Chicago magazine has an item about someone opening a charcuterie and cheese-focused wine bar opening in the 1400 block of south Michigan in May. And Chicago magazine has an item about a cured meats and cheese-focused tavern opening in the... 1400 block of south Michigan in May. It's 2012's most oddly specific trend, apparently. The first one is called Square One, at 1400 S. Michigan, from Alex Hernandez, the owner of Waffles (who's also a manager at Japonais), described as "a warm-wood, aged-leather wine bar [with] a simple menu of charcuterie, cheeses, and spreads." The most novel thing about it is that it will have wine stations allowing self-service pours, which is kind of futuristic.
There's nothing futuristic about the second one, from Mainstay Hospitality (Chicago Firehouse), which is taking over the former Grace O'Malley's space at 1416 S. Michigan to open City Tavern. The theme will be suggestive of New England taverns of the Revolutionary War period, with a coal fireplace. The menu again includes cured meats and cheeses as well as a dozen "simple but elegant" entrees, according to chef Kendal Duque (also Chicago Firehouse). Well, if nothing else you can say that the idea that the South Loop can support a food scene is getting taken more seriously all the time. [Chicago via Sloopin']