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Japanese Restaurant Arami Opening Sibling Restaurant on Lincoln Avenue

By Serena Dai | January 29, 2014 7:52am

LAKEVIEW — A popular West Town Japanese restaurant is bringing both sushi and bento boxes to Lincoln Avenue.

Brothers Ty and Troy Fujimura plan to open a to-be-named "brother" version of Arami, 1829 W. Chicago Ave., in the former Chizaya Japanese Pub at 3056 N. Lincoln Ave. 

Like Arami, the brother restaurant will serve ramen, a type of Japanese grilling called robata and sushi. It will also serve lunch dishes like bento boxes from Arami GO!, a Streeterville spot at 203 E. Ohio St. that the Fujimuras closed earlier this month.

But the menu will be slightly different and a little more interactive for diners, Ty Fujimura said.

"The new place is a love child of Arami and Arami GO!," he said. "I'm looking at it as a brother restaurant to Arami."

Fujimura, also the man behind Small Bar, opened Arami in 2010 to showcase the brothers' Japanese heritage. Their Japanese father grew up in Hawaii, where grandparents cooked food from their home country.

Arami was to both "bring back the family restaurant feel" and to open up Chicagoans to different types of Japanese food.

"It's not strictly fine dining or just raw fish," Ty Fujimura said. "There's so much more to Japanese cuisine that goes well beyond that. We try not to just expose people to these ingredients but to educate them."

The West Town restaurant was well-reviewed when it opened. The Tribune called it "among the first tier of Japanese restaurants in Chicago" and both Chicago magazine and the Reader put it on best new restaurant lists. 

Though it later lost its esteemed head sushi chef, Arami seemed to have kept up its reputation for affordable fine dining. It earned a spot on the Michelin Guide Bib Gourmand list for the first time in the fall.

Fujimura hopes to open the Lincoln Avenue restaurant in March, he said.