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An Authentic French Culinary Experience Within An Exquisite Art Nouveau Setting

2/18/2024

RIVER NORTH:

The renowned French establishment La Grande Boucherie is now open in Chicago’s River North neighborhood with its Parisian dining concept, marking its inaugural venture outside of New York City. This expansive 10,120 square foot restaurant, known for hosting over 10,000 guests weekly at its flagship West Village location since 2016, promises an authentic French culinary experience within an exquisite Art Nouveau setting.

La Grande Boucherie Chicago, led by Corporate Executive Chef Maxime Kien and Chef de Cuisine Michael Woodhal, seamlessly combines the lavish atmosphere of a top-tier steakhouse with the sophisticated charm of a refined Parisian brasserie. The meticulously crafted menu introduces patrons to the diverse realms of French gastronomy, featuring large-format meats, a raw bar, and a selection of both classic and modern French dishes.

Showcasing a comprehensive meat offering, including prime cuts such as Filet de Bœuf and Filet Mignon «Au Poivre», grass-fed ribeye Entrecôte Grillée, and impressive large-format options like Chateaubriand pour Deux and Plateau du Boucher, La Grande Boucherie ensures a feast for the senses. Locally sourced meat and poultry from trusted farms enhance the farm-to-table experience, guaranteeing freshness and quality. The collaboration with local deli Steingold’s of Chicago adds a French twist to their renowned smoked salmon.

Known for their play with acidity and vinegar, La Grande Boucherie elevates flavors using French olive oil and Banyuls, a sherry vinegar variation aged in old barrels exposed to the elements, imparting a unique wood-infused taste. A premium cheese selection imported from France, including varieties like Tomme de Savoie and St. André, adds a touch of sophistication to the culinary journey.

The beverage program, curated in collaboration with Chicago mixologist Tim Williams of Pour Souls, features signature Boucherie cocktails and an absinthe program. The extensive wine list focuses on French wines, with curated offerings from specific U.S. regions, showcasing lesser-known grape varieties and winemakers committed to sustainable and organic practices.

Conceived by founder Emil Stefkov, the La Grande Boucherie concept pays homage to the carefree spirit of La Belle Epoque era, emphasizing elegant craftsmanship in both its cuisine and design. Housed in a unique Art Nouveau-inspired building co-designed by Julien Legeard of Legeard Studio and Stefkov, the restaurant seamlessly blends past and present.

With its two-story, 381-seat layout, 25-foot-tall stained-glass windows, curved ceilings, custom mosaic floors, and a 100-year-old glass mural from Paris, the venue is a testament to the fusion of art and history. The centerpiece, an 82-foot-long racetrack pewter bar imported from France, embodies traditional metalworking techniques, creating a space where historical legacy seamlessly integrates into modern dining, offering patrons not just a meal but a journey into a century-old Parisian establishment.

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