'Upscale' lounge and restaurant to replace Cosi in Oak Park

New eatery hopes to open by September

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By Marty Stempniak

Staff Reporter

An upscale lounge and restaurant will be replacing the Oak Park location of Cosi restaurant, 1101 Lake, which has been closed since March.

Property owner Anthony Shaker had originally planned to fill the vacant storefront with a local outlet of the Johnny Rockets burger chain. But the deal fell through, and Shaker put the space back on the market.

An Oak Park resident recently signed a 10-year lease for the space, Shaker announced in a press release on Monday. He describes the new restaurant as “American eclectic,” with a menu that will change by the seasons and focusing on “fresh, farm-to-table, multicultural” dishes. It will include a selection of microbrews and local wines.

Shaker declined to name the owner in the press release, saying he wants to wait until village permits have been issued. He anticipates that the restaurant will open by September.

Reader Comments

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New In Town  

Posted: May 18th, 2011 2:22 PM

@John McCarthy from Chicago, Illinois. Gee whiz, sir. Thank you for making me feel so foolish because I asked a question. However, I do appreciate those who answered it- respectfully.

Maggie from Oak Park  

Posted: May 18th, 2011 12:44 PM

Much good luck and best wishes for a successful business. Blessings to you for opening a new business in town. I hope all will go well for you. May all our Village inspectors help you as opposed to deter you.

Fred Tamburino from Oak Park   

Posted: May 17th, 2011 11:00 PM

wail until the Health dept gets started with the building process. They make you change things 40 times and then they forget what was aproved and what wasn't and they make them put in all new pluming and change everthing that was there from the past tenant!


Posted: May 17th, 2011 10:10 PM

Any one who doesn't want to live in Oak Park shold MOVE OUT. We have too many people complaining about this and that. Be grateful you don't live in IRAQ OR ASIA.

Moving out of OP  

Posted: May 17th, 2011 4:40 PM

@ John MaCarthy: LOVES IT! Too funny, but yet with some truth to it. If Oak Park was such a "Business Friendly" town, why are so many of them moving to FOREST PARK?

Bill Strong from Oak Park  

Posted: May 17th, 2011 3:11 PM

Johnny Rockets? Nothing personal, but with Five Guys a few doors down and Potbelly's across the street in Mr. Shaker's other building, let's be a little more imaginative, OP. Hope the unspecified place hits the mark.


Posted: May 17th, 2011 2:08 PM

I have a business in OP, right on Lake Street and I can't wait for my lease to end so I can close shop. Yes opening was the biggest pain in the neck and I am hoping closing won't be as big a pain.

Don Anderson from Oak Park IL  

Posted: May 17th, 2011 1:26 PM

Oh my! All the complaining I hear! Living in Oak Park is a joy... better than any community I can think of. It is no doubt a challenge to open a business in Oak Park... especially when you decide to use contractors unfamiliar with Oak Park and they try to "slide one past the goalie". However, once you ARE open, you have access to an intelligent, active and affluent community. What else could a business owner want? I love living here I look forward to patronizing this new business.

Renee from Oak Park  

Posted: May 17th, 2011 1:22 PM

It's about time! One thing we don't need is another Italian restaurant.

John McCarthy from Chicago, Illinois  

Posted: May 17th, 2011 1:13 PM

Only someone new in town would ask such a question, NIT. The Doopers now have to have meetings to schedule the meetings that will set the agendas for the focus groups that will meet to form committees to study the viability of a restaurant with a seasonal menu. This will be followed by protest groups demanding special civil rights legislation to be enacted to protect free range chicken eggs from being improperly scrambled. Such are the way of things in Shrub Town...

janice sklar from oak park   

Posted: May 17th, 2011 1:10 PM

@ New in Town, Oak Park is the least business friendly town for miles- the ten year lease will be good because the first year will be taken up getting permits- Ask the Trader Joe's about the He** they went through trying to open.

lucy from oak park  

Posted: May 17th, 2011 12:47 PM

This sounds nice--much better than Johnny Rockets! I hope the new tenant puts the brick oven to use on some freshly made thin crust pizzas! Oak Park needs a "Spacca Napoli" type of restaurant...

Patricia O'Shea  

Posted: May 17th, 2011 12:15 PM

Sounds wonderful

New In Town  

Posted: May 17th, 2011 9:57 AM

Can you please elaborate on your reasons for being unconvinced about this deal, OP Resident?

OP Resident  

Posted: May 17th, 2011 1:26 AM

I'll believe it when I see it.

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