The news site of Evanston Township High School's student newspaper

The Evanstonian

The news site of Evanston Township High School's student newspaper

The Evanstonian

The news site of Evanston Township High School's student newspaper

The Evanstonian

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Sam Froum, Arts & Entertainment Editor • December 21, 2023

Fat Shallot comes to Evanston

Sandwich+restaurant+Fat+Shallot+replaces+Old+Neighborhood+Grill%2C+aims+to+build+family-friendly+atmosphere.
Catherine Johnson
Sandwich restaurant Fat Shallot replaces Old Neighborhood Grill, aims to build family-friendly atmosphere.

On August 25, 2021, tragedy struck Evanston.

The kitchen of beloved restaurant Old Neighborhood Grill went up in flames after an accidental fire got out of control. The Evanston Fire Department rushed to the scene as quickly as they could, but it was too late. The kitchen was destroyed, and ONG was forced to close permanently.

For those who grew up in northwest Evanston, ONG was the go-to lunch spot. A mix of cheap, kid-friendly food, a relaxed atmosphere and a central location that was easily accessible by bike or foot made it home to countless post-half-day hangs and last-minute lunch meet-ups. When it closed, many residents felt like an important part of their youth had disappeared.

“I was really bummed. [ONG] was my childhood restaurant. I’ve gone there so many times; I have so many fond memories there,” expresses junior Oscar Gutierrez.

“It was very sentimental to me and all my friends and the community,” junior Owen McElhatton agrees.

For two years, the building remained unoccupied. Residents of northwest Evanston eagerly waited for a new restaurant to open in the space. Now, finally, there will be.

Sam Barron and Sarah Weitz, husband and wife duo and co-founders of popular Chicago-area restaurant chain The Fat Shallot, have purchased the space and will open on Tuesday, Oct. 24.

Evanston residents with young kids, Barron and Weitz know the challenge of finding a family-friendly, sit-down dinner restaurant in the area. With the Fat Shallot, they’re hoping to provide just that.

“We really felt there was a need for a place that was casual and for everybody; the kind of place that we would want to go to,” Barron explains.

In order to create this environment, the restaurant will include foosball, arcade games and much more.

“We are excited to build up the back patio and have bags and all sorts of fun games for people to play outside,” says Weitz.

The Fat Shallot is best known for its classic sandwiches, which people of all ages can enjoy. These aren’t just your everyday sandwiches, however. With their honed culinary skills, Weitz and Barron take them to the next level.

“We try to do sandwiches that are recognizable…but with a little something special, so that they stick out in people’s minds as the best,” states Barron.

If you’re not in the mood for a sandwich, The Fat Shallot will be offering hamburgers for the first time in any of their locations as well as appetizers like cheese curds and nachos.

With The Fat Shallot hopefully opening by the end of this year, Evanston residents are looking forward to picking up a classic sandwich in the near future.

“I will definitely give it a try, and I’m definitely excited for it,” remarks Gutierrez.

Equally enthusiastic, Weitz and Barron can’t wait to serve the community.

“We’re really excited to be a part of the Evanston community,” Weitz expresses, “not just as residents, but also as business owners.”

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About the Contributor
Sam Froum, A&E Editor
Hi, I’m Sam Froum (he/him), and I’m the Editor of A&E and Photo & Art. This is my third year on staff. Previously I was the assistant editor of A&E and a staff writer. I write for the Evanstonian because it allows me to become a better writer and provides opportunities for collaboration with other students. I also run cross country and track and participate in Wildkit Buddies. Outside of school, I like to draw, run and watch TV.
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