Chicago’s upcoming Italian culinary stop is UMMO

Chef Carlos Gaytán and SOMOS Hospitality bring a unique artistic Italian eatery, UMMO, to Chicago’s River North.

May 10, 2023: Celebrated Chef Carlos Gaytán, and the team behind famed restaurant Tzuco, will unveil Italian flavors in a spectacular, artistically created space in River North, called UMMO. Tzuco, which opened in 2019, has established itself as a destination for locals and tourists looking for Chef Gaytan’s native Mexican cuisine effortlessly graced with French flavor, earning the restaurant a semifinalist nod for Best New Restaurant by the James Beard Foundation. Expanding its experienced arm into the region, the SOMOS team brings a new inventive Italian cuisine under Chef José Sosa’s seasoned supervision. 

UMMO Chicago

Germán González, Principal/Co-Founder of SOMOS Hospitality, said, “This is an exciting time to expand our presence in Chicago. The downtown Chicago community has been so good to us, and we see a distinct growth opportunity for Hubbard Street. It is ready for a fine-casual concept of this kind, and we are proud to be among fellow business owners working collaboratively to bring exciting culinary talent and even more vitality to the area.”

Helmed by Mr. González and Chef Gaytán, with food by Chef Sosa and design by Karen Herold of Studio Creative K, Ummo will open in July 2023 at 22 West Hubbard Street. A soon-to-be named, second-floor social room promises to be a laid back locale for good times and community connection. It’s perfect for a retro-inspired aperitivo hour or post-dinner fun. 

Chef Sosa’s cuisine will bring the unique taste and traditions of Emilia-Romagna in the north and Puglia in the south with seasonal ingredients, colorful farm-fresh vegetables; hearty proteins; delicate seafood selections; and more. Patrons can dig into an eclectic range of dishes that have ingredients sourced from Italy, the U.S. and other parts of the globe. Ingredients, in chef’s opinion, are the protagonists of dishes working their delectable magic as they approach their full potential, and these are certain to take the center stage in Ummo’s cuisine.

UMMO Chicago

Derived from the word fumo in Italian, which translates to “smoke”, UMMO gives a spirited nod to live fire cooking, which will play an integral role in many of the restaurant’s signature dishes. 

Ummo is a haven skillfully designed to celebrate Italian feast, art, music and storytelling. The space designed with modest tones of sage, tan and brown, will invite guests into an open-layout dining room that seats 100 and an intimate bar for 12. Ombre herringbone flooring, custom crafted by Italian-based Diesel, a stunning copper countertop, unique sculptures, and vintage jazz prints from musical festivals in Italy enhance the visual experience. 

The upstairs space will feature private dining experiences for 16 guests, a gaming area and a bar. The interior highlights a disco and modern Italian aesthetic with an immense, back-lit retro installation.

- By Pritha Debroy

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