After nearly four months past its original opening date, The Old Plank (2700 N. Milwaukee Ave.) is officially ready for business with a soft opening today. The official grand opening is May 2 but will be open only to VIP members. The sports bar, which joins owner Esam Hani’s empire on Milwaukee Avenue, is a modern Tex-Mex vibe with many TVs, agave-based cocktails, whiskey drinks, locally brewed craft beers and an overload of tacos.
The drinks are handled by Beverage Director Phillip Smith, who has been hard at work hiring bar staff and prepping the menu. A big, red pumping heart is painted on the inside wall to greet patrons. Designed by local designer Simone Shafer, the illustration reads “In the heart of Logan Square,” an appropriate touch that fits with the location of the bar. Shafter also designed The Old Plank menu, which is coming soon.
Hani, who owns six other establishments on the same block, named the bar The Old Plank as a nod to the street’s history, according to Block Club Chicago. Back in the 1800s, Milwaukee Avenue was called Old Plank Road.
The bar space has been dormant for more than a year—Parts and Labor closed in December 2017 and Hani took it over in July 2018. He had hoped to have the business up and running in January, but that did not happen due to construction.
An industry event April 28 gave the neighborhood a taste of Tex-Mex galore. We snagged some good eats and drinks to get you ready for The Old Plank.
Photos: Kate Hamilton
To get friendly with The Old Plank and check out its grand opening, join the VIP list or stop by this week to taste the new taco renditions, sip on whiskey agave cocktails and watch all kinds of sports games, if that is your thing.