Leopold Sold, To Close March 30; New Concept Coming

Mussels at Leopold.

West Town bar and restaurant Leopold will close March 30 after a two-year run, co-owner Christy Agee announced this morning. A new owner (unnamed at this point) will close the restaurant space at 1450 W. Chicago to redecorate and launch a new concept later this spring or summer. Agee, who with her husband Don owns Lincoln Avenue's Witt's, opened Leopold just before New Year's 2011 as a Belgian-themed restaurant, focused on beer and wine-compatible food with a loosely northern European feel (ranging as far from Belgium as pierogi). (We chronicled the opening process for the Reader in an article and video then.) Opening chef Jeffrey Hedin left to join Girl & the Goat last summer, and his replacement, Michael Dean Reynolds, formerly of The Gage and Henri, evolved the menu further toward more approachable continental food, but despite being well-regarded throughout Leopold never fully caught on as a destination spot. This marks the second closing of a European-themed restaurant at the end of this month after the announcement last week that Maison Brasserie would close on the same day.