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The Sedgwick Stop Seeks to Be Old Town's 'Cheers'

By Paul Biasco | October 16, 2013 8:29am
 The Sedgwick Stop bar and restaurant will open in November near the corner of Sedgwick Street and North Avenue.
The Sedgwick Stop
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OLD TOWN — A new bar and restaurant called The Sedgwick Stop is prepping to open just steps from, you guessed it, the Sedgwick Brown Line station, and the establishment's owners hope it becomes the neighborhood "Cheers."

"Where everyone knows your name," said Hillary Lake, co-owner of the soon-to-open spot at 1612 N. Sedgwick St.

Lake and Bruce Longanecker Jr., son of the owner of now closed Lincoln Park Market, want the bar to be a no-frills neighborhood spot that focuses on wines, local beers, a whiskey-heavy liquor menu with quality bourbon, and good food.

The space, formerly held by Angelo's Taverna, will have a 60-seat front bar and dining area, a 40-person patio and a back party room for private events.

"I've had several people come by and say 'Please don't be another Italian restaurant,'" Longanecker said. "We just want it to be a cool neighborhood spot."

The bar will feature 14 rotating taps with a focus on Chicago-based and Midwestern breweries.

At least one of those taps will feature a rotation of Chicago nanobreweries such as Lake Effect Brewing.

The Sedgwick Stop's food menu will be available for breakfast, lunch, dinner and late-night service and will focus on elevated American bar food.

It will open at 7 a.m. daily and feature a full-service coffee bar with Intelligentsia Coffee catering to Old Town commuters hopping on the "L," and it will stay open until 2 a.m. every day.

"It’s an all-day affair," Lake said. "You can come in Monday morning at 7 a.m. and get a whiskey along with your coffee."

Whiskey is Lake's thing.

She runs the Chicago chapter of 'Women of Whiskey," an organization dedicated to promoting the preservation, education and enjoyment of the liquor among women, and plans on hosting tastings in the back party room.

The Sedgwick Stop will have a soft opening the first week in November and will open to the general public on Nov. 17.

The hard part between now and then will be deciding on which beers to fill those 14 taps, Longanecker said.

Longanecker, who used to work at his family's Lincoln Park Market, said the closing of the grocery store in the spring pushed his idea to open the bar/restaurant.

"Once the grocery store closed, the plan got a little bit more accelerated," he said.

Over the years, Longanecker and his father built relationships with countless food and liquor distributors, and the younger Longanecker hopes to use those relationships to bring in top quality products for his new businesses.

The long-time connections with wine distributors mean that bar will feature house wines at cheap prices that would rival most bars in the city, Longanecker said.

The space where The Sedgwick Spot will soon open in had been vacant for more than a year before Lake walked by in May.

"I've lived in their neighborhood a block away for 10 years," she said. "When I was walking by and saw a 'for rent' sign, I said, 'Let's go check it out.'"

The owners signed the lease for Oct. 1 and have since been tirelessly working to open up as quickly as possible.

Coming up with a name was easy, given the location.

"It's easy, simple and that's what we want to be," Lake said.