HUMBOLDT PARK — A long-awaited addition to Humboldt Park from the owner of Avondale's Square Bar & Grill has finally opened, at least in part.
Half of Humboldt Haus, a liquor store offering hundreds of different kinds of beer, wine and liquor, has opened at 2958 W. North Avenue right across from the park.
The extensive selection of alcohol — some 300 kinds of wine and 400 kinds of beer — is enough to make Humboldt Haus stand out in that part of the neighborhood, but owner Nick Daoud says the best is yet to come.
In the space just east of the liquor store will be a bar with 16 to 20 beers — and sometimes wines — on tap, as well as gourmet sandwiches.
"It's going to be crazy breads, local meats and ingredients, interesting sauces — it'll be a sandwich shop, but it's not going to be your average sandwich shop," Daoud said.
He said he hopes to open that side as soon as possible but is waiting on a patio license from the city.
Neighbors have been eagerly awaiting Humboldt Haus since work started on it last summer, but at least one said she was a little dismayed to see that just the liquor store was open.
"I'm more excited about the restaurant part," said nearby resident Nikki Hernandez. "There are already liquor stores around here."
Daoud said the lack of eateries on that stretch is part of what prompted him to pick that spot.
"We did a lot of research on that location and we think the neighborhood could use it," he said. "There's no food and no real craft bars around there that are walking distance."
Plus, he said, with The 606 and its Bloomingdale Trail coming soon, he thinks residents will crave that kind of thing even more.
"We're trying to bring something a little more upscale to the neighborhood with the trail coming and everything," he said.
Since he is at the city's mercy, Daoud he has no real timeline for the bar opening but hopes it won't be much more than a month or two.
Until then, the Humboldt Haus liquor store is open 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sundays.