Pizza & pastries at Chicago & Winchester

MetromixScott Weiner, Vinny & Michelle Garcia, Greg Mohr (metromix.com) 

A Chicago Avenue pizza restaurant from the owners of the Fifty/50 sports bar is on the agenda at Monday's meeting of the East Village Association board. 

A representative of the project will attend the 6:30 p.m. meeting at Leona's Restaurant, 1936 W. Augusta, said EVA planning co-chair Scott Rappe.

Scott Weiner and Greg Mohr tell Metromix Chicago they plan a spring opening for a 200-seat pizzaria at 1924 W. Chicago Ave., with an adjoining Bleeding Heart Bakery coffee shop next door at 1916 W. Chicago.

The location has been on EVA's radar lately. A restaurant at the Chicago & Winchester corner passed a May 2009 vote and city zoning change, only to lose development backing in the recession. It failed review at the start of the year as a potential drycleaning plant, and in 2007 as a condo site.

Roots pizza, with a planned March opening, would serve Quad Cities-style pizza (doughy thin crust cut in strips). Delivery may pose challenges at the site: Traffic on Winchester flows away from Chicago Avenue past a narrow alley. The previous restaurant plan included an agreement with neighbors to forgo side-street deliveries.

Bleeding Heart would serve brunch in the two-story space next door, as well as the organic pastry that Vinny and Michelle Garcia once sold at Chicago and Damen. Among the prospective cafe offerings, according to Metromix: mushroom-polenta eggs Benedict with persimmon Hollandaise sauce.

The Garcias ran a Ukrainian Village bakery for two years before moving their storefront in 2006 to Roscoe Village and expanding last year to Oak Park. In recent cable-TV seasons they've displayed their skills at "punk-rock pastry" in cake and cupcakes bake-offs.
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