The inimitable Pollock & Ruby over at Chicago Mag drop a bomb today: former Powerhouse chef John Peters is “in talks” with the guys from his old stomping grounds — that’d be Grant Achatz and Nick Kokonas of some cruddy restaurant on the North Side that no one’s ever heard of — to open up an Alinea spinoff!
“Our intention is to open something else in the style of Alinea,” says Peters, who goes with Achatz back to the Trio days. “Not another heavy-hitter restaurant but something in the style of Alinea. We are kind of in limbo with the economy, obviously, but hopefully come February, we will have time to focus on what [Grant, Nick and I have] talked about.”
Let’s unpack this. Something “in the style” of Alinea — where dinner takes 3 hours and the better part of a paycheck, and incorporates techniques more in the line of performance art than your standard-issue square meal — but Peters is thinking it won’t be “another heavy-hitter restaurant”?
So, what are we talking? Blond wood communal seating with a $7 basket of assorted pork-sausage gelees, a $14 smoked trout sandwich on burnt toast topped with juniper sorbet, and cheap-ass Natty Lite? Okay, to be fair, I would totally eat at that restaurant.