HOME > Chowhound > Chains >
What are you cooking today? Get great advice
TELL US

How is Bennigan's still in business??

Angelina Jun 23, 2007 10:56 AM

I passed one by me the other evening (Route 1 Edison, NJ) and the place was dead! A few cars, but nothing!

I have not been to one in over 10 years. I never see it advertised anymore either. Is is popular in other states?

  1. Gary Soup Jun 23, 2007 11:00 AM

    Have never heard of it (San Francisco Bay Area).

    1 Reply
    1. re: Gary Soup
      j
      Jeters Jun 23, 2007 11:07 AM

      We used to go to the one in boston near the Commons all the time, and it was pretty much always busy.

    2. steakman55 Jun 23, 2007 03:25 PM

      It used to be decent fern bar fare, at least in Tallahassee. Our family likes to go to Chili's for lunch after church, but once it was very crowded and we decided to try the Bennigan's 100 yards away. What a let down...only one quarter of the place was even open; 75% of the restaurant was actually closed down, with chairs upside on the tables and the lights off. That should have been a clue to leave, but we ordered and not only was the food not good...it was horrible. Within a few weeks that particular branch was closed and the sign taken down. I can see why.

      1. c
        calabasas_trafalgar Jun 25, 2007 04:31 PM

        they are long gone from Southern California. This place was awful!

        4 Replies
        1. re: calabasas_trafalgar
          ipsedixit Jun 25, 2007 08:09 PM

          There is one in Monrovia (in restaurant row on Huntington Drive), in your neck of the woods.

          I actually like Bennigan's, esp. the Monte Cristo and the Fish and Chips.

          1. re: ipsedixit
            c
            calabasas_trafalgar Jun 25, 2007 11:53 PM

            no more, it's a BJs now!

            1. re: calabasas_trafalgar
              ipsedixit Jun 26, 2007 09:46 AM

              Indeed you are right my friend ... but at least there's still the Glendale branch, right? Right???

              Cheers.

              1. re: ipsedixit
                c
                calabasas_trafalgar Jun 26, 2007 10:02 AM

                don't know or care. This place ranks beneath the bottom of my list.

        2. j
          jim1126 Jun 25, 2007 09:14 PM

          We still have them here in Houston, but I haven't been in years. I always remember Bennigan's being a second-rate (third rate?) TGI Friday's. I never liked Bennigan's food.

          1. GroovinGourmet Jun 26, 2007 03:01 AM

            GACK!

            Some people will eat anything...

            And I'm one of them, but I won't touch Bennigan's food.

            1 Reply
            1. re: GroovinGourmet
              j
              jujuthomas Jun 26, 2007 09:48 AM

              we met friends there recently who "love" bennigan's - it was the worst burger I ever ate, and all they did was complain about their food too. Not going back any time soon.

            2. l
              luvs2munchabunch Jun 26, 2007 10:03 AM

              There's still one in Memphis, but it's been ages since I've been.

              1. maxzook Jul 29, 2008 11:38 AM

                As of today (thirteen months from the OP), they aren't:

                http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080729/ap_on_bi_ge/bennigan_s_bankruptcy_filing

                Only the company owned branches are closing, at least some of the franchises will stay open:

                http://cbs2chicago.com/local/bennigan...

                The branch closest to me (Glendale, CA) closed down about six months ago. No great loss

                3 Replies
                1. re: maxzook
                  monkeyrotica Jul 29, 2008 04:42 PM

                  I remember going into a Bennigan's in college back in 1987. We ordered nachos and were given (I swear) FIVE chips and a ramekin full of dip that tasted like Cheez Wiz and a teespoon of Rotel. $6.95. Haven't set foot in the place in twenty years. Since then, I've stayed away from most places with and apostrophe "s" name (Bennigan's, Friday's, Ruby Tuesday's, Applebee's).

                  1. re: monkeyrotica
                    n
                    nypb Jul 29, 2008 08:21 PM

                    I used to frequent Bennigan's in the 80s as well. I took all my first dates there as they had such a versatile menu.

                    I took my last girlfriend (now wife, 20 yrs. later) to Red Lobster instead cause I knew she was special : )

                    RIP (I know the independant locations are staying open but they've all been dead to me for years).

                    1. re: monkeyrotica
                      f
                      FriPilot May 1, 2010 05:44 PM

                      The Bennigans Here in the Las Cruces NM area closed about a year ago. It was like all the others...nothing special. Just another chain restaurant.

