Cellar Door Provisions owners Tony Bezsylko and Ethan Pikas change their dinner menu frequently, so you never know quite what you’ll find. The focus is always on natural wine, complimented by many fermentation and preservation techniques. The restaurant makes its own fish sauce, miso and vinegar to use in dishes like marinated olives and bread with briny butter and fermented eggplant dip.
Tasting notes by Amy Cavanaugh, March 2014
Diversey Avenue in Logan Square is fast becoming a restaurant destination. The already-strong lineup of L’Patron, Fat Rice and Masa Azul recently got a new, delicious neighbor in Cellar Door Provisions. Marked by a sign in the window that says C.D.P., the new restaurant may be bare bones in terms of décor (the menu is scrawled on pieces of brown paper affixed to the wall), but it’s serving some of the best bread in Chicago.
Tony Bezsylko, Ethan Pikas and Justin Behlke, former coworkers at the Dill Pickle Food Co-op, change their menu frequently, so you never know quite what you’ll find. Crusty, slightly tangy bread forms the base for tartines, and on my visit I tried one with roasted garlic, oyster mushrooms and sorrel. The bread is also available as a side with butter, and even if you order a tartine, get the bread and butter as well—it’s a reminder of just how great a simple dish can be. Everything is made in-house, and sprouted rye transforms a smoked beet salad with shaved red onions into a surprisingly elegant dish for such a casual spot. At the counter, there’s a little case of pastries, like a perfect canele, its spongy center encased with a crunchy, caramelized exterior. You can buy pastries and bread to go, as well, and it’s not a bad idea to take a loaf home for dinner.