“There will be a menu section dedicated to foie gras,” says Jason Paskewitz, the chef/owner of the Blanchard (1944 N. Clark St., Lincoln Park, no phone yet), his French restaurant he plans to open in the spring of 2015.
Paskewitz, formerly of Gemini Bistro and Rustic House, still hopes to deliver classic French dishes, as when he first announced the project, but in modernist renditions. For example, riffing on the classic blanquette de veau, Paskewitz might substitute veal short rib and add green cauliflower, baby carrots, edible flowers, and microgreens. And several spins on foie. “We will have some fun with foie gras, without a doubt,” he says.
As the decor shapes up, Paskewitz now estimates the room will seat about 100. Seven counter stools (no reservations for those seats) will face a show kitchen. Outdoor seating wraps around the corner of the building to abut the cul-de-sac at the end of Lincoln Park West, a bucolic little hideaway. “I’m going to light up the trees,” Paskewitz says. “The pathway there is already cobblestone. The city has got these old streetlights that run through the plaza there. It’s like eating in the middle of Central Park.”
The marble bar features wrought iron reclaimed from balconies in New Orleans, and the soffit above the chef's counter is framed in French Quarter shutters. Nice that they soffit to reuse those.