Ten years ago, Benihana closed its Chicago restaurant in Streeterville, leaving the city without a location of the pricey, hibachi-focused chain. That’s about to change next week when the theatrical Japanese restaurant group returns to the city. Opening date’s Aug. 23 at the John Hancock Center, inside the ground-floor space where L’ Appetito occupied. Benihana debuted 53 years ago in New York and spread to Chicago in 1968 when the company opened its first location outside the Empire State.
For many Americans, Behihana was their first exposure to Japanese food, as chefs entertain customers while preparing their meals on the flattop. The new restaurant features 22 teppanyaki tables outfitted with hibachis, three private dining rooms, and a cocktail lounge. There’s also outdoor seating, and the Hancock location has a sushi bar. A spokeswoman said the menu will match other locations, including suburban ones in Lombard, Schaumburg, and Wheeling.
Take a look at the interior photos below. Reservations can be made online or by calling (312) 780-3110. Benihana opens on Wednesday, Aug. 23 at the Hancock, 875 N. Michigan Ave.