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Benihana Plans Chicago Return in Fall 2017 Inside Hancock Center

It’s been nine years since their departure

John Hancock Center
Benihana is coming to the John Hancock Center.
Ashok Selvam is the editor of Eater Chicago and a native Chicagoan armed with more than two decades of award-winning journalism. Now covering the world of restaurants and food, his nut graphs are super nutty.

After nine years, Benihana is returning to Chicago. The chain of Japanese teppanyaki-style restaurants has plans to open a 9,000-square-foot restaurant inside the iconic John Hancock Center. They’re targeting a fall 2017 opening, next to The Cheesecake Factory, according to Crain’s.

Restaurant officials had been searching for a Chicago space for four years. As Crain’s noted, Benihana left Chicago in 2007 after they shuttered their restaurant in Streeterville at 166 E. Superior St. They lasted 40 years in that location. They still have a trio of suburban restaurants in Lombard, Schaumburg and Wheeling.

Benihana will take over the space at the base of the skyscraper, north of The Cheesecake Factory. Some of the space was vacated by L’Appetito, the Italian deli that closed earlier this year.

Besides the tableside grilling, the restaurant will also offer outdoor seating on the plaza and a sushi bar, according to Crain’s.