Chitown's wait for Marcus Samuelsson's new seafood restaurant C-House in the Affina Hotel is almost over. The opening date has been set for Saturday April 26, 2008. Mark it on your calendar and do click through to the press release for all the details.
UPDATE 4.1.08: The opening date has moved forward to sometime in May.
C-House from Chef Marcus Samuelsson to Open in April 2008
Marcus Samuelsson to open C-House, an
American Seafood House at the Affinia Chicago
Chicago, IL (March 5, 2008) – Together with Townhouse Restaurant Group, acclaimed Chef Marcus Samuelsson brings an exciting new seafood restaurant, C-House, to the Affinia Chicago this April. With his characteristic emphasis on fresh, local ingredients, Samuelsson is stepping outside of the Scandinavian style he is so well known for and offering up a new model for the American Seafood House. The restaurant will be located on the ground floor of the 215-room hotel at 166 East Superior Street.
C-House represents Samuelsson’s first foray into the windy city and it is defined by equal parts adventure and tradition. The space is designed by Arthur Casas the prolific Brazilian architect who has shaped some of São Paulo’s most fashionable addresses. It is characterized by a meeting of sleek, modern lines and rustic, organic materials. It is appropriately clean and open - a foreshadowing of the menu. The space will feature a large, prominent raw bar, at which guests can sit and view the preparation of their menu choices. The open kitchen, located just beyond the raw bar, can be viewed from various points throughout the restaurant. The seafood-centric menu is echoed in nautical photographs that have been thoughtfully placed throughout the chic and sprawling space.
In addition to the main dining room, the restaurant will also feature a sophisticated and secluded rooftop lounge, which will offer a slightly pared down version of the main menu and an opportunity to enjoy Samuelsson’s cuisine in a relaxed and conversational setting. C-House will also provide the hotel’s room service and catering offerings.
In an effort to continue to diversify his culinary resume, Samuelsson is taking the traditional American Seafood House and adding his personal touch of refinement, sophistication and simplicity. “The focus is on the ingredients,” he notes. This fact is evidenced throughout the menu, but should not minimize the thought and creativity that have gone into choosing those ingredients and their various accompaniments. A growing list of relationships with reputable vendors and purveyors throughout the country and the world have made it possible for Samuelsson to make his choices based on the best available produce, seafood, poultry and meats. Never compromising quality for availability, he brings his commitment to this new addition to his growing list of esteemed establishments.
The C-Bar reinvents the typical expectation for what a raw bar should be. It includes some standard favorites such as Little Neck Clams, Lobster, Stone Crab Claws and a robust selection of Oysters from both East and West Coasts, but it also offers an opportunity for heightened adventure with Abalone, Sea Urchin and Sweet Shrimp. In addition to the shellfish offerings, there are a number of notable sashimi-style, marinated options like Fatty Tuna with Pine Nuts, Fluke with Iced Melon, Spanish Mackerel with Citrus and Cured Beef with Sweet Soy.
In keeping with the traditional Seafood House approach, the entrée menu will include a running list of fresh fish, which can be grilled, roasted or steamed and served with the guest’s choice of sauce, ranging from salsas and vinaigrettes, to classics and chutneys.
Samuelsson also presents an interesting selection of small and large plates in addition to the fish menu. Small plate options include: Baby Sweet Shrimp Ravioli with Tomato and Parsley, Seared Beef Carpaccio with Pickled Vegetable Relish and Grilled Scottish Langoustine in Coconut Saffron Broth. Ginger-Scented Crispy Lobster Tail with Roasted Wild Mushroom and Grilled Dry-Aged NY Strip with grilled Belgian Endive and Pear give the large plate selection character and diversity of choice.
The wine list is global with a particular emphasis on American vineyards, and thanks to Samuelsson’s reverence for the pure flavors of the sea, there will be an abundant selection of cool and crisp white, sparkling, and light red wines. The list has been carefully cultivated to complement Samuelsson’s menu.
C-House represents the next step in Marcus Sammuelsson’s epic culinary journey and is his homage to the sea. There is little doubt that C-House will soon be counted among the very best American Seafood Houses.
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Marcus Samuelsson is chef and co-owner of Aquavit, Riingo and Merkato 55 in New York City. At the age of the 37, he is the youngest chef ever to receive two 3-star reviews from The New York Times. Samuelsson is a two-time James Beard Award-winner – Rising Star Chef in 1999 and Best Chef: New York City in 2003. Samuelsson has been featured in numerous publications including Gourmet, USA Today, Food & Wine, and Bon Appétit. In addition to hosting his own show, “Inner Chef” on the Discovery Home Network, Samuelsson has appeared on ABC’s “Good Morning America”, “The View”, and “LIVE with Regis & Kelly”, NBC’s “TODAY” show and Martha Stewart Living Television, CNN, The Food Network and several New York television programs. He was the third chef ever to write for The New York Times’ “Chef’s Column,” and is a contributing editor to Savoy magazine. He is author of three cookbooks including The Soul of a New Cuisine: A Discovery of the Foods and Flavors of Africa (Wiley, Oct. 2006) which won the James Beard Award for Best International Cookbook in 2007.
Affinia Hotels, with prime locations in New York, Chicago and Washington, D.C., are designed to provide business and leisure guests with an experience of total customized comfort. Operated by Denihan Hospitality Group, a privately-owned company with more than 40 years of hospitality management expertise, Affinia Hotels is a proud member of a worldwide alliance of hotels including Joie De Vivre in the United States, Thistle Hotels in the United Kingdom, Rotana Hotels in the Middle East and First Hotels in Scandinavia. For more information, visit www.affinia.com or call 1-866-AFFINIA.