The Chicago-Evanston border along Howard Street near the north end of the Red Line has seen a lot of new business recently, as the city of Evanston has helped out with financing and red tape. Still to come on that strip is Peckish Pig (623 Howard St., Evanston, no phone yet), a restaurant and brewery shooting to open this month from the husband-and-wife owners of Towbar in Rogers Park.
Peckish Pig will seat about 140 diners (300 when the patio's open) eating from a menu offering the likes of house-smoked and fried ham hocks with salted-caramel drizzle, and tuna Wellington, in which tuna is wrapped in mushroom-sesame-honey pâté and phyllo. The 1,500-square-foot brewery space sits across a 3,000-square-foot enclosed patio from the restaurant.
Debbie Evans, the wife half of the pair, cooked at Tommy Nevin’s Pub in downtown Evanston before she and her husband, Jamie, opened the Celtic Knot Public House a few blocks away. When the Evanses had the Celtic Knot on the block, the city of Evanston approached them to join in the revitalization project on Howard.
To tide them over financially while working on Peckish Pig, they signed on to revamp the former Charmers Cafe near the Jarvis Red Line stop into Towbar, a soups, salads, and sandwiches spot that opened in June. Now that Towbar is up and running, the couple hopes to do the same for Peckish Pig in the next few weeks.
Debbie Evans will cook. “I am the chef,” she says. “I am like master of all trades. Jack of nothing.” Nicely formulated.