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A Beloved Retro Steakhouse Chain Is Returning After 15 Years

Fans can look forward to a new restaurant opening in just a few months.

At the start of 2023, news emerged that the defunct steakhouse chain Steak and Ale was planning a comeback more than a decade after it shuttered all of its locations. Now, the restauranteur leading Steak and Ale's comeback has finally revealed exactly when and where fans will be able to visit the beloved retro brand again.

Steak and Ale was a casual dining chain known for its steaks, salad bar, beer, wine, and Tudor-style decor. It was founded in 1966 by the late Norman Brinker—a restauranteur who also helped establish the pub chain Bennigan's—and peaked at 280 units in the 1980s. However, growing competition in the industry took a toll on its popularity, and in 2008, the brand's parent company filed for bankruptcy and closed all of Steak and Ale's remaining locations. 

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Fans never forgot Steak and Ale and held out hope for a potential comeback over the years. In fact, a Facebook group dedicated to the chain's return currently boasts more than 50,000 followers. 

Fast-forward to early 2023, and news broke that plans were underway to start opening Steak and Ale restaurants again in the United States. But specific details on when and where the first of these new locations would open weren't available—until now. 

Paul Mangiamele, chairman and CEO of Legendary Restaurant Brands (which acquired Steak and Ale in 2015), told FSR Magazine in a recent interview that the first new Steak and Ale restaurant to open in 15 years will be located in a Wyndham hotel on Nicollet Avenue in Burnsville, Minn. The restaurant will be operated by a franchisee, encompass 6,000 square feet, and seat roughly 220 customers.

steak and ale interior
Courtesy of Bennigan's

It will feature several nods to the original Steak and Ale eateries fans knew and loved, like the Tudor-style decor, original logo, and salad bar. The menu will also include some classic fan-favorite menu items like the Kensington Club, Hawaiian Chicken, Steak Oscar, and baby back ribs, as well as some old favorites that have been reimagined, per FSR.

This upcoming Minnesota restaurant will start serving guests in April 2024, but that will only mark the start of Steak and Ale's comeback. Roy Arnold—CEO of Kansas-based Endeavor Properties and the same franchisee who is opening the Wyndham hotel location—scored a 15-location deal in the Midwest. Arnold also has the exclusive rights for expanding Steak and Ale in Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, and South Dakota, FSR reported.

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According to Mangiamele, fans' excitement for the return of the chain after so many years is palpable. He said that people have repeatedly told him that they're prepared to take trips and even hop on planes just to dine at a Steak and Ale once it starts serving guests again.

"Because you know why?" Mangiamele told FSR. "People love a comeback story. You know why? People love heritage brands, iconic brands, historic brands. They love it. They have a love for these brands and I've never heard a bad story [about Steak & Ale]."

Steak and Ale isn't the only shuttered restaurant brand that started showing signs of life again in 2023. Earlier this year, a real estate company announced that it had arranged a new lease for a tenant to reopen a shuttered Sweet Tomatoes location in Tucson, Ariz. Sweet Tomatoes was a buffet chain that built a strong following for its fresh salad bar, soups, pizza, and bread, but it declared bankruptcy and closed all of its 97 locations in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Zoe Strozewski
Zoe Strozewski is a News Writer for Eat This, Not That! A Chicago native who now lives in New Jersey, she graduated from Kean University in 2020 with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. Read more about Zoe