DOWNERS GROVE – Eight months after Carlucci restaurant in Downers Grove closed its doors, there are plans for a new eatery at the Butterfield Road location in the northwest corner of the village.
The Downers Grove Plan Commission on Oct. 1 unanimously recommended approval of a proposal for the construction of a Cooper's Hawk Winery & Restaurant at the site at 1801 Butterfield Road. The plan will now be considered by the Downers Grove Village Council.
Carlucci closed Feb. 18 following a 15-year run in the village.
Plans call for Carlucci to be demolished and a new 12,077-square-foot, two-story restaurant to be built in its place, according to a report prepared for Plan Commission members.
“The new Cooper’s Hawk Winery and Restaurant consists of tasting, bar and dining areas,” the report stated. “The first floor will have an outdoor patio. The much smaller second story will have a second bar and interior dining area along with an outdoor terraced patio screened by a low wall and planters.”
Carlucci founder Joe Carlucci previously said in a Feb. 12 news release that he sold his restaurant to a "much-respected and recognized brand." He did not identify the brand at the time.
Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurants has 11 locations in Illinois, including Oak Park, Naperville and Burr Ridge, in addition to a new location under construction in New Lenox, the village report stated.
The restaurant group is headquartered in Countryside, but it is attaining a national profile with an increasing presence in the Midwest, as well as Florida and Virginia along the East Coast, according to the report.
The first Carlucci restaurant opened 30 years ago on Halsted Street in Chicago, and some of the restaurant’s original employees came to work at the Downers Grove location after it opened 15 years ago, the release stated.