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West Loop Summer Restaurant Rundown: Oriole Returns, El Che Launches Pop-Up Argentinian Street Markets

Plus: Chikatana replaced City Tap, and Monteverde and Shake Shack have partnered up for a limited-edition sandwich.

Oriole owners Cara and Noah Sandoval will reopen the newly renovated restaurant next month on on July 3.
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WEST LOOP — With the city fully reopened, new restaurants are cropping up while others are reopening after more than a year of being closed in the West Loop.

Here’s a look:


After being closed for most of last year, acclaimed Michelin-starred restaurant Oriole is gearing up to reopen July 3.

Oriole, 661 W. Walnut St. closed in March 2020 and briefly reopened last fall before closing again. It since has undergone major renovations and now has an expanded dining area, new bar and lounge and a bigger kitchen, the team said.

Owners Cara and Noah Sandoval said the experience will be more personal and interactive where guests will be offered “sips and bites” before being seated for Oriole’s tasting menu. Cocktails from renowned mixologist Julia Momose will be on the menu, as well.

“We’ve always seen the first four years of Oriole as filled with promise,” the Sandovals said. “When Oriole reopens on July 3rd, the restaurant will be that promise fulfilled. This new Oriole is everything we’ve dreamed the restaurant might become, and then some. We’ve never been more excited to welcome friends old and new into our home again.”

Monteverde Chicken Parm For A Good Cause

West Loop Monteverde chef and owner Sarah Grueneberg has teamed up with Shake Shack for a limited-edition sandwich to benefit Inspiration Kitchens.

Credit: Heather Talbert
Shake Shack’s teamed up with Monteverde chef and owner Sarah Grueneberg, chef and owner of Monteverde for a limited-edition menu item to benefit a community organization.

On Thursday for one day only, diners can snag The Monteverde Chicken Parm at Shake Shack, 66 E. Ohio St.

The sandwich features Shake Shack chicken breast topped with Monteverde’s spicy tomato sauce, sliced mozzarella, fresh basil, J.P. Graziano’s giardiniera and buttermilk mayo on a toasted potato bun.

Proceeds will benefit Chicago-based Inspiration Kitchens, which provides free food service training for people experiencing homelessness.  

“We’re so happy to find a fun and delicious way to support Inspiration Kitchens, a charity that’s near and dear to our hearts,” Grueneberg said. “The money raised from the Parm will provide meals, job training and mentorship to the Chicago community.”

El Che’s Argentinean Pop-Up Markets

Credit: Provided
Chef John Manion has launched pop-up Argentinian markets inside El Che Steakhouse.

Buenos Aires street markets are coming to El Che Steakhouse.

Forced to stop its indoor dining last year, chef John Manion created El Che Meat and Provisions, where guests could buy premium beef cuts inside the restaurant at 845 W. Washington Blvd.

Now, Manion is paying homage to San Telmo markets in Argentina by highlighting local vendors. The market will include artisanal goods, wines, dry-aged steaks, cocktail kits to go and a la carte menu items from El Che.

The monthly pop-up will return 11 a.m.-3 p.m. July 10, Aug. 14 and Sept. 11.

Chikatana Opens In Fulton Market

Credit: Chikatana/Facebook
The owners of the Robey hotel have teamed up with chef Guillermo Reyes for Chikatana, a modern Mexican restaurant in Fulton Market.

The owners of the Robey hotel have teamed up with chef Guillermo Reyes for Chikatana, a modern Mexican restaurant in Fulton Market.

Chikatana, 850 W. Fulton Market St., opened last week with contemporary Mexican food, including king crab chile relleno and pato en mole. Reyes previously worked at Mi Tocaya Antojeria and Mercat a la Planxa, according to Eater.

The bar menu includes several tequila, sotol and mezcal cocktails.

After 10 p.m., Chikatana, which replaces City Tap, will offer a late-night menu that includes vegetarian tlayuda and crispy chicharron de queso. 

The owners of the Robey came under fire last year with accusations of racism and sexual harassment. Read more about the new eatery from Eater.

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