FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – After months and years of planning, construction, and lots of anticipation, Portillo’s has opened its new Fort Wayne location to the public.

The fast-casual restaurant brand known for its Chicago-style menu celebrated the grand opening with a ribbon cutting ceremony Thursday morning. Mayor Tom Henry made an appearance and spoke about the addition of the new dining experience.

Portillo’s Fort Wayne joins the brand’s largest market outside of the Chicagoland area. It’s also Portillo’s sixth restaurant in Indiana.

The new restaurant sits in the former parking lot of Sears near Glenbrook Square Mall. It features a diner-themed interior drawing inspiration from the 1950s and 1960s.

The 7,800 square foot space includes seating for nearly 200 guests, a seasonal outdoor patio, and a double drive-thru.

Guests can enjoy all of Portillo’s classic menu items including Chicago-Style Hot Dogs, Italian Beef sandwiches, char-grilled burgers, fresh salads, and Portillo’s Famous Chocolate Cake and shakes.

While the Fort Wayne location stays true to the menu, history, and traditions associated with the Portillo’s brand, there is one thing that makes this one stand out. Inside the restaurant, guests can see a special mural of the Fort Wayne Daisies, a local women’s baseball team that dates back to the 1940s.

Additionally, Portillo’s has made an effort to connect with some of the community’s charitable organizations.

Prior to the official grand opening, Portillo’s partnered with Turnstone and Mad Anthony Children’s Hope House during a sneak peek preview at the restaurant. The two-day event raised over $6,900 through donations from the sneak peek preview meals. Portillo’s will also match those donations received for each organization.

You can visit Portillo’s Fort Wayne at 295 W. Coliseum Blvd. or have it delivered through or the Portillo’s app.