Spanish Restaurant Plans Debut in Chicagoland
The high energy, sleek restaurant and lounge El Tapeo, its name originating from the local Spanish term Vamos de tapeo, will open July 31 at Chicagoland’s newest luxury hotel, Le Méridien Chicago-Oakbrook Center, a Rockbridge portfolio property, located at 2100 Spring Road in Oak Brook.
The 58-seat restaurant will feature authentic Spanish cuisine created by culinary artist and Chicago native Chef Franco Diaz (St. Regis Bal Harbour Florida, St. Regis Aspen Colorado, St. Regis Princeville Kauai, The Drake Hotel, Peninsula Hotel Chicago).
Located on the ninth floor of the hotel, El Tapeo boasts breathtaking views of the city with floor-to-ceiling, wrap-around windows. In the refined 25-seat lounge and intimate 12-seat bar, guests can enjoy freshly made handcrafted cocktails and light tapas style appetizers.
One of Chef Diaz’s passions is to respect the quality of ingredients, understanding and using the best products available in his dishes. The menu provides a taste of the uncommon as Chef Diaz infuses the exploration of new cultures into his art. “My hope is to transform the traditional dining experience,” says Chef Diaz. “I strive to evoke the guest’s senses with my contemporary cuisine.”
El Tapeo’s menu will consist of tapas style dishes and main course dishes including Croquetas de Marisco (crispy shellfish fritters and piquillo aioli), Paella de Langosta (bomba rice, Maine lobster, spicy chorizo, mushroom, mussels, lemon, and garlic aioli), Chuletero Ibérico (grilled Ibérico pork chops and mojo verde), and Carne Asada (waygu skirt steak, arugula, manchego, and piquillo pepper), and a selection of desserts.
The master mixologist will also shake things up with a selection of fine Spanish wines and champagnes by the glass and a selection of local, domestic, and international beers by the bottle.