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Lincoln Square's New Knife Steakhouse Will Open In September

By Anthony Todd in Food on Aug 10, 2016 2:55PM

One of the dry-aged steaks at Knife. Photo by Eric Craig Studios.

Fork, the popular farm-driven restaurant in Lincoln Square, has been planning to open a sister restaurant for some time. First announced in February, Knife will bring dry-aged steaks and re-inventions of classic steakhouse dishes to the neighborhood.

While we can't stop giggling about the name (since Spoon is already a restaurant in the neighborhood, if they open another spot it'll have to be called Spork), the team behind Fork is renowned for serving up inventive, locally-sourced fare. Fork has won awards for its wine list, topped a list of the best chicken and waffles in Chicago and has survived in a competitive neighborhood for a decade, so clearly owners David and Paula Byers and Chef Timothy Cottini know their business.

The space is a gut rehab of the old Chalkboard space, which was a well-liked French restaurant that closed in 2014 after an unfortunate and brief re-concept into Homegrown, a mediocre breakfast cafe. The space has been empty since then.

At Knife, which opens in mid-September, expect new takes on dishes like the iceberg wedge salad (except made with locally-grown iceberg and topped with Maine lobster), shrimp cocktail, lobster bisque and more. The dish on the menu that has us salivating with anticipation is the oxtail doughnut holes, a savory interpretation of the junk food treat filled with braised oxtail. The restaurant will also offer tableside Caesar salad service, which makes us shiver with glee.

The steaks, of course, will be the primary focus, and Knife will offer a variety of Angus cuts. While they announced that their meat will be bought from "Illinois and Iowa farmers," we look forward to hearing more about their sourcing, given Cottini's local food credentials from Fork. Practically none of Chicago's nice steakhouses source their beef locally, and a neighborhood restaurant doing in-house dry aging is definitely something to pay attention to.

Knife is located at 4343 N. Lincoln Ave.