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What You Need to Know About the Chicago Dining Scene This Week

A massive sushi scene plans for its final days and Shake Shack’s conquering of Chicagoland continues.

Sashimi terrine at Japonais by Morimoto   Photo: Anna Knott

Openings

Shake Shack continues its full-on Chicagoland assault, setting up its third location inside Westfield Old Orchard (4999 Old Orchard Center, Skokie, 847-380-1240). The menu’s mostly the same as their outlets in the Loop and River North, but there are a few exclusive frozen custard concrete flavors, including one with chocolate custard, chocolate cookie dough, caramel, and sugar cone cookie.

Your dreams of enjoying a seafood boil and karaoke in prime Wrigleyville can now be realized with the appearance of Lowcountry (3343 N. Clark St., 773-996-9997), taking over the former Blokes & Birds space. And come the kitchen’s closure at 10 p.m., the picnic tables will be turned into beer pong and flip-cup courts, a time of night that will be known as “Brocountry.”

Pizza Barra (3011 Butterfield Rd., Oak Brook, 630-861-6177) is now firing up pies, pastas, and other Italian fare courtesy of Rich Labriola and Chris Macchia (Coco Pazzo, the Florentine).

It took two years to get everything just right, and now Cantina 1910 (5025 N. Clark St., Andersonville, 773-506-1910) is finally ready to put a farm-to-table twist on regional Mexican fare in a massive space thanks to chef and native Chicagoan Diana Dávila.

Morsels

Due to a family emergency, the Michelin-starred 42 Grams (4662 N. Broadway, Uptown) is temporarily closing down, according to a Tribune report. The tiny space manned by chef Jake Bickelhaupt and his wife, Alexa Welsh, doesn’t yet have a planned reopening date, but we’ll keep an eye out.

Bad news for fans of giant restaurants with spendy sushi, as Japonais by Morimoto (600 W. Chicago Ave., Gold Coast, 312-822-9600), the latest incarnation of 12-year-old Japonais, will close in mid-October. If you’re planning to sneak in one final visit, read Chicago critic Jeff Ruby’s take on the place here.

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