Chicago Restaurateur Expands his Empire with Three New Locations!
French born Bouargoub is the owner of several gourmet southern comfort food, barbecue and whiskey-centric restaurants, called Porkchop, as well as the steakhouse,Chop.
With all of his locations in Chicago, Bouargoub's newest Porkchop recently opened in the suburb of Glenwood. Bouargoub will soon be opening three new Porkchop restaurants in Bolingbrook, Oakbrook and Merrillville, Indiana.
The Bolingbrook Porkchop is expected to open by July in the open-air Bolingbrook Promenade near Ted's Steakhouse. The 2,400-square-
The Oakbrook Center Porkchop location is also new construction via the AMC movie theatre. It is the smaller one of the three, more of a food-court type operation with seating in the common area. However, the menu will be just as extensive as the full-service restaurants offering fried ribs, rib tips, brisket burgers, pulled pork and Southern specialties such as fried chicken, chicken and waffles, gumbo, shrimp po' boys and fried cornmeal-crusted catfish.This location is scheduled to open by end of August. The 1,000-square-
The Merrillville Porkchop is scheduled to open in September and will be located in the Southlake Mall, next to Coopers Hawk. The 4,200-square-
"When my customers come up to me at one of my restaurants and they smile and say how much they enjoyed their meal, nothing makes me happier," said Bouargoub, who holds a degree in hospitality from Paris's prestigious Le Cordon Bleu.
Bouargoub moved to the states - specifically to Maryland - in 2001, and worked as a busboy, a bartender and a server. He said he fell in love with American barbecue the first time he ever tasted it.
In 2004, he moved to Chicago and spent several years as a real estate broker, before opening his first Porkchop in the West Loop in 2011. His dream when he moved to Chicago was to open a restaurant on the well known Randolph Street "Restaurant Row". He says he's currently living his dream!
"I love managing and operating the restaurants, and making sure we do exceed our customer's expectations every day," he said. "It's not easy, but opening new restaurants is one of my favorite things to do."
Porkchop, which Bouargoub describes as "a mashup of the French lust for living in the moment and the quirkiness of rural counter culture," serves lunch and dinner daily and brunch on weekends.
Menu items includea variety of barbecue dishes with a southern twist such as:
barbecue ribs, fried ribs, rib tips, brisket burgers, beef short ribs, barbecue pulled pork and pulled chicken sandwiches. As well as southern comfort foods such as fried chicken, chicken and waffles, gumbo, shrimp po boys, shrimp and grits, fried cornmeal crusted catfish, cornbread, rum raisin bread pudding and bacon maple glazed doughnuts.
The menu also offers small and heavy bites such as; bacon wrapped shrimp, beer battered chicken strips, sausage lollipops, fish, pork or chicken tacos, mac & cheese and pork or chicken barbecue sliders. The restaurants also feature an integrative bar program featuring over 100 of the world's top whiskeys.
Chop, features grass-fed, locally sourced burgers, seafood and steak dishes with a modern twist, including the classic T-bone and steak poutine. "It's a gourmet meal with the focus being on the meat," Bouargoub said.
Bouargoub is passionate about his restaurants, food, drink, and most importantly his diners. He is personally involved in crafting the menu, selecting the whiskeys, and even driving cross country to salvage wood and antique hand saws which decorate his restaurants.
Porkchop's West Loop location recently celebrated five years and is the only late night barbecue and whiskey spot in Chicago and has established a name for itself with its laid-back rock n' roll country house atmosphere, an extensive list of whiskey choices, unique whiskey flights and gourmet comfort food.
Porkchop restaurants are located at 941 W. Randolph in the West Loop, 1516 E. Harper Court in Hyde Park, 555 S. Dearborn in the South Loop, 29 E. Adams in the Central Loop and also at Navy Pier and in the suburb of Glenwood. Porkchop Express (grab and go concept catering to the lunch crowd) is at the Adams and Dearborn locations. Chop is located at 1017 S. Delano Court in the Roosevelt Collection Mall in the South Loop.
Chicagoans can also grab some Porkchop favorites on selected Fridays (from now through October) on their food truck at Daley Plaza, 50 W. Washington St., and also at Willis Tower at the corner of Wacker Drive and Jackson Boulevard. Both locations are open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Whether you're in the mood for chicken and waffles for brunch, a slab of fried ribs for dinner or a late night pour of whiskey, Porkchop is worth checking out. And, with their Porkchop Food Truck in high gear, they can go anywhere and are well on their way! To learn more, visit: www.chicagoporkchop.com and www.chopchicago.com