Because Chicago needs another Italian restaurant like a hole in the head, we know you’ve all been waiting breathlessly for famous couple Giuliana and Bill Rancic to announce the name of their forthcoming Italian concept with LEYE’s RJ and Jerrod Melman. And here it is: RPM Italian.
Not to be confused with RL, RM, or RJ Grunts, RPM Italian cleverly incorporates the last names of its partners (the Rancics, chef Doug Psaltis and the Melmans, R.J., Jerrod and Molly). The River North restaurant, set to open in January at 52 W. Illinois, will feature Old World Italian recipes from Giuliana’s mother Mama DePandi executed by Psaltis (also of Paris Club).
Giuliana tells E! News they decided to shy away from using Mama DePandi in the name, since “Mama DePandi’s felt more Old World Italian, and this restaurant is anything but” (read: they want it to draw in the usual clubby River North crowd). Yet, she also says that DePandi will apparently be hanging out the restaurant feeding people because it’s really hip to have your mom around during your hot Saturday night date. Wait, what? As for celeb spotting, the Rancics are set to make numerous appearances at the restaurant for their “reality” show on the Style Network Giuliana and Bill.
RPM Italian, 52 W. Illinois St., Chicago, IL 60654
Melman Brothers Partner with Rancics for Italian Restaurant [Grub Street]
Giuliana and Bill Rancic Unveil Name of Their New Chicago Restaurant [E! News]