Super Hot Opening! – Trenchermen
If you can believe it, I haven’t been to Trenchermen yet… and it’s been open for almost 2 weeks. I know. Absurd. But knowing the background of the guys that opened it, and having tasted their food, you’d better believe it won’t be long before I’m there. Anyway, it’s always good to give a restaurant a month or so to work out the kinks. I’m usually just not that patient.
Here’s all the info you could possibly need on the place. (I’ve bolded the most important parts for ease of reading.)
Trenchermen [def: 1."a person who enjoys food; hearty eater and drinker]
Trenchermen restaurant, the unexpected partnership between award-winning chefs and brothers, Michael (Blackbird, wd~50) and Patrick (Signature Room, Four Seasons Hotel, Everest) Sheerin with local restaurateur Matt Eisler (Nightwood, Bangers & Lace, Bar DeVille) and designer Kevin Heisner (Nightwood, Bangers & Lace, Bar DeVille) opened in Chicago’s Wicker Park (2039 W. North Avenue) July 12th 2012.
Creatively retooling the ubiquitous chef-driven concept, this local spot aims to integrate the best of both casual and fine dining experiences with a menu of familiar flavors presented in an unexpected manner. Having remained close culinary collaborators, all while comparing notes from their divergent paths, brothers Michael and Patrick serve as co-chefs of the Trenchermen kitchen. Located in a city with a reputation for both its experimental cuisine and its Midwestern farm-to-table approach, the Sheerins’ culinary philosophy finds the balance between these two ends of the spectrum. Inspired by the sense of community created by early 20th century beer halls, the restaurant serves as at once a destination spot and neighborhood hub, a gastronomic adventure and a casual place to meet up with friends for a meal.
Trenchermen’s menu changes seasonally, not only showcasing organic ingredients at their peak but also displaying the Sheerins’ high level of creativity. Inspired by the local farms and markets from which the menu is crafted, Trenchermen offers inventive, worldly dishes that pay homage to Midwestern ingredients, yet present them in unique, unexpected ways, such as Pickle Tots – Chicken Breast Bresaola, Red Onion Yogurt, Scallions and Sepia Noodles – Avocado-Chive, Pickled Watermelon, Garlic. Larger format dishes pair expertly prepared proteins with the freshest seasonal produce and feature the bold, unconventional flavor combinations that have become the Sheerins’ signature, such as Smoked Sturgeon – Haricot Vert, Cherries, Chicories, Chocolate Malt Granola and Aged Pekin Duck Breast – Rhubarb Umeboshi, Fried Rice, Kimchee Mortadella, Red Bean Paste, Nasturtium.
Helmed by beverage director Tona Palomino (wd~50), Trenchermen’s cocktail list ranges from the crisp, refreshing Green Hornet – Celery Gin and Tonic to the latest iteration of an assertive, layered drink Palomino originated at wd~50, Heart of Darkness II – Rye, Yellow Chartreuse, Amaro, Smoked Bitters.
Located inside Chicago’s historic North Avenue Bath House, Trenchermen incorporates contemporary architectural elements into industrial age design in the 82-seat restaurant and 60-seat bar. Showcasing respected designer Kevin Heisner’s authentic craftsmanship, the décor utilizes traditional materials in new ways, featuring modern interpretations of vintage pieces throughout the 5,700 square foot space. Custom furniture and millwork such as an inventive tap beverage system, combined with found and salvaged items, play to the high contrast between old and new. Organically bringing together both form and function, all facets of the restaurant are based on the unexpected juxtaposition of artistic precision and casual ambiance – offering a new Trenchermen experience.
Currently Trenchermen is open Monday through Saturday; hours of opening operation are Monday through Thursday 5:30 p.m. to 11:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday 5:30 p.m. to 1 a.m. For more information, please visit www.trenchermen.com, or call (773) 661-1540.