There are several restaurants I miss going to because either they're not chains, or else they're not in the parts of the country I visit regularly. I'm looking forward to:
1. Whataburger. Yeah, it's a fast food joint. It happens to have the best fast food chain hamburgers on the planet, and also very good breakfast stuff.
2. James Coney Island. This hot dog chain started out in downtown Houston in the 1920s, and has been a tradition ever since. Their chili dogs are to die for. Paul claims their Chicago dogs are also excellent, but I wouldn't know, since I don't eat weird stuff like that.
3. Blackeyed Pea. Southern home cooking, in nice large portions and prepared properly.
4. Antone's. Po-boy sandwiches since forever, cheap and good.
5. Pe-Te's Cajun Barbecue. This purple and white-painted hole in the wall right opposite the entrance to Ellington Field is a favorite hangout of the NASA cognoscenti. Honest Cajun cooking, and lots of it.
There are others, I'm sure...which we'll take the time to explore thoroughly.
This is one of the things I enjoy most about traveling: eating stuff that I can't get at home. I never saw much point in eating the same food everywhere I go, and so I try to hit places typical of the area I'm in to broaden my culinary horizons. Katz's Deli in New York. Zingerman's in Ann Arbor. Tony's Jr. in Philadelphia for cheesesteaks. I wish I could remember the name of the excellent seafood place on the San Diego waterfront. Hell, Lindey's in the Twin Cities qualifies, even though I go there about once a month on average. Every city has them, and I truly enjoy seeking them out.