Tabu, the newest addition to the Atomic Hospitality portfolio, opens Friday, May 20 at 401 N. Morgan Street in Chicago. Tabu brings a take on Latin cuisine and craft cocktails in a West Loop space.
“We wanted to create a concept that doesn't take itself too seriously, but delivers on amazing food and cocktails in a cool atmosphere,” said Pepe Fernandez, general manager at Tabu.
Executive Chef Saúl Román, a Cuernavaca, Mexico native with experience in Mexico City (and previously of Chicago restaurants Zocalo and Artango Steakhouse) draws influence from the cuisines of Mexico, Spain, Colombia, and more. Guests will be offered starters like Román’s Lobster Flautas, made with smoked gouda, red cabbage and lime serrano crema, Grilled Octopus made with crispy Forbidden Rice, manchamanteles (a rich sauce that cheekily translates to “tablecloth stainer”), grilled pineapple, and charred lime and the appropriately named Queso Fundido Supremo, made to evoke a Supreme Pizza with a Latin twist.
Chef Saul offers takes on tacos, including a Shrimp Po’ Boy, Korean Sticky Mushroom, and the Que-FC fried chicken taco with tamarind gravy, aji amarillo aioli. Chef Saul’s tortillas are hand-pressed.
Tabu offers an array of dishes, including salads, mains, and desserts. They offer Churroulette, an assortment of housemade churros for the table, but in Tabu fashion one of these churros will be laced with habanero. Guests can also play with fire by selecting from one of Tabu’s four housemade hot sauces varying in spice from their Gringo Serrano to the Beso del Diablo, which is made from habanero, arbol, and ghost peppers.
Tabu’s food offerings were designed to pair with its beverage program. Guests can try one of their many agave flights, order showpiece cocktails like the whimsical (and blue glitter embellished) Tijuana Unicorn Show, which features Creyente Mezcal, lemon, and prickly pear. Other spirits will also get their time to shine with cocktails like the Unholy Water, featuring Havana Club Rum, and the Sunrise over Jalisco, Tabu’s take on a deconstructed Tequila Sunrise. They will also have a curated wine list, hyper focused on Pan-Latin varietals, as well as a selection of draft and bottled beers.
Tabu has plans to expand the concept this summer with the addition of an 8,000 square foot rooftop popup with views of the City’s skyline.
Tabu is located at 401 N. Morgan St., in the West Loop with 160 seats in the restaurant and lounge. Tabu will be open Tuesday and Wednesday 4pm to 12am, Thursday and Friday from 4pm to 2am, Saturday from 4pm to 3am and Sunday from 4pm to 10pm.
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