Time Out Market Chicago Launches Fine Dining Concept By Chef Stephen Gillanders

Valhalla will be the first-ever standalone restaurant located within the Market
Photo: Official

Time Out Market Chicago announced the opening of Valhalla, a dining concept by Chef Stephen Gillanders coming in September 2022. Valhalla will be the first-ever standalone restaurant located within the Market, offering a full-service dining experience.

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“We are beyond thrilled to welcome Chef Stephen Gillanders with his concept Valhalla to Time Out Market Chicago—we continue to push boundaries to offer our guests a unique culinary and cultural experience,” said Time Out Market Chicago’s General Manager Robert LaPata in a statement.“Valhalla is an excellent addition to the already amazing culinary mix in our Market. At the core of what we do is to make fine-dining accessible within a casual environment. Valhalla by Chef Stephen—who you get to interact with in the open kitchen—takes this to a whole new level and we are proud to launch this exciting hospitality innovation together with him.”

Chef Stephen Gillanders has been fascinated with food since a young age, helping his Filipino grandmother prepare authentic dishes and realizing when he was just 15 that he was meant to become a chef. His culinary career spans cutting his teeth with Jean-Georges Vongerichten; traveling the world to learn about international cuisine; and opening his first solo restaurant, S.K.Y. in Chicago which continues to receive critical acclaim.

Valhalla is located on the Market’s second floor and is inspired by Norse mythology. The name Valhalla describes a heavenly, great hall where heroes partake in a grand feast. Given the restaurant’s location overlooking the main floor of the Market, the name’s symbolism takes a literal context.

Chef Stephen Gillanders said: “The evolution of dining is trending towards a common ground, in the middle. More casual restaurants and eateries are stepping up their game and cooking more mindfully, focusing on more responsible ingredients, dietary preferences and eating habits. Conversely, fine dining restaurants are becoming more casual and sprouting up in unexpected places. The best restaurant in the world, Geranium, is located in a soccer stadium, Kato opened in a strip mall in Los Angeles, Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare is in a grocery market, and Dave Beran opened Dialogue in the food court of a mall. Rather than looking at Valhalla as an unorthodox approach, I feel like this opportunity is part of a natural restaurant progression that we are already experiencing. I’m very excited to wrap my arms around the location of Time Out Market Chicago and capture the best of the market’s high energy in tandem with an upscale experience. Rather than saying, “I can’t do that because I’m in a market.” my ethos is, “I should absolutely do that because I’m in a market.”

The open kitchen, large chef’s counter, and tablecloth dining space will showcase Gillanders’ culinary talent while creating an intimate, personalized experience to interact with guests, as the Chef himself will be based there. Valhalla’s cuisine will consist of a balanced à la carte menu and the option of a chef’s tasting menu.

Valhalla’s menu will feature dishes such as: Seared Japanese Scallops with brown butter, bonito and enoki mushrooms; Dry Aged Lamb with berbere, fragrant tomato butter and artichoke; Chilled Kusshi Oysters, caviar tsuyu, finger lime, yuzu oil; Smoked Ricotta Cappelletti, sea urchin, quail egg, nori tuile, and more.

Valhalla will accommodate 66 guests, including the 14-seat chef’s counter. Guests will have the option to order from the full menu in the dining space and the counter. Valhalla will be open for dinner Wednesday through Sunday from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Lisa Hay

Lisa is a staff reporter for What Now Media Group. She covers new restaurant, retail, and real estate openings across all of our markets. A true foodie, this Air Force veteran has lived all over the world — from Aviano, Italy to Nairobi, Kenya — but her favorite spot is NOLA for its rich history, architecture, culture, and of course, its good eats.
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