Thursday, June 17, 2021

Sweet Bean Sign Appears on Former Bongo Room Space (Roosevelt and Wabash)

One Asian restaurant closes, another (but very different) appears to be opening (via Eater):

South Loop: A “coming soon” sign for a new Japanese-Taiwanese cafe called Sweet Bean is visible in the window at 1152 S. Wabash Avenue, and operators have put up several job postings on Culinary Agents. The space previously housed a South Loop outpost of popular breakfast and brunch mini-chain Bongo Room, which closed in 2019.

Very curious to see what comes of this.  It's a very high trafficked corner of the neighborhood, so will be curious to see what type of reception it gets.

That said, a "Japanese-Taiwanese cafe" has us intrigued.

Here is a pic from the Hello South Loop facebook page a neighbor posted

(Hat tip: AH!)

Wednesday, June 16, 2021

Teriyaki Madness Closes its Doors at 829 S. Wabash

 It looks like we have a closure (via Teriyaki Madness Facebook):

As a reminder they opened at a tough time - June of 2020 - right when the pandemic was raging and people weren't sure what was ok.  Tough timing and sad to see them close so soon.

Maybe something else will have better luck in this spot.  Au Bon Pain had a decent run in this spot, but even that seemed like it struggled.  

Monday, June 14, 2021

Keep Printer's Row Safe! Make Your Voice Heard

It's not uncommon for violence to pick up in Chicago as the weather gets warmer. That said, it seems like it's continuing to hit VERY close to home. That said, please make your voice heard. Tomorrow is a chance to do it: 

Thursday, June 10, 2021

Lucky Well, Planned Restaurant at Roosevelt Collection from Food Network Star, Still on the Back Burner

Maybe not the most surprising news, but sounds like Lucky Well at Roosevelt Collection is a big TBD at this point (via Eater): 

Chad Rosenthal planned to open his first Chicago restaurant, Lucky Well, in March 2020, but the pandemic forced him to concentrate on his barbecue spots in Pennsylvania. Rosenthal still intends to open his barbecue inside the Roosevelt Collection, the shopping center and apartment complex in the South Loop, but it’s going to take time.

“It’s going to be more like a QSR (quick-serve restaurant),” Rosenthal says. “It might not happen until next year.”

The pandemic forced Rosenthal to reevaluate his priorities, and that means he’s going to scale down his Chicago project; there won’t be live music like his East Coast locations. At the height of the pandemic, expansion wasn’t the first thing on his mind, as he needed to tend this restaurants and workers in Pennsylvania.

Word came down of this potential addition to the Sloop restaurant scene about two years ago, but only a smattering of information has emerged since then.  With the pandemic wreaking havoc on the restaurant business it's not shocking to see this.  

The article makes it seem like there is still some potential, but we'll see if that's just a glass half full mentality.   

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

The Reed at Southbank Gets Permit for Building to Start

Looks like another high-rise is about to go up (via Urbanize Chicago):

The upcoming 41-story residential tower known as The Reed at Southbank is one step closer to rising along the south branch of the Chicago River after scoring its first construction permit this week. 

Crews from developer/contractor Lendlease have been preparing the site at 234 W. Polk Street for several months. The prep work involved shoring up underground tunnels beneath the site, Linda Kozloski of Lendlease told Urbanize in March. The newly issued building permit allows for work to begin on the tower's foundation. 

Designed by architecture firm Perkins + Will, The Reed will eventually rise 447 feet and deliver 224 apartments and 216 for-sale condos—priced from $400,000 to $1.4 million—when it opens in summer 2023. The project also includes a full suite of indoor/outdoor amenities and a riverwalk extension, which will pass beneath the western edge of The Reed and connect to Polk Street and a planned water taxi stop.

We've been pleasantly surprised with how nice the Southbank riverwalk is, so we're all for more - even though it seems like this new stretch will be relatively small.  

Tuesday, June 8, 2021

Insomnia Cookies Now Officially Open at 30 E. Bablo Drive

 Looks like Insomnia Cookies is now officially open in the Sloop:

Congrats and looking forward to trying out this one...

Monday, June 7, 2021

Shooting in Printers Row on Saturday Sparks Scary Scene

What sounds like a scary scene on Saturday in a prominent, highly trafficked area of the neighborhood (via CBS Chicago):
“I saw people running from patios, running inside,” another witness said. “I saw tables getting flipped over.” 

That worker saw the chaos in the 700 block of South Dearborn Street after someone fired one shot, of many, toward a restaurant. 

