Wishbone founder Joel Nickson confirmed Thursday that he is moving his southern food icon, a pioneer of the West Loop/Fulton Market District restaurant scene, after 26 years on Washington and Morgan.
The reason? Higher rent.
“We have a location 1/2 a mile to the east lined up but yes, a lot of work and no fun moving,” he told me in a Facebook message. “This neighborhood has gotten too pricey and as you know it is all a percentage battle and when you don’t own you have to ask how much in beans and rice can I sell and pay yourself.
“Anyway it is a challenge but the staff is on board and many of them have been with me for many years so we are not hanging up the pots and pans just yet.”
Wishbone’s potentially getting forced out of its second location in the city had been rumored for months.
Commenters on the Facebook group True West Loop, which reported the closure and move earlier in the week, claim something horrible is coming to replace it:
“Wishbone’s currently proposed replacement is one that’s going to make eyes roll in the West Loop when and if it is announced, as resistance is already building,” one post read.
But Nickson is mum on whoever is taking over and where he is going. He said the move could happen this summer.
“I am thinking late August but maybe sooner,” he said. “I can’t at this time tell you who is coming in. I promised them that they will pick the time to announce.
He also didn’t want to give out his new address just yet.
“I don’t want to say yet where we are going,” he said. “Might jinx the final meeting. I will say it is 1/2 a mile east so not too far hopefully my customers will follow.”