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Raucous Retro Diner Ed Debevic’s Plans to Resurface in Streeterville

Owners could tempt tourists and locals with milkshakes, dancing, and snarky service

A large cream-colored brick building with red awning and in red letters “Ed Debevic’s.”
Ed Debevic’s original River North location
Ed Debevic’s [Official Photo]

The owners of the closed kitschy 1950’s-style diner Ed Debevic’s plan to sing and dance their way back into Chicago’s heart with a new Streeterville location. Owners applied for a liquor license late last month for the first floor of 159 E. Ohio Street, less than a block off Michigan Avenue.

Plans for a new restaurant at this location first made headlines in 2017, more than two years after a development displaced the original 31-year-old River North location. Representatives have not responded to a request for more information.

Originally conceived by Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises co-founder Rich Melman, Ed Debevic’s debuted in Chicago in 1984, and the throwback diner with a side of snark expanded to other cities including New York, Las Vegas, and Los Angeles. LEYE later sold the chain. Fans may recall signs bearing phrases with helpful prompts such as “Tipping is not a city in China” and “Eat and get out,” as well as glittery vinyl booths and the itsy-bitsy “World’s Smallest Sundae.” A location in downtown Milwaukee, the last remaining location outside Illinois, closed in 2001.

There’s no word yet on when the new Ed Debevic’s will launch, so stay tuned for more news.

Ed Debevic's

159 East Ohio Street, , IL 60611 (312) 374-8497 Visit Website