                      I like your suggestion about avoiding restaurants with apostrophes in the name. I'll bet it's 90 per cent accurate.

                  2. steakman55 Jul 29, 2008 02:30 PM

                    How they stayed open this long is a mystery to me. The one in Tallahassee closed years ago. Long live Chili's

                    1. b
                      Big N Fat Jul 29, 2008 03:35 PM

                      Everyone probably watched the movie, 'Waiting' and realized it was modeled after Bennigan's, as it is hinted to in the DVD extras at the end of the movie.
                      -BnF

                      1. byrd Jul 30, 2008 05:54 AM

                        http://www.chicagotribune.com/busines...

                        1. t
                          treb Jul 30, 2008 05:57 AM

                          On the news today, they just folded. Not to be missed.

                          1. alkapal Jul 30, 2008 06:08 AM

                            bennigan's in falls church, va has closed. a few years ago, they had delicious baby back ribs with jack daniels bbq sauce, good burgers and reubens. the last time, the ribs were not nearly as good.

                            1. cassiatoast Jul 30, 2008 06:05 PM

                              My husband and I went about 10 years ago. His steak was still frozen when they served it. We never went back.

                              1. ipsedixit Jul 30, 2008 10:12 PM

                                If you travel frequently, you'll find that Bennigan's are a god-send at most airports that don't have your preferred executive lounge when you're hungry.

                                1. cuccubear Mar 17, 2009 09:28 AM

                                  I ate at the one in Glen Burnie, MD yesterday. The food was edible, but there was nothing Chipotle about my Chipotle Burger, just fried onions and guac. Fries were ordinary, but the Pepsi was refreshing after a long drive!

                                  Odd. I was the only one of my party that finished their lunch. Everyone else left at least half of their food on the plate and was ready to leave it. Boldy, I insisted I save the unfinished (and untouched) Monte Cristo halves, and that’s what I’m having for lunch today!

                                  Ultimately, there will probably be no more “go agains” to “Bennigan’s”. :-(

                                  1. cuccubear Mar 17, 2009 10:26 AM

                                    Re: The Bennigan’s Monte Cristo

                                    I just had the leftovers for lunch, and the verdict...very greasy without a lot of flavor. There were a few slices of ham (thin sliced lunchmeat kind) and American “cheese”. Can’t say I was impressed.

                                    1. mrbigshotno.1 Mar 18, 2009 10:03 AM

                                      Another yuppie overpriced "loosen the tie after work" joint out of business. Applebees can go too, gave them 3 chances.

                                      5 Replies
                                      1. re: mrbigshotno.1
                                        h
                                        HollyDolly Mar 18, 2009 02:07 PM

                                        Haven't eaten at one in years here in the San Antonio area. I think there are still some around but will have to check their website. The Applebee's on I-35 North in San Antonio is actually pretty good..I have eaten there several times
                                        and the food was quite good.It is busy all the time.
                                        That's like Marie Callender's , Olive Garden and Red Lobster all on the same I-35 access road in the Windcrest-San Antonio area.Even the Shoney's is busy.
                                        I ate with my sister and her fiance at Marie Callender's for Thanksgiving when they came down from New York. The food was very fresh and had good flavour.
                                        I have eaten there before off and on over the years, and haven't complained about the food.

                                        1. re: HollyDolly
                                          mrbigshotno.1 Mar 18, 2009 05:51 PM

                                          All though I've never ate a meal there Marie Callander's is OK in my book. I come home to Arizona 3 times a year and get a rhubarb pie for the family. It's special order order but they do a great job on the pie.

                                          1. re: mrbigshotno.1
                                            r
                                            RCTRIPLEFRESH5 May 2, 2010 06:10 PM

                                            is this the same bennigans i dont see an eidson nj one?
                                            http://www.bennigans.com/locator.php they have new stores coming soon dont look outta business!

                                            1. re: RCTRIPLEFRESH5
                                              Angelina May 4, 2010 08:27 AM

                                              I have not driven by that way in ages. Maybe the Edison one did close. No lose for the area anyway!

                                              1. re: Angelina
                                                g
                                                Gatsby1 May 7, 2010 10:43 PM

                                                I think the Edison location was probably the New Brunswick location on RT. 1 N just after the overpass of Rt. 18. Think that place closed awhile back. Had some good times there 10 + yrs. ago as an undergrad at RU (not necessarily good food, but it was passable and actually affordable on a students budget).

                                      Show Hidden Posts