Rustle + Roux: Upscale Cafe in Chicago’s Loop

Hey, Foodies!  Do you like Top Chef contestant, Fabio Viviani and his wildly popular Siena Tavern restaurant in Chicago’s River North neighborhood?  Do you crave the Mexican cuisine served up by Chef Patricio Sandoval at his NY/Chicago restaurant Mercadito?  Then you will love Rustle + Roux, the new, upscale, multi-concept breakfast/lunch café in Chicago’s Loop!

Rustle + Roux opened this week to the public. It operates between the hours of 7am-2pm and until 3pm (for grab & go options).

Rustle + Roux in Chicago Loop

Rustle + Roux entrance on 2nd floor mezzanine of The Franklin Building

Located inside The Franklin Building at 227 West Monroe (between Washington and Franklin) on the 2nd floor, this place offers building tenants and the general public upscale dining options among 7 food stations incuding:

  • Mercadito Taqueria – by Chef Patricio Sandoval
  • Mercato – by Chef Fabio Viviani
  • Grill options
  • Deli options
  • Illy Café
  • Salad and Yogurt station
  • Soup and Oatmeal

Mercato at Rustle + Roux

Mercadito Taqueria at Rustle + Roux

Executive Chef Benjamin Browning presides over the grill, deli and sandwich stations and the other grab & go offerings on siteSoon Chef Browning will open a cocktail bar on the 29th floor of Franklin Building called R 29 (I am told).  This bar only will be open to tenants of The Franklin Building from 3-7pm  (I hope he changes his mind and lets the rest of the neighborhood in ;))

Chef Benjamin Browning of Rustle + Roux

Executive Chef Benjamin Browning of Rustle + Roux and I


This Monday I was invited to the official launch where I had a chance to chat with the chefs, enjoy some tasty free samples and take pictures of their fabulous food offerings.  Having no lunch date for the day (It’s OK.  No need to cry for me!), I was happy to accept this invitation and sail on over there soloAfter all, a girl has got to eat and I am always roaming around town looking for new lunch spots to share with my friends.

Fabio Viviani was there attending to his house made pasta, gnocchi and panini items.  There was also a raffle for Chef Viviani’s collection of Aeternum ceramic, non-stick cookware, his new cookbook, as well as coupons for the Rustle + Roux café and sets of Illy Café coffee and espresso cups.  There was even a 3-piece string band in attendance to celebrate the occasion.  Lovely!  Although, I have not heard anything since Monday so I will assume I did not win any of the raffle prizes (Slightly heavy sigh!)

Fabio Viviani at Mercato

Chef Fabio Viviani and I

Mercato's fresh pasta

Fresh pasta being made at Mercato’s food station at Rustle + Roux

Mercato's pizza at Rustle + Roux

Fresh out of the oven pizza from Mercato

Pizza at Mercato at Rustle + Roux


Rustle + Roux in Chicago

All of the food served at the different stations is made fresh on-site.  Chef Browning is actually smoking his meats on-site, including the scrumptious looking pork belly pictured below!  And, yes, it smelled just as great it looks.  Pretty impressive because I cannot imagine his kitchen is very large here.

Rustle + Roux's deli station

This smoked pork belly came fresh out of the oven. So pretty!

Rustle + Roux's deli sandwiches

This sandwich could easily feed 3-4 people! Looks delicious 🙂

Sandwiches at Rustle + Roux

Plenty of interesting and fresh sandwich choices

Vegan options at Rustle + Roux

Looking for a veggie option for lunch?

Rustle + Roux's salad bar

Fresh salad options

Salad bar at Rustle + Roux

Rustle + Roux's grab and go options

Grab & Go options 

Rustle + Roux's beverages

The space at Rustle + Roux is bright and inviting with individual tables, larger booths and high-top communal dining tables.

Rustle + Roux's dining room

Bright, clean space with plenty of tables

Rustle + Roux in The Franklin

High top dining options and flat screen TVs

Mercato's gnocchi at Rustle + Roux

Mercato’s house made gnocchi with spicy sausage, leeks and asparagus

Rustle + Roux anniversary

And the band played on…

Rustle + Roux's lunch

Decisions, Decisions!

Rustle + Roux will also be offering special catering menus to customers both on-site and off-site.

Illy Cafe at Rustle + Roux

The friendly Illy Café Station 

Illy Cafe's gelato


Pastries at Illy Cafe


Illy Cafe's cookies

C is for Cookie 🙂

Illy Cafe's macaroons

I love a good looking pastel macaroon.

Illy Cafe's cannolis

“Leave the gun. Take the cannoli!”


I will definitely be back solo and with friends.  Check it out yourselves!  Visit

Welcome to the neighborhood, Rustle + Roux!!







Labeled: Food & Libations