LINCOLN PARK — Scoot over, North Avenue Beach House. The Shore Club has opened just up the Lakefront Trail, in the nick of time for this weekend's Air & Water Show.
Located between the soon-to-be-divided pedestrian and bike paths at 1603 N. Lake Shore Drive, the Shore Club has an eight-year lease with the Chicago Park District and its concessions firm to create an upscale venue, in contrast with the more plebeian Beach House.
It has three segments: a patio open to anyone stopping by for a break on the beach, an enclosed restaurant also offering a "country-club-style" Sunday brunch and an "oasis" with cabanas, sunbeds and daybeds.
"The concept of Shore Club began with a strong desire to create an elevated hospitality experience on North Avenue Beach,” said Robbie Schloss, one of the four local owners and partners, joining Lisa Jaroscak, Nicholas Thayer and Bill La Macchia Jr. “We are excited to be able to offer a new dining option, one that we think will become the new 'it' place for those looking to relax and enjoy on the beautiful Chicago beaches.”
"I started this two years ago," Jaroscak said at an invitation-only opening Monday evening. "I can't believe I'm standing in this place right now."
The Shore Club will be a seasonal restaurant open May-October. But for the short term it looks designed to last.
The 4,500-square-foot patio offers a lunch and dinner menu for those just stopping by.
Reservations are recommended for the 4,800-square-foot enclosed restaurant, with a Mediterranean menu ranging from an $18 charcuterie board, $26 lobster roll and $25 beef tenderloin to a $14 beet pate, $14 Thai chicken wraps and $17 shrimp and scallop ceviche.
Reservations are required for the 3,500-square-foot "oasis," with its cabanas and sunbeds, and with a accompanying menu featuring a $65 tuna, shrimp and scallop ceviche served with grilled shrimp wonton planks, cucumber rounds and seeded crackers, $55 cabana skewers and fish tempura lettuce wraps at market price for whole red snapper.
The restaurant will have a ticketed $35 Sunday brunch, served "country-club style" with various buffet stations.
But not this weekend, as the Shore Club is offering high-priced packages for ground-zero seating at the Air & Water Show ranging from $125-$750.
It's also taking reservations for private events, including weddings.
Otherwise, hours are 11 a.m.-10 p.m. weekdays, 9 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturdays and 9 a.m.-8 p.m. Sundays, with brunch running until 2 p.m.