UPDATE: Jennifer Tran emailed to clarify that lunch and dinner services will end in February. Edited story follows.
Any customers who had dinner reservations past February for Hanbun are out of luck, as Eater Young Gun chef/co-owner Dave Park and co-owner Jennifer Tran are closing the acclaimed Korean restaurant that resides inside a suburban mall. Maintenance issues inside the strip mall where the restaurant resides have forced Hanbun to cancel all tasting menu reservations past February 2. They were booked through May in suburban Westmont.
The restaurant’s future has long been in question as Hanbun’s lease was set to expire in the middle of 2018. Park, whose experience includes time at Alinea in Lincoln Park, has developed quite a rabid following, taking a fine-dining approach to Korean food. Hanbun’s popularity is quite astounding as the restaurant resides inside a suburban food court about a 40-minute drive west of Chicago. He opened the restaurant in December 2015 with Tran, his fiancé.
Tran told the Tribune that they’re open to relocating in Chicago and the suburbs, but don’t want to move west of the current location. They’ll schedule dinner pop-ups as they plot their next steps. But those lucky enough with a reservation before February 2 should be humble as Tran provided no timetable for a reopening.