NEAR WEST SIDE — A Wise Owl is planning to perch on Racine Avenue.
The Wise Owl Drinkery & Cookhouse is hoping to open in September at 324 S. Racine Ave.
It's a prime spot off the Eisenhower Expressway and not far from the United Center. But it's sat empty since the short-lived Ethyl's Beer & Wine Dive closed three years ago and Stanley's Kitchen and Tap closed after a few years in business before that. Tutto Bene and Tutto Orsi, family owned Italian eateries, occupied the location for years before that.
Dave Newbart lives just down the street, and says a few places have been in that spot over the years:
According to Wise Owl's Facebook page, owners had permits approved in July and have been doing construction this month.
"We need everyone to keep their fingers crossed the entire month of August in hopes we can open up in September," the Facebook page states. "Good things come to those who wait patiently and see it through. Can't rush perfection."
Its website said the location will be an alehouse and wine bar with a beer garden, and will feature craft cocktails and shared plates with "American flare."
The restaurant hired Enrique Robles as its executive chef.
The restaurant's owners were not immediately available for comment.
On its Facebook page, owners posted pictures of four mini-burgers, which it said were "100 percent grass fed cow beef topped with jalapeno bacon, sharp cheddar and crispy onion strips on a mini pretzel bun... One of our many slider options."
The property has a parking lot and in the past had been a spot where food trucks parked weekly for a popular "Food Truck Thursdays."
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