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Here's A First Look At The Riot Feast Pop-Up Restaurant Coming To Wicker Park

By Tankboy in Food on Jun 23, 2017 2:09PM

Rendering courtesy Riot Feast

Riot Fest is teaming up with the team that brought you the Saved By The Bell-themed Wicker Park pop-up restaurant to transform the Saved By The Max space at 1941 W. North Ave. into The Riot Feast, beginning on July 8th.

The space is still undergoing construction, but we have a first look at what the restaurant is slated to look like. We also had a chance to chat with Derek Berry, one of the founders of Saved By The Max and a partner in the new endeavor, about the new concept. Berry has been splitting his time recently between Chicago and Los Angeles, where he is currently setting up the West Coast Saved By The Max installation.

While some things will remain the same, executive chef Brian Fisher—formerly of Schwa—will be handling the menu, we were curious how teaming up with Riot Fest’s Michael “Riot Mike” Petryshyn team to create The Riot Feast restaurant came about.

Chicagoist: When did the Riot Feast idea surface? Who came up with it?

Derek Berry: The Riot Feast idea came from our companies' working relationship. What basically started as a joking idea instantly became an actual idea, after one meeting. Once The Max was coming to an end we wanted to replace the concept with something we were as passionate about, and something that we would enjoy going to as customers. The entire idea was a collaborative spit-balling conversation that never stopped, and still continues to happen, to make the Feast the experience we know it will be.

C: Describe the creative process—who was involved? Where do the ideas come from?

Berry: This has been a major collaborative effort thus far. Members of both groups have contributed a lot of their own input and ideas into the concept and execution. The Riot team is a hyper-creative group—which has positioned them to become a Chicago institution—and we've been able to use that with our strong points to create this very unique experience.

C: With Saved By The Max L.A. opening up, how is Brian Fisher dealing with two totally different menus in two different spaces?

Berry: Brian is a creative genius who lives and breathes his art, I think Brian could take on 20 more of he was given the opportunity!

C: Saved By The Max had special guests stars—are there plans in place to bring in surprise appearances from Riot Fest compatriots or special events? I could totally see a GWAR or Andrew W.K. kitchen takeover.

Berry: We're really excited about the guests we've got planned and special events. We're going to be announcing those in waves just like we did with The Max.

C: What is your personal vision for Riot Feats to be a success?

Berry: To create something unique and memorable, where food lovers and Riot Fest fans can unite. We truly just want everyone to come in and leave with a smile ... and feeling very full!

C: When do you guys ever sleep?!

Berry: On flights, if ever!

Starting July 8, Riot Feast will be open Wednesday through Sunday, and will feature reserved seatings at either communal dining or VIP reserved elevated tables. Tickets are on sale now.

Starting at 10 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, Riot Feast will turn into a "a carnival speakeasy," to keep the fun going after the proper dinner service has ended.