Nearly a year into business, a popular Eastern Market restaurant is finally welcoming customers to dine inside. At the same time, the owners have changed the cuisine completely. 

The Chinese dishes they served carryout over the past 11 months or so — salt-and-pepper tofu, biang biang lamb noodles, wonton soup, bao buns and more — have all been shelved to make way for a brand new menu featuring cuisines the two chef and owners say better reflect their personal backgrounds. 

For Jennifer Jackson and Justin Tootla — who cooked Chinese food for a while at Chicago restaurant Thank You and later helmed the kitchen at seafood restaurant Voyager in Ferndale — something more personal means dishes inspired by the American South, India and South Africa. 

“Jen and I were obviously really excited to pick up where we left off cooking Chinese food back in Chicago and we definitely enjoyed our year cooking it. We just felt very dissociated with it … we just got to a point where we weren’t expressing ourselves through the food, which was the point, but we didn’t realize the effeit would have on us creatively and personally.”