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Palatine OKs restaurant for vacant Fortune Kookie building.

Byline: Bob Susnjara

Palatine OKs restaurant for vacant Fortune Kookie building

Palatine's Fortune Kookie Chinese restaurant will be getting a new life after a fire about two years ago led to its closure.

Village council members Monday night approved a special-use permit for Sakura Sushi and Grill at 570 N. Smith St. Sakura, a Japanese-Korean eatery, will renovate the Fortune Kookie building.

Jane Lee, who co-owns Sakura with her husband, Dongyeol, said she hopes the restaurant will be ready to open in March or April. Sakura already has locations including Naperville, Clarendon Hills, Lombard, Rosemont and Schaumburg.

What will make family-owned Sakura stand out in a competitive market is an all-you-can-eat sushi menu at lunch and dinner that includes other items such as miso soup, Korean beef known as bulgogi and chicken teriyaki, the Lees said after Monday's council session.

Palatine's younger demographics and other factors led to a desire to continue Sakura's growth in the village, the couple said.

"Very good location and a single building," Dongyeol Lee said.

Palatine firefighters were summoned at 11:48 p.m. Jan. 25, 2016, to the Fortune Kookie, which was a popular place in town for Chinese food. Flames were seen on the roof and fire extended into the interior of the building, officials said.

No one was injured in the fire, which was not considered suspicious. The restaurant was closed when the fire occurred and never reopened.

Sakura Sushi and Grill will have seating for up to 116 guests. The restaurant is expected to have about 10 employees.

Councilman Tim Millar is among the elected officials looking forward to Sakura.

"It's nice to see restaurants coming in," Millar said. "Having one reopened in a popular place, this will be a good addition."

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Publication:Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)
Date:Feb 6, 2018
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