So, how ‘bout that Herbert M. Kinsley, eh? Crazy the way he dominates the Chicago food scene!
Restaurant-ing through history takes us back to the gay old 1860s with their profile of Kinsley, the undisputed king of the late-nineteenth century Chicago restaurants. In 1865 he took over the restaurant inside the Opera House, which served well but lost money. Among other things, he ran the first-ever Pullman dining car (on the Chicago-Northwestern line), opened a restaurant in Riverside that failed along with the planned development, and lost his flagship restaurant on Washington Street to the Great Chicago Fire.
In 1874, he opened and quickly closed a fancy restaurant, claiming “The expenses of a fashionable restaurant just now are too great, and the receipts too small, to warrant keeping it open longer.”
The more things change…
Anatomy of a restaurateur: H. M. Kinsley [Restauran-ing through history]