Art Direct / Build / Concept / Design
After an offer was somewhat unexpectedly accepted on two storefronts in the Avondale neighborhood in Chicago, we found ourselves with a kitchen and street-level retail space on our hands.
One of these was dedicated to tropical bar concept Lost Lake (see LSD0027), and we then developed the other as a fast American Chinese takeout counter concept, Thank You., offering menu items for carryout and delivery, as well as to the barstools and tables next door.
The simple, bright white space was a marked contrast to its colorful neighbor, designed around a crisp white color scheme with few decorative elements.
A simple six panel light board outlined some designed, illustrative elements and the numbered-style menu listings. A takeout cooler anchored the counterspace, offering up esoteric drink options – alcoholic and non – for both Thank You. customers as well as those queuing up to get tropical at neighboring Lost Lake. We designed custom aprons with the fine folks at Stock Manufacturing, designed our own chopstick labels, and then also had custom fortune cookies made specific to us. The menu was wok-driven featuring fresh, local ingredients, offering up a creative take on traditional American Chinese takeout dishes.
In March of 2016, an electrical fire caused significant damage to Thank You., nearly burning it to the ground and forcing the space to shut down for repairs and rebuilding.
Given, for the first time, a completely blank canvas, the space was reborn as Lost Lake's Stranger in Paradise, a bar within a bar and extension of Lost Lake, where Lost Lakers and guests can explore the more experimental and non-traditional interpretations of tiki and tropical cocktails.