In the path of the bullet was a patio area where people were sitting. A nearby barrier just stopped it. 

“It’s been so many months of people staying inside and you want to get outside and it’s not safe outside,” the worker said. “It’s just too bad. It hurts.” 

These two shootings add to the 10 this year in the Central (1st) Police District, which includes the Loop, the West Loop Gate, the South Loop, and parts of the Near South Side. That is up from four shootings through this time last year.

Pretty scary stuff.  We say it all the time, but be careful and aware of your surroundings.  That said - we can imagine how it must rattle people to see this hit during such a busy time of the day. 

A reader adds:

Yes, I can confirm that Roots Pizza had a panel of its revolving door shattered, and I saw police searching the sidewalk on the east side of Dearborn St last night around 10:30. They taped off an area from Flaco's Tacos up to the wine shop.

(Hat tip:  AB!) 

Wednesday, June 2, 2021

CMK Companies Looking to Move Forward with 30-Story High-Rise Apartment at 1400 S. Wabash

Apparently the rental market isn't slowing down for CMK - one of the most prolific developers in the Sloop (via Urbanize Chicago):

The zoning applications for new high-rise apartment towers just keep coming. This week, prolific Chicago developer CMK Companies filed paperwork for a 30-story, 299-unit tower at 1400 S. Wabash Avenue in the South Loop.

The project isn't the first residential tower planned for the vacant site. In 2016, the Chicago Plan Commission approved a proposal from American Landmark Properties to construct a 290-foot, 296-unit residential building at this location. The Lucien Lagrange-designed project never got off the ground and the land was sold last year to CMK for $5.9 million.

Based on elevation drawings attached to the zoning documents CMKs plan for 1400 S. Wabash is far more contemporary-looking than its predecessor. The Pappageorge Haymes-designed high-rise will feature a glass and aluminum window wall system on its residential floors and a four-story metal-screened parking podium with space for 110 cars at its base.


Tuesday, June 1, 2021

South Loop Farmers Market is Back and Better than Ever

The South Loop Farmers Market is back and we checked it out this past weekend and things were bumping.  Besides the DJ providing some lively beats, it seemed like our local farmers market had a positive vibe with a lot more vendors than we remembered in the past.  

The neighborhood seemed excited to be out and certainly were out in force.  The cheese stand had a line stretching throughout the park and we might have even seen a vendor selling some newly legalized grass (interesting that that's ok, but why not?).

Anyway, check out the market out every Saturaday through Sept 25th at Printers Row park (632 S. Dearborn).  They also have a Thursday market at 1936 S. Michigan.  You can get more details at their website here.


Thursday, May 27, 2021

Advance Uniform on 13th Street Going Out of Business

 Looks like Advance Uniform is going out of business at their 33 e 13th location:

We've never been in the store, but longtime Sloopin readers (or residents) might remember that this business used to be up at 1132 S. Wabash:

They moved out of this location in 2013 and since then this building has received a major facelift.  The restaurant space is now home to seafood broil restaurant Low Country and the office space above actually housed Pete Buttigieg's Chicago office for his presidential campaign.  

It was a good run for Advance Uniform.  

Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Chicago Native Son and Former Bull, Jabari Parker Emerges as Buyer of Historic House on Prairie Avenue

An interesting buyer has emerged for a historic property in the Sloop (via Chicago Tribune):

Former Chicago Bulls forward Jabari Parker, a native son who led Simeon Career Academy to four straight state championships, paid $2.3 million for an eight-bedroom, 10,660-square-foot vintage mansion in the Prairie District on the Near South Side.

A South Shore native, Parker, 26, began his NBA career with the Milwaukee Bucks and then played for the Bulls for one year. He now plays for the Boston Celtics.

The house is a beaut, but curious to see what his plans are for the prominent property.  If you recall, we posted about this sale back in January and before it was know who the buyer was, the real estate agent said that the buyer "intends to use the house as a single family home".

Welcome to the Sloop Jabari and crew!

(Hat tip: PB!)

Monday, May 24, 2021

Insomnia Cookies Coming Soon to 30 East Balbo

 Dessert fans rejoice - looks like Insomnia Cookies is moving into the Sloop (30 E Balbo Drive):

If you've never heard of Insomnia Cookies it is a hugely popular and decadent shop with locations across the country.  It was founded back in 2003 in Philadelphia according to wikipedia and has been going strong ever since.

Welcome to the Sloop and looking forward to trying some of your deliciousness!