A growing favorite of Purdue students survived

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is part of an ongoing series featuring eateries that the Boilermaker faithful can visit before or after a Boilermaker home game. Do you have a favorite? Email Noah Padilla at [email protected].

LAFAYETTE, Ind. — The idea of ​​opening a restaurant in a college town was a challenge that Chen Pan, owner of Kitami Yakiniku & Sushi, was excited to tackle.

Before moving to Lafayette, he had opened several successful Japanese restaurants in Nashville, Tennessee, and knew the difficulties of a new business.

Chen Pan, owner of Kitami Yakiniku & Sushi, located at 731 Main St. in Lafayette, poses for a photo on Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2022.

When he first opened his doors, Pan saw great success. Students flocked to his restaurant to try the grill and sushi on weekends, and during the week the restaurant had a steady stream of customers, but nothing surprising.

“When we opened in March,” Pan said, “we didn’t have a menu. We didn’t have a liquor license. We did not advertise. We just put the ‘Open’ sign on and people came in. We were getting busier every day.”

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