Rooh brings new age Indian cuisine to the West Loop

Rooh brings new age Indian cuisine to the West Loop
The Rooh team. Photo: Carole Kuhrt-Brewer

Literally translated, Rooh means soul

Soul and spirit are what Rooh Chicago, under the ownership of Manish and Rina Mallick is all about. The highly-acclaimed Progressive Indian restaurant and cocktail bar that opened late May inside the former Lunatic, The Lover, & The Poet space in the West Loop (736 W Randolph) promises a unique and elevated dining experience.

The multi-level space features the main first floor dining room and extended bar area; a basement private dining room and a second floor lounge.

Rooh exterior. Photo: Carole Kuhrt-Brewer

Rooh exterior. Photo: Carole Kuhrt-Brewer

The authentic Indian restaurant offers charming, seasonal fare based on customary Indian sensibilities and international techniques, courtesy of respected Executive Chef Sujan Sarkar and Chef de Cuisine Sahil Sethi.

The Spirit of Rooh 

Complete with an innovative cocktail menu and an eclectic, modern design, "Rooh," meaning soul or spirit, brings that spirit to Chicago’s “Restaurant Row.”

Executive Chef Sujan Sarkar explains, “When developing the culinary programming for Rooh Chicago, we have made a conscious effort to work with both local and specialty purveyors to ensure we are providing our patrons with the finest ingredients putting a focus on incorporating the influence of the Chicago food scene into our cuisine by including unique items, such as our take on a hot dog with Malabar prawn sausage and kasundi mustard.”

Chef Sujan Sarkar

Chef Sujan Sarkar

Named Times Chef of the Year in India, Sarkar has combined the country’s rich traditional and regional flavors with local Chicago ingredients and modern techniques.

Small Plates or Large Plates

Take your pick.

Small plates on the menu include: Green Pea and Goat Cheese stuffed unleavened bread, with shaved fresh truffle, goat butter, and pea shoot; Tuna Chaat with avocado, green mango, chilled melon rasam, and puffed black rice; Cauliflower Koliwada with home-made spiced chickpea batter deep fried and tossed in house peanut chutney, served with tempered yogurt and rice mousse with peanut thecha; and Fresh Oyster served with charred unripen mango granita, pickled chili, and finger lime pearls.

Large plates include the Paneer Pinwheel, a roulade of nuts and marinated cottage cheese served with makhani sauce and fenugreek; Achari Monk Fish, wrapped in a bamboo leaf and served with kerala allepey curry; Lamb Chop, coated with pistachio and curry leaf crumb, baby eggplant moussaka, and varuval gravy; and Beef Short Rib Curry, braised in house spice mix of cumin, coriander, and black pepper and served with madras curry, semolina coated bone marrow croquette, and garlic mashed potato.


Those with a sweet tooth can choose from dessert options including Haji Ali Cream served with fresh mango and honey comb in a mango shell and Baked Semolina Cake with milk ice cream and toasted pistachio.


Shaken or stirred, Rooh has them both. Photo: Carole Kuhrt-Brewer

Shaken or stirred, Rooh has them both. Photo: Carole Kuhrt-Brewer

This is an area where "Rooh" really showcases its spirit. Guests can choose from nine seasonal cocktails inspired by ancient Ayurvedic wisdom and its six tastes, or rasas – sweet, sour, salty, pungent, astringent and bitter.

Cocktails are beautifully presented with fresh fruit and flowers. Photo: Carole Kuhrt-Brewer

Cocktails are beautifully presented with fresh fruit and edible  flowers. Photo: Carole Kuhrt-Brewer

The cocktail menu features innovation selections such as the Hyderabad Tonic with gin, turmeric, orange thyme, and grapefruit tonic; Pink City with tequila, guava, chili, and Rooh masala; and Malabar Old Fashioned with bourbon, coco-almond, coffee bitters, and maple among others.

What: ROOH Chicago
736 W. Randolph
When: Tuesday-Thursday 5pm-10pm, Friday & Saturday 5pm-11pm, and Sunday 5pm-9:30 pm
Reservations: visit

Small Bites of Chicago

A Special June at Geja's Cafe

Geja’s Café (340 W. Armitage), the legendary fondue and lovers’ landmark, is celebrating its upcoming 54th anniversary during the month of June with a selection of exclusive specials, along with their annual sauce contest. 

Throughout June, all guests that dine at Geja’s will have a chance to receive a complimentary $54 gift card if they are either the 54th or 154th guest in each night. On Sundays through Fridays, guests who dine in and say they are here to celebrate Geja’s 54th Anniversary will also enjoy $54 off the purchase of two full Premier Dinners. 

Coming soon

Offshore (1000 E. Grand Ave.) an expansive dining and entertainment venue atop Festival Hall on the eastern end of Navy Pier is scheduled to open any day. The space encompasses 36,000 square feet, including a huge, glassed-in area (open year-round), outdoor lawn areas, a full-service  bar, a world-class kitchen, terraces, fire pits, an entertainment and gaming area and more.

The Art of AIRE

A unique, immersive art experience is launching 24 stories above the loop at AIRE’s “rotating artist series,” kicking off Monday, June 10 from 7 – 9 p.m.  In addition to viewing the recently revealed 3,800 sq. ft. mural, “Grounded,” guests are invited to witness local Chicago creative Tristan Hummel at work as he completes and displays his “The Light Keeper’s Looking Glass” installation.

Guests can participate in a creative conversation about the new piece from 7:15 -7:45 p.m., tour AIRE to take in the collective works, and enjoy special $6 draft beers, a cocktail or light bites throughout the evening.

Escape to Wisconsin

Saint Kate, (139 E. Kilbourn Ave) Milwaukee's exciting new arts hotel combines artful dining at Aria Restaurant, the Giggly Champagne Bar, the lobby bar and Proof Pizza along with a 1700 sq. foot art gallery, a black box theate, pop up performances and much more. The hotel features art centric hotel rooms and private spaces for a one-of-a-kind experience.

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