A massive expansion is underway for the most popular restaurant in Illinois, they are looking at opening hundreds of new locations, and one could be on the way to the Show-Me State...

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According to NBC Chicago, Portillo's the legendary Chicago restaurant known for its hot dogs, burgers, cheese fries, Italian beef, and chocolate cake, is going to open hundreds of new restaurants in the coming years. NBC Chicago says on their site...

"In a phone call with investors on Tuesday, Michael Osanloo, the company's president, CEO and director, announced an aggressive expansion strategy to add 920 restaurants across the country in the next 20 years. Of those, 800 would be full-scale restaurants, while 120 would be pick-up or drive-thru locations -- without a dining area. Portillo's currently operates around 70 restaurants, with dozens across the Chicago area and others in Michigan, Wisconsin, California, Florida, Arizona and Texas."

The article goes on to say the company does plan on expanding mainly in Texas, Florida, and Arizona, which isn't surprising because that is where Illinoisans are moving to the most, to read more on this click here!

So...of the 800 new restaurants is one coming to Missouri? There is no official word yet, but to me, there are places in Missouri that would make sense for Portillo's. I would make the case that Portillo's would thrive in Columbia because college kids want to eat at a place like Portillo's, I think somewhere in St. Louis makes sense so the Cubs fans have somewhere to go before a Cubs vs Cardinals game, and finally a Portillo's would thrive in a touristy place like Branson. Can I request they open one in Hannibal for me, please...

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