Cardinal Spirits opens kitchen


Cardinal Spirits’s dinner menu will feature dishes made with local ingredients. Buy Photos

Cardinal Spirits is known for its in-house made vodka and gin. Now the distillery will have the opportunity to become known for its food as well.

The distillery opened its kitchen June 5 to serve shaeable and small-plate dishes alongside its cocktails.

“We want as many people as possible to taste and enjoy our spirits, and craft spirits in general, and having food to complement our spirits is an important part of that mission,” said Jeff Wuslich, who co-founded Cardinal Spirits in early 2015.

Executive chef Dean Wirkerman will lead Cardinal Spirits’ foray into dining. He’s worked at chef Thomas Keller’s 3-star Michelin rated restaurant Per Se in New York City, as well as at Charlie Trotter’s in Chicago.

Wirkerman designed the menu with sharing in mind, according to a press release from Cardinal Spirits.

“In my ideal world, guests come in and order two or three dishes to share, and next time, two or three more dishes to share,” Wirkerman said in the press release. “This is a menu that you want to keep exploring.”

The dinner menu currently features grilled ribeye nuggets, made-from-scratch sour dough bread and hand-pulled mozzarella, among others. It’s open from 4 pm to an hour before close Tuesday through Saturday.

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