Harper Court restaurants near opening

Staff Writer

Two new restaurants will open in Harper Court at either the end of February or early March.

Porkchop, a barbeque and whiskey-focused restaurant, will open at 1516 E. Harper Ct., once construction is finished.

Porkchop’s food truck has been a frequent site on campus in the last year. “It’s going to be something I think Hyde Park needs,” said Ashley Resa, manager of Porkchop. “We hope Hyde Park is ready and hungry. We’ll have plenty of food.”

Porkchop will be open from 7 a.m. to midnight seven days per week. Breakfast will be available in the sit-down portion of the restaurant or to go and include Intelligentsia coffee.

Breakfast options will be focused on brunch items and include build-your-own-omelets and pulled pork benedict.

The lunch menu includes soups, sandwiches, brisket, burgers, fried pickles and other southern staples.

The dinner menu includes southern comfort foods that expand on the lunch menu including beef ribs, rib eye steaks and, Resa’s favorite, southern fried chicken served with sautéed green beans and smashed potatoes.

The bar will include 22 draft beers, all from breweries based in Chicago, and 100 whiskeys, including a few from distillers in the area.

For diners who prefer a lighter fare, Native Foods, a California-based vegan restaurant will open up its fourth Chicago location next door.

Native Foods, 1518 E. Harper Ct., will host a week of parties from Feb. 24 through Feb. 28. Neighborhood diners can enter to win a free meal on nativefoods.com/locations.

Proceeds from alcohol sales the first week will all be donated to different Chicago-area non-profits, owner Andrea McGinty said, though she has not yet decided which ones.

McGinty described Native Foods as a “fast-casual restaurant where everything comes out made to order in under 10 minutes and $10.”

She also said 80 percent of the restaurant’s patrons are not vegans.

There are two days every month where a portion of the restaurants’ proceeds are given to a different local non-profit, usually focusing on kids, community gardens or animal rescue. They also offer regular cooking demonstrations on Saturday morning, usually attended by up to 100 people.

The proteins served at the restaurant will include house-made seitan and tempeh. They will hire local artists to do rotating work inside the restaurant.