Chef and MasterChef judge Graham Elliot announced today that he is shuttering his namesake Chicago restaurant, Graham Elliot. Eater Chicago reports that Elliot plans to relocate and reopen the restaurant with an entirely new concept. The fine-dining restaurant is known for its multi-course tasting menu, and for its critical success: it has two Michelin stars and just last August earned a three-star review from food critic Phil Vettel of the Chicago Tribune, who wrote, "most dishes flat-out rock." The last day of service at Graham Elliot will be December 31.
Elliot tells the Chicago Tribune: "I want to do something cool and different." And that "something" will be at a much smaller venture than the 6,000 square foot Graham Elliot, slotted to open in Spring 2014. Until Graham Elliot closes, the chef plans to offer one menu, with favorite dishes from the past, and a glimpse into what the future restaurant might serve. Tweets Elliot: "All good things come to an end; all great things evolve. My heart is in Chicago, and this is where I'll continue to live and cook." Soon Elliot's heart will also be in Greenwich, CT where he is planning to open a new restaurant this Winter. Below, the statement from Graham Elliot's press reps on the closure:
"The concept of evolution is something that's incredibly important to me in all aspects of my life. For example, since opening my namesake restaurant in Chicago in 2008, the vision has continuously evolved. What started out as a more casual dining experience, eventually became the two-Michelin star tasting menu format you see today. And now we're evolving yet again.
"Chicago will have a new Graham Elliot dining experience come spring, where we build on what we've achieved over the last five years here in the Windy City. In preparation for the new concept, we'll have our final service at 217 West Huron on December 31, 2013, a New Year's "Evolution" of sorts. Our final menu at West Huron will not only feature our greatest hits from the past, but will also offer your first glimpse into what you'll find at our new venture in 2014. We've saved the best for last so join us as the evolution begins. Exciting times call for exciting measures."
· Graham Elliot to Shutter, Reconcept at New Location [-ECHI-]
· Graham Elliot to close after New Year's Eve, reconcept for 2014 [Chicago Tribune]
· All Graham Elliot coverage on Eater [-EN-]