While Chicagoans mourn the shutter of some their favorite restaurants as 2017 winds down, here’s some good cheer: Ed Debevic’s is coming back — this time in Streeterville. That may only qualify as positive vibes for those who miss the old-school diner with dancing, wise-cracking servers that drew tourists and school groups for 31 years before crews demolished the restaurant in October 2015 in River North. The location of the new Ed’s was officially revealed via a building permit uncovered by Chicago Cityscape for $1 million in renovations at 550 N. St. Clair Street, which is the ground floor of a condo building, on the corner of Ohio and St. Clair.
Now, it’s no secret that Ed’s ownership was planning a new location. Two years ago they teased that a replacement would be built near downtown. That way it would be easily accessible to tourists and other fans of being yelled at: rude service is an Ed Debevic’s staple. At one point, ownership said a new Ed’s would be open by mid-2016. They’re a bit off that estimate. Ownership wouldn’t return inquiries to when Ed’s would reopen. The windows in Streeterville remain papered off so passersby can’t see any construction inside.
The original Ed’s at 640 N. Wells Street was heavy on the cheese, often featuring aspiring actors as waiters who wore colorful uniforms and danced on counters to celebrate the retro diner theme. The restaurant closed to make room for a 22-story tower. Eater Chicago will continue to monitor progress as one of Chicago’s more-memorable restaurants continues the comeback trail.