Stashs Owner Opens BYOB Enoteca

Bring your own wine to Highland Park's newest Italian place.

Bobby Dubin is at it again.

The owner recently turned part of his restaurant into a . On Thursday, he's opening another restaurant in the same storefront: an Italian place called .

"I always had this great desire for Italian," Dubin said. 

The longtime restaurateur owned Gusto Italiano in Glenview from 1985-95 and watched that restaurant grow from 14 tables to 57. Now his head chef from Gusto will join him at Enoteca.

"It's not the typical southern Italian cuisine we all grew up with and loved," Dubin said. "The menu is eclectic. It's a combination of all the regions of Italy."

Unlike 2nd Street Bistro, which prides itself on getting what it serves from local vendors, the Enoteca will bring in much of its menu directly from Italy.

"I have to order rigatoni a week in advance," Dubin said.

The way in which the Enoteca will be similar to 2nd Street Bistro will be in its emphasis on organic food. Dubin believes his decision to serve organic has helped make 2nd Street Bistro . The restaurant has gotten into the habit of turning people away because it has gotten so full, according to Dubin.

"We served 154 people and turned away 123 people on Saturday," Dubin said. "The concept of this whole organic thing is driving so much interest it's unbelievable."

Another aspect of the bistro that will continue into the Enoteca is the BYOB policy, which sounds unusual for a restaurant with a name that means "wine bar" in Italian. However, Dubin is convinced allowing people to bring their own alcohol with no corkage fee is a major contributor to his restaurant's success.

"It's like a party here," Dubin said. He mentioned a group that came to the bistro recently with an expensive bottle of scotch and two bottles of wine. "You drink for free so you come in and have a party every night."

Stashs will continue to serve its hot dog and burger fare during the day, but in the evening the Stashs menu will only be available for takeout and delivery.

Though , Dubin is confident he's got nothing to worry about.

"I know what I'm serving," Dubin said. He points to his brick oven that he'll use to make pizzas for the Enoteca and at a rough draft of his menu. "We want to be the one everybody is going to copy."

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Ed Brill February 13, 2012 at 08:06 PM
There are some interesting comments on the Lake Forest Patch following this article: http://lakeforest.patch.com/articles/stashs-owner-opens-byob-enoteca-67f1022e
David March 23, 2012 at 12:25 AM
One word .... GREAT


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