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THIS RESTAURANT IS CLOSED Houlihan's Restaurant Review: This may be the oldest chain of its kind in the U.S., the one that started it all in 1972. Since then, the familiar red awning attracts fans who can recite the menu backwards if you ask them. This recognizability is instant feel-good to the folks who depend on the potato soup, or burgers, or salads to be fresh and tasty. Different cultures have added different items---there’s bruschetta now, among the appetizers, and sections of the huge menu reserved for Mexican, Italian or grills. Many like to sit in a booth, or at the bar in the artifact-filled rooms, and have just wings, potato skins, or fried mushrooms, and a beer. Some will want a full meal, but all unite on dessert, be it N.Y. cheesecake, or the signature brownies.