Savanna Restaurant Bringing Breakfast — And The 'Magic Pancake Man' — To Former Nookie's Spot In Lakeview


LAKEVIEW — Two brothers from Ecuador are opening their third breakfast spot on the North Facet. 

Savanna Restaurant, serving American breakfast with Latin American influences, will open this summer season at 3334 N. Halsted St. in Lakeview. It'll exchange one other breakfast place, Nookies Tree, that closed in 2019.

Enrique Calderon stated he and his brother, Luis Calderon, signed for the area final week. They purpose to open in July. Savanna already has places in West Ridge, 5657 N. Lincoln Ave., and North Heart, 4111 N. Lincoln Ave.

The Calderon brothers grew up on a farm in Ecuador and are self-taught within the restaurant enterprise. 

Luis Calderon stated he got here to the US in 2001 and acquired his first job as a dishwasher. From there, he labored his approach up “little by little, being a busser, meals runner, bartender, every part on the entrance facet.”

Enrique Calderon stated he's “the chef within the again.” He moved to the US in 2005 and discovered to cook dinner whereas working at breakfast locations from the enduring Ina’s to Chicago Waffles. 

At Ina’s, Enrique Calderon was referred to as the “Magic Pancake Man” for his knack for flipping flapjacks.

The brothers opened their first Savanna location in 2016 in North Heart, Calderon stated. The enterprise has its nods to their native nation: The store’s coloration is “inexperienced, similar to Ecuador is,” Enrique Calderon stated. And the identify “Savanna” is a approach to get clients to image the “the massive open land, farms and inexperienced areas the place we grew up,” he stated.

Rising a enterprise of their very own is rewarding after a few years hustling in Chicago kitchens, Enrique Calderon stated. 

“We imagine in our goals,” Enrique Calderon stated. “And we maintain working day-after-day prefer it’s the primary day.” 

Enrique Calderon stated he picked up Ecuadorian, Mexican, Cuban and French recipes whereas cooking at eating places across the metropolis. Many elements for Savanna are sourced from native Ecuadorian grocery shops, Calderon stated. 

Savanna’s most original dish: llapingacho Benedict, an Ecuadorian potato cake served with eggs and hollandaise.  

The brothers determined to increase to Lakeview after listening to lots of their clients lived there, Luis Calderon stated. 

“We’re so excited for the brand new place,” Calderon stated.  “We work so exhausting after we are right here, and now could be the chance to provide some jobs to a different particular person, to allow them to develop with it and have the alternatives we had.” 

Credit score: Enrique Calderon
A llapingacho benedict at Savanna Restaurant

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