Le Colonial Expanding to Lake Forest by Mid-Summer

This is the first of five new locations coming to Florida, Colorado, and Arizona
Le Colonial Expanding to Lake Forest by Mid-Summer
Photo: Official
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Upscale French-Vietnamese restaurant Le Colonial is opening a new site in Lake Forest, located at 655 Forest Ave.

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The new 12,500 square-foot restaurant will move into the former home of Market House on the Square by July 2022, according to Crain’s Chicago Business. The space, the first of many for Co-owners Rick Wahlstedt and Joe King, will feature an outdoor dining space and lounge. This will be the company’s first suburban attempt, following its first location in the Gold Coast district, where fine dining restaurants like Gibsons Bar & Steakhouse and Maple & Ash attract countless diners.

“We chose to do something a little different than what we’ve ever done before, because most of our markets that we’re in are surrounded with luxury five-star hotels and luxury retail,” Kings tells the publication. “This is more of a suburban community, and we haven’t done that in the Le Colonial realm as yet. The North Shore was really calling for, and I think it really needs some more restaurants that are upscale. People are, in some regard, moving from the urban centers into more suburban.”

Le Colonial originally opened at 937 N. Rush St. in 1996 and spent 22 years there until relocating around the corner to 57 E. Oak St. in 2019. The move proved successful, as the 20 percent additional space increased their revenue by 50 percent. The new Lake Forest location will open for dinner first, then add lunch after a few weeks. Wahlstedt and King, who also have locations in Atlanta and Houston, are continuing with the success by adding four more locations by the end of 2023.

Following the upcoming Lake Forest location, the company will open a site in Delray Beach, FL, in December 2022, then Naples, FL, in May or June 2023. Then they will debut in Denver in the fourth quarter of 2023, and finally in Scottsdale, AZ. By the time these five new locations open, the owners will likely have more on the way. In the meantime, guests can try the 1920s French colonial Southeast Asia cuisine at its downtown location or via private events at the new Lake Forest site. Dinner reservations net yet available for the latter.

Le Colonial Expanding to Lake Forest by Mid-Summer
Rendering: Official

Joey Reams

Born in San Diego, Joey moved to San Francisco to study Music Journalism at San Francisco State University. There, he worked for several publications, including The Culture Trip and RIFF Magazine, and served as the News Editor at Golden Gate Xpress. Joey previously worked as the News Assignment Editor for Pasadena Now. When he’s not working, you can find him exploring new cities, finding delicious food, and having fun at concerts.
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