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Ruxbin Seeks to Open Wine Shop Upstairs

Cozy Ruxbin goes well with a glass of wine.

Cozy Ruxbin goes well with a glass of wine.Photo: courtesy Ruxbin

Metromix pointed us to a meeting report from the East Village Association from earlier this month at which Vicki Kim, co-owner of hot BYO Ruxbin, presented a plan to open a wine shop. The shop, called Hopscotch, would be on the second floor above the restaurant at 851 N. Ashland.

But don't be in a hurry to check it out, as there are many issues to resolve such as the moratorium on packaged goods licenses in the area and proximity to Wells High School. The question was raised why owners Vicki Kim, Edward Kim and Jennifer Kim (only the latter two of whom are related) didn't apply instead for an "incidental" license (what the city calls a liquor license for a primarily food business), and Vicki Kim responded that the license would require a handicapped-accessible restroom, which would require eliminating too much of the existing seating. (Besides being quirkily contained behind the kind of door normally reserved for darkrooms, the restroom like the kitchen is on a mezzanine level several steps above the dining room.) Such is the price of operating the kind of tiny, cute restaurant everybody says they want more of.

Not entirely incidentally, we were at Ruxbin this week shooting video for the Reader and learned why Ruxbin won't be having outdoor dining any time soon: because there's simply no good way to get food from the kitchen to the front of the building, especially when the entry way is full of customers enticed by the tiny restaurant's recent accolades in Bon Appetit. But they are thinking of offering drinks or simple snacks in front during temperate months, as a way to keep people happy during their wait for a table.

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