The space in Hyde Park formerly occupied by A10 has a new tenant — Virtue (1462 E. 53rd St.), an American Southern restaurant from chef Erick Williams. Williams was formerly the chef at mk and has been off the scene for a little while. His restaurant opened last week; call ahead before you go, as it is still adjusting to regular hours.
There was a notable chef change this week: Nick Dostal, who headed the kitchen of Terrace 16 (formerly Sixteen), resigned last week. Dostal has a new job but won’t reveal what it is yet. I can’t say I’m surprised at this news; Dostal took Sixteen to the heights of fine dining, earning the old concept two Michelin stars, and it didn’t seem likely that he’d stick around at the new, casual version of the restaurant very long.
Moving from departures to arrivals: Chef Ozzy Amelotti has joined the team at Carnivale, after helming the kitchen at Vivere in the Italian Village.
And now for the bad news: Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steak House is closing because of disappointing sales, despite last year’s opening of the Esquire Champagne Room.
Boka (1729 N. Halsted St., Lincoln Park) has launched a new dinner series that is worth keeping an eye on. Once a month, chef Lee Wolen will team up with another chef from a restaurant around town to offer a special menu that will cost only $50 per person. The December 11 dinner (with Jimmy Papadopoulos of Bellemore as guest chef) is sold out, but the excitement is just beginning. Expect lots more to come in 2019.
Nick Kindelsperger once again put his body on the line for your eating pleasure. The Tribune reporter ate more than 30 different fried chicken sandwiches to find the very best in the city. Oh, and the very worst.
I’ve read this piece by Thrillist’s burger critic Kevin Alexander at least five times now. It’s an interesting meditation on the power of “best of” lists. Alexander spent a year touring the nation eating burgers to create a definitive ranking, which included a lot of surprises — but his final list may have killed the burger spot he crowned number one. There’s also a Chicago connection: He ranked Mott Street seventh-best in the nation and notes that many regulars now complain about how popular it has become.