Heat a large nonstick or cast-iron skillet over medium-high. Add the olive oil, two turns of the pan. Add the bacon and cook, stirring occasionally, until almost crispy, 7 to 8 minutes; transfer to a plate. Add the artichokes and onion to the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring often, until aromatic, about 1 minute. Add the wine and cook, stirring often, until absorbed, about 3 minutes. Add the escarole, a few handfuls at a time, tossing to wilt between batches. Add the lemon zest and nutmeg; season with salt and pepper.
Add 2 cups chicken stock and the beans; bring to a simmer, sprinkle in the thyme and add the bacon. Add an extra cup of stock if you want the mixture more soupy. Simmer until the greens are tender, a few minutes, then add the lemon juice and a fat drizzle of EVOO, one turn of the pan. Serve from the skillet into shallow bowls and top with the cheese. Pass the crusty bread for mopping.