Kikko, a basement bar below Japanese-style cocktail bar Kumiko, opening next week


The group behind Kumiko cocktail bar — artistic director Julia Momose, chef de cuisine Mariya Russell and government chef Noah Sandoval — didn’t should dig too deep for his or her latest idea.

Solely a few foot.

“It was 8 to 10 inches,” corrected Sandoval. “It value rather a lot to do, however we expect it’ll be value it.”

What the staff did was excavate Kumiko’s basement, decreasing the ground to create a good quantity of ceiling clearance for Kikko, an intimate 10-seat bar that may supply an interactive cocktail and food expertise.

Kikko will make its debut Might 22. Reservations can be found now by way of OpenTable.

The creation of Kikko will permit Momose and firm to transform Kumiko’s eight-seat bar — previously obtainable by reservation only, and home to Kumiko’s five-course omakase adventure — into a primary-come, first-served area that may supply, but not mandate, a 3-course meals-and-cocktail combination.

“From the get-go, we knew we needed to do something downstairs,” Momose stated. “The thought was to offer extra of a food-targeted counter expertise, where friends can work together with bartenders and cooks getting ready food and drinks. It’s in the fashion of a sushi bar, but offering far more than sushi.”

Kikko will be the new residence for Kumiko’s omakase — a chef’s-selection development of dishes — expanded to eight programs but retaining the unique $one hundred thirty worth. Drinks, which can embrace cocktail, sake and wine pairings (and mixtures thereof), will hover close to the $sixty five mark.

The new area will permit Russell to spread her artistic wings a bit, expanding the overall menu options (anticipate more small-chew dishes and fewer giant plates among the upstairs offerings) and adding more specials. And, perhaps, shaking the notion that she’s merely executing Sandoval’s concepts.

“She’s utterly conceptualizing these dishes,” Sandoval stated. “Ours is extra a partnership than a creator-executor relationship.”

Kikko visitors will enter by way of Kumiko’s entrance (630 W. Lake St.), and entry the basement bar by stairs.

pvettel@chicagotribune.com

Twitter @PhilVettel

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