Hendrickx Belgian Bread Crafter (100 E. Walton St.; 312-649-6717), a Belgian bakery that two native Belgians opened this past Wednesday, came to Chicago via the tropics. “A lot of our customers out there were from Chicago, and when we wanted to leave the Bahamas, they said, ‘Why don’t you open something in Chicago?’ And here we are,” says Dominique Schewebach, a co-owner. (As if coming from the Bahamas weren’t already posh enough, the baker/partner/namesake, Renaud Hendrickx, was the chef on a yacht in Cannes before that.) Some of their wares:

  • A humongous loaf of Belgian bread. “The whole loaf is more than seven pounds,” says Schewebach. Also available in halves, quarters, and eighths.
  • A bread made with Belgian white chocolate, which in turn is made with Belgian pearl sugar.
  • Fresh croissants and Belgian muffins with Belgian chocolate, dark and white.
  • Belgian coffee: “a cup of coffee stronger than a regular American coffee but not as strong as espresso,” says Schewebach.

Schewebach says they came to Chicago for more culture and more weather. Hopefully May hasn’t given them any second thoughts.