

Michael Hamrick - Tuesday, January 21, 2014

photo courtesy of Piece via Facebook.

When Dave Grohl and the Foo Fighters are in Chicago, they never seem to miss their visit to Piece Pizza in Wicker Park.

They appeared, once again, at the favorite pizza spot last night, January 20, 2014.

Dave Grohl and team made an appearance last November and members of the Foo Fighters and Nirvana made another appearance at Piece Pizza in June of last year:

So if you'd like to bump into Dave Grohl and the Foo Fighters the next time they're in town, be sure to head to Piece Pizza. 

La Colombe Says They're Opening Soon in Wicker Park

Michael Hamrick - Thursday, January 16, 2014
photo courtesy of La Colombe 

We first reported on La Colombe heading to Wicker Park waaaay back in May of last year and their target date for opening then was September 2013.


Photo: Our newest location in Chicago's Wicker Park got a hand-gilded window sign by Gibbs Connors.Wicker Park location photo courtesy of La Colombe via Facebook.

Well, delays do happen and La Colombe is getting ready at long last to open their doors in the space formerly the location of Greener Cleaners at 1552 N. Damen Avenue directly next to the Blue Line in Wicker Park. Today is "health inspection day" according to an instagram photo published earlier.

They should be opening any day now.


We, of course, will keep you posted.



Related: La Colombe to Open in Bucktown.


New 2014 Wicker Park, Bucktown Restaurants To Put On Your Radar

Michael Hamrick - Tuesday, January 07, 2014

With 2013 just days behind us, we're setting our sights on the new Wicker Park and Bucktown area eateries heading our way. So who are we really looking forward to in 2014?

Brendan Sodikoff's New Pizza Place - 1732 N. Milwaukee Avenue. Cafe Con Leche closed in 2013 and a new pizza-by-the-slice spot may just be taking its place.

Cheesies Pub & Grub - Voted the best grilled cheese in America, Cheesie's is opening another location in Wicker Park plus they're adding a bar called Whiskey Business and a poutine bar. A rooftop deck is also in the works at 1365 N. Milwaukee Avenue.

Paul Kahan (Big Star)/One Hospitality -  New Spot in Cipolina Space - Cipolina closed up shop quietly in 2013 and the team behind Big Star and the Violet Hour were quick to secure the space just steps away at 1543 N. Damen Avenue. Plans are also in the works to expand Big Star this year.

Rick Bayless's Wicker Park Resto - Similar to Xoco but with a bar program and larger space. This new spot is planned for the previous location of Salud at 1471 N. Milwaukee Avenue. Their target date is April 2014.

Stan's Doughnuts - Opening the location formerly Skewerz, and directly across the street from Glazed and Infused, LA-based Stan's Doughnuts. They were anticipating a Fall 2013 opening so our guess would be 1st Quarter of this year.  

The Winchester - Technically located in Ukrainian Village at 1001 N. Winchester, The Winchester will offer and all-day menu serving sandwiches and salads and will start bright an early with a breakfast menu. The best part? The former chef of Tavernita is heading up this spot. Hoping to open last Fall, The Winchester should be opening very soon.

In addition to these, there are a bunch of new coffee shops opening early this year in Wicker Park including Le Colombe and Intelligentsia.

Many of these openings have been delayed. So we'll keep you posted.

Win A FREE $25 Gift Card From Riverside Cafe!

Michael Hamrick - Thursday, January 02, 2014

Breakfast tacos $2 every day at Riverside Cafe.


Win A FREE $25 Gift Certificate from Bucktown's Riverside Cafe ! 

Riverside Cafe has been a part of the Bucktown community since 1984 (yes almost 30 years). They're located at 1656 W. Cortland Avenue and serve breakfast (like pancakes and sausage) plus lunch every day. In the Summer, they'll feature a special dinner or two on their gorgeous secluded patio.

Throughout the week you'll find a variety of American, Latin and Spanish fare here; everything from soups/salads/sandwiches to empanadas. 

And on Sunday they offer a huge family style brunch with almost 50 items including: french toast, eggs, sausage, bacon, bagels, croissants and much more.. They're byob so you can bring the champagne and they'll provide the oj.

So here's the scoop. Riverside Cafe serves an American Classic Breakfast Monday-Saturday from 7am-2pm that features some Latin options like the delicious breakfast tacos above.

They're considering offering their All-You-Can-Eat Brunch on Saturday AND Sunday. Right now they're offering it only on Sunday. offering their All-You-Can-Eat-Brunch on Saturday a good idea? Just tell us Yay or Nay by 12pm Friday (January 3rd 2014) to enter to win.

Just let us know via Facebook or via Twitter and look for our announcement.

We'll be announcing the winner at 12:15pm on Friday January 3rd 2014 and the winner will have 24 hours to claim their prize. Ready. Set. Go. And good luck ! 

Deals of The Day- The Savoy, Feast , DIVVY !

Michael Hamrick - Monday, December 16, 2013

photo courtesy of The Savoy via Facebook.

Wicker Wire:

We always on the look out for amazing deals in the neighborhood. And these are great deals ending soon.


Save on a 1 Year Membership or 3 twenty-four hour passes to be used by June 2014.

Feast - 1616 N. Damen Avenue- Bucktown

Save 50% For A Limited Time Only

The Savoy- 1408 N. Milwaukee Avenue- Wicker Park

Save 46% on Brunch or Dinner

Ends in 2 days.

Great spots. Great deals. All information courtesy of Groupon.

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