Boka’s Lauded Fulton Market Japanese Spot Loses its Executive Chef


Mark Hellyar has left Momotaro

One of Chicago’s top Japanese restaurants has lost its chef as Mark Hellyar has departed Momotaro in Fulton Market. Hellyar opened and spent four years at the Eater Chicago 38 member that’s part of the Boka Restaurant Group. He said he left so he and wife Judy could raise his yet-to-be-born baby girl “close to the mountains and the ocean along with family and friends.”

Hellyar, who was also a partner at the restaurant, wasn’t ready to share where he and his family will move. He only said that there’s a chef/concept development job waiting for him at a new location. He worked at a few prominent Tokyo restaurants before moving to Chicago.

Boka Restaurant Group [Erik Kleinberg]
Mark Hellyar

“We moved here for Momotaro and have missed living closer to our friends and family ever since,” Hellyar said.

A Boka spokesperson teased an “exciting” announcement for Momotaro in the coming weeks, so stay tuned. The company called the shuffle a mutual decision.

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