Chef Grant Achatz and his business partner Nick Kokonas are actively exploring bringing their progressive Chicago cocktail bar The Aviary to several cities around the world. According to Grub Street, the duo is "aggressively pursuing" a New York City location for the concept, but they've also got their eyes on Miami or South Beach, Los Angeles, Shanghai, Singapore, and Las Vegas. These would be the first projects from the team outside of Chicago.
They have yet to nail down a New York location, but they have checked out a space in the Flatiron Building. Kokonas tells Eater that the team is "in the exploratory phase and nothing more." He adds that "it could take weeks or months, depending on what [they] find from a real estate or luxury property partner perspective — nothing at this time is in any way set to paper." Here's the full Kokonas quote:
The team, which also runs venerable Chicago restaurants Alinea and Next, has previously mentioned that the only concept they can reliably reproduce is the cocktail bar. Kokonas confirms the following:
For the first time ever we are really excited about the possibility of bringing one of our concepts to another location. We have been offered deals all over the place for Alinea — and even a few for Next — but that is against the spirit and requirements of those places. The Aviary is more adaptable to different locales. I can imagine the one in L.A. being very different from the one in NYC or Shanghai or Vegas, and each being true to themselves. Another Alinea serves no purpose — that is the flagship. Another Aviary gives us a chance to explore.
· Grant Achatz 'Aggressively Pursuing' NYC for Aviary [Grub Street]
· All Grant Achatz Coverage on Eater [-EN-]
· All The Aviary Coverage on Eater [-EN-]