The owners of and Standard Grill are trying their hand at high-end dining.
Just northwest of the Clarendon Hills border, Bakersfield opened at 330 E. Ogden Ave. on May 1 across the street from Standard Market.
The restaurant, named after its owners' hometown in California, has been received well by the community, according to Ken Tsang, marketing director for Standard Market.
“In this stretch of Ogden there aren’t a lot of high-end eateries,” Tsang said.
Tsang said Bakersfield’s goal is to become a versatile restaurant that families, couples, coworkers, and loungers can all enjoy.
The restaurant features a wide-open kitchen and a naturally lit dining area. There is a full bar that features two TVs on the south end of the restaurant and a glass-walled wine-storage room on display at the north end.
There’s also a fenced-in patio that features heated umbrellas meant to extend the outdoor-eating season by about two months, and an outdoor lounge for those seeking only drinks and appetizers.
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Executive Chef Brian Wright, who also leads the kitchen at Standard Grill and has a Chicago-area hotel background, has implemented a menu containing traditional American fare with a kick.
“There’s an Asian influence; there’s a Southwest influence,” Tsang said.
Some of the notable items on Bakersfield’s menu include jumbo lump crab cakes, BBQ pork ribs, stuffed gnocchi with meatballs, and a “Knuckle Sandwich” containing Maine lobster. There are also salads, soups du jour, steaks, and a dessert menu featuring something called “Fried Oreos.”
According to its website, Bakersfield's entrees are all cooked on a wood-fired grill.
Tsang said Bakersfield has not yet been reviewed by any known critics, but “they’ve shown interest.”
If you’re interested in getting a little taste of what Wright’s cooking is all about, see this video segment from Monday’s WGN Midday News. During the daily "Lunchbreak" segment, Wright cooked up grilled calamari steak with tomato gremolata.
Bakersfield is open from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.