January 9th, 2020 3:58 PM
Obsessed Kitchen and Bar, 800 S. Oak Park Ave., Oak Park (Alex Rogals/Staff)
By MELISSA ELSMO
Oak Park Eats
South Oak Park should be prepared to welcome a new restaurant on the corner of Oak Park Avenue and Van Buren Street.
Closure rumors are swirling on social media about Obsessed Kitchen and Bar, located at 800 S. Oak Park Ave in Oak Park. While transition is certainly afoot at the local restaurant, the owners say the impending change is not a result of a failing business model or lack of community support.
Obsessed Kitchen and Bar owner and chef Daniel Vogel and his wife and co-owner Tricia made the decision to put the business on the market in September 2019 and say they are coming close to getting a deal done.
"We thought it would take a year or more to find a potential buyer," said Vogel. "This is going much faster than we anticipated, but we'll be open until the deal is officially done."
The potential buyers are doing their due diligence before finalizing the purchase and Vogel isn't prepared to share information about who is looking at the space. While he is emotional about departing the restaurant, he said he's certain south Oak Park will embrace the new business when the time is right.
He wants to help facilitate the transition and intends to be supportive by getting the word out about the new establishment and becoming a patron himself.
Since the couple opened Obsessed Kitchen and Bar in March 2017, Chef Vogel has treated customers as if they were dining in his home. A seasonally driven menu featuring beloved Brussels sprouts, noteworthy burgers and crispy Korean tacos kept locals coming back for more However, the couple recently reassessed the time-cost of being in the restaurant industry.
In addition to having two growing children they'd like to spend more time with, Vogel has a passion for teaching culinary classes and has a vison for opening an adult cooking school in the area.
He is toying around with several concepts and likes the idea of celebrating practical life skills (think how to handle a kitchen knife) in a down-to-earth environment. Transitioning out of restaurant ownership will allow the couple to maximize their culinary creativity.
"I love this restaurant," said Vogel. "It has been our corner of the world for three years and we want to thank everyone for their years of support."