WEST LOOP — Regards to Edith, the latest restaurant from the minds behind Lone Wolf and Bad Hunter, opened Monday in the West Loop's Google headquarters.
Meant to evoke the charm and diversity of the city's Maxwell Street Market, Regards to Edith will offer expensive riffs on classic dishes found at the historic Downtown market, from $16 matzo ball soup with black truffle and foie gras schmaltz or "brown paper" dishes like a $19 Italian beef sandwich, according to a menu provided to Eater Chicago.
Regards to Edith replaces the former Smack Shack in the 1K Fulton building, 326 N. Morgan St. It joins nearby Swift & Sons, Fulton Market Kitchen and Next on the block of the booming Fulton Market District.
Nine-time Michelin-starred chef Jared Wentworth created a menu reflective of Maxwell Street's reputation as the "Ellis Island of the Midwest." Pierogies with trout roe and smoked creme fraiche ($18) and roasted rack of lamb with crispy falafel and tzatziki ($65) are among its featured dishes.
Pierogies with trout roe and smoked creme fraiche at Regards to Edith. [Provided/Heisler Hospitality]
In 20 years of cooking, executive chef Wentworth made a name for himself at restaurants like Longman & Eagle in Logan Square, Dusek's Board and Beer in Pilsen and Promontory in Hyde Park. He joins with Heisler Hospitality, a restaurant group that includes popular bars in Logan Square and Wicker Park including Revel Room and Estereo.
Pulling from the market's nurturing of electric blues, Regards to Edith will play a mix of electric and classic Chicago blues and modern songs. The selections come from Scottie McNiece of Uncanned Music.
"Many Chicagoans are familiar with the open-air street market, but there is so much more that emerged, from the powerful music to the people to the overall sense of community," Heisler Hospitality partner Matt Eisler said.
As for the restaurant's unique name, Eisler and his partner Kevin Heisner said they found an old photograph of Chicago heavyweight contender and fish peddler King Levinsky during their research on Maxwell Street.
The photograph had a handwritten note offering "Regards to Edith."
"We don't know who Edith was, but the possibilities of who she might have been inspired us," the pair said in June.
The dimly lit restaurant seats 110 people in distinct, intimate spaces with rich purple booths, plus a private dining room for 24.
While one-third of the space is separate from Regards to Edith and dedicated to sister bar Prairie School, the restaurant itself has a bar as well. With 27 seats, the long wooden bar will serve up plays on classic cocktails and a wine menu of more than 150 selections.
Regards to Edith will be open from 5-10 p.m. Sunday-Thursdays, closing one hour later at 11 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays. Eventually, owners plan to expand into lunch and brunch service.