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John Kim’s newest Evanston business brings a local connection that many Evanston residents should recognize. On June 12, Mr. Kim along with Chicago chef and Evanston native Brian Huston, opened Boltwood, a restaurant that serves farm-to-table, eclectic American cuisine. Named for Henry Boltwood, the first principal of Evanston Township High School, the restaurant opened in the space that Pan-Asian restaurant LuLu’s, an Evanston staple for 21 years, vacated when it closed in February. Boltwood opened in just four months after LuLu’s closure and celebrated its opening with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on June 26.
Boltwood is also the name of one of the high school’s four wings, so anyone familiar with ETHS will recognize the name. Mr. Kim, who owns Other Brother Coffeehouse on Sherman Avenue and co-owns Brothers K Coffeehouse on Main Street, decided with Mr. Huston to lease the former LuLu’s space immediately after it became available.
Mr. Kim says he and Mr. Huston are excited to offer Evanston a restaurant with a variety of fresh food.
“The menu changes daily,” he said. “It depends on what Brian finds at the farmers’ markets.”
Mr. Huston’s plan is to visit two farmers’ markets each week, Green City Farmers’ Market in Lincoln Park and the downtown Evanston Farmers’ Market, and decides which food to serve. Mr. Kim says he hopes that farmers will eventually come to him with food they would like him to serve.
Using the Evanston market is one way that the restaurant hopes to identify with the Evanston community. Another way is with the name.
“We had 100 names in a hat, and we kept coming back to Boltwood,” Mr. Huston said. “It is unique and we want to embrace Evanston.”
The two co-owners are not the only ones excited for by the prospect of a restaurant that embraces the City. Mayor Elizabeth Tisdahl attended the ceremony and said she is thrilled about the town’s newest eatery.
“I’m very happy [it is] opening in Evanston,” she said.
Mr. Kim said he thinks Boltwood can become a popular place to eat in Evanston, much like Lulu’s was before: “We’re excited to start serving the community and to be here for a long time.”
Boltwood only serves dinner now, but Mr. Kim said that he and Mr. Huston plan on adding lunch service in the fall. The restaurant currently opens at 5 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday.