RIVER NORTH — Award-winning chef Rick Bayless is opening a late-night cocktail bar in the basement of Frontera Grill.
The 50-seat bar, called Bar Sótano, is expected to open Nov. 15, according to a Frontera Grill news release. It’ll focus on mezcal and tequila drinks, though Mexican wines and Mexican craft beer will also be available.
Mexican bar food will be served up, with the menu including a charcuterie board, sweet-and-spicy fried chicken, Mexican paella and more.
Customers will enter the bar by going to the alley behind Frontera Grill, 445 N. Clark St., and taking a century-old freight elevator down to the basement. The interior will feature a floor-to-ceiling mural from artist Juan de la Mora.
“Bar Sótano’s lifeline is the vibrant markets of Mexico, where fruit stalls, healthy herb stands and chile vendors swirl in a symphony for the senses,” Bayless said. “The craftsmanship of those who keep these Mexican flavors alive — including those who craft dozens of agave varieties into distillates — is unlike any in the world. Bar Sótano will reflect this side of Mexico’s exhilarating culture.”
The bar will be open 4 p.m.-midnight Tuesday-Thursday and 4 p.m.-2 a.m. Friday-Saturday.
Photos of the offerings: