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Another bar/restaurant bites the dust


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On 9/19/2020 at 12:26 PM, kermit said:

No one was a bigger fan of Spoons than me. Having said that, I did talk to Stephen about looking for a Southend location about 12 years ago (about a year after Bill died). While he was intrigued, he clearly wanted something turnkey that just didn't exist at the time. He was also reluctant to leave his building due to the risk of loosing his core customers (but I’ll bet their average age was 60+ back then). I was trying to push him to evolve to be more like Clyde Cooper’s in Downtown Raleigh (with a bit of Queen City Q mixed in). I didn’t bring it up again, but I got the sense that declining business left him without the means to think about moving after that.

I am very sad they are gone, but the city (and food scene) evolved and the restaurant did not. Their effort to expand into dinner service did little more than make Stephen more tired.

I hope that someone will bankroll Stephen in a new place that is easier on him (maybe his only job is cooking and someone else runs the front) has a better location, and sells beer (not sure how he would feel about that). Hell, if I can find the right piece of real estate in the corporate wasteland that is now intown, that person might be me.

The Charlotte Observer ran a story about the closure of Spoons this past week. (I'll just say, it's a LOT of 'cue):

Hed 1 and part of story 1: https://www.charlotteobserver.com/entertainment/restaurants/article245892605.html:

Quote

The full story behind the closing of Spoon’s BBQ. (It wasn’t the pandemic that did it.)

Bill Spoon — who opened his Charlotte barbecue restaurant in 1963 and who died in 2007, the year after selling the joint to his grandson — came back to life last week in a dream.

It was just hours after Steve Spoon Jr. locked the doors of the iconic Bill Spoon’s BBQ on South Boulevard for the final time last Wednesday. As he and his wife Ashlie arrived home, they were still grappling with complicated emotions, still nagged by feelings of doubt about whether they’d made the right decision to call it quits.

The couple finally got into bed around 2 a.m., and as Ashlie slept, she had a vision of longtime server Cynthia Reed talking with Steve’s Papaw Bill.

“She was in tears and just told him, ‘Bill, we held on as long as we could. We did everything that we knew to do. It’s so hard and we’re all just kind of down on ourselves. We really hope that we made the right decision,’” Ashlie Spoon says.

“Now, if you knew Bill, he always had this smile on his face. It was like Santa Claus. He was just jolly. He was the most jolly man you’ve probably ever come across. And as Cynthia told him all of that in my dream, that smile never left his face. He said, ‘I know. I see it. I’m proud of you guys.’ He said, ‘It’s time. I agree with your decision.

“‘And you should have done it a long time ago.’”

Hed of Charlotte Ledger story from today:

Quote

Bill Spoon’s BBQ sold for $1M just 2 days after closing

I don't begrudge them the struggles they faced, nor their decision to close (the restaurant business is brutal) but be honest that we got out because it's brutal and we've had an offer we can't refuse on our land/location.

Edited by davidclt
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On 7/31/2020 at 2:15 PM, sclark said:

https://www.bizjournals.com/charlotte/news/2020/07/31/corkbuzz-permanently-closes-in-southpark.html

Corkbuzz in South Park has closed. Bummer. I thought they were excellent when they first opened, but quality seemed to slip over time. 

Dilworth Tasting Room is opening a second location in the old Corkbuzz location. 
 

Thats a solid win for those of us near SP. 

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14 hours ago, Bruco72 said:

Dilworth Tasting Room is opening a second location in the old Corkbuzz location. 
 

Thats a solid win for those of us near SP. 

The addition of cocktails and a little less stuffy  setup should do well.  We liked going to get a bottle of wine in the Cellar @ at Corkbuzz but the rest of the place was not our style.  Not sure how they are going to come up with patio seating for 50 tho as it currently seats maybe 20.

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Parliament Espresso and Coffee next door closed as well. It is going to be a long road to getting people back Uptown. 

Has anybody seen if people are showing up / interested in the weekend street closures on Tryon as well as the new globe art exhibits spread throughout Uptown? 

Edited by CLT2014
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4 hours ago, tozmervo said:

La Belle Helene closing is probably the first "holy crap" I've had for a COVID-related closure. Did not see that one coming, but in hindsight I guess shouldn't be surprised. Hopefully whoever takes it over will just reuse those incredible interiors. 

It is important to note that this was NOT a covid-related closure. They were operated by a billion dollar company. There was a company leadership change and it was decided to get our of the retail/restaurant business all together. 

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1 hour ago, Jt282506 said:

It is important to note that this was NOT a covid-related closure. They were operated by a billion dollar company. There was a company leadership change and it was decided to get our of the retail/restaurant business all together. 

I do say it was Covid related and the dearth of people uptown in the last few months.  If we went back to Jan/Feb times I am sure it would not be closing.  Lets face it uptown is almost a ghost town and has been since late March and the longer this continues the more casualties there will be.   This is not being negative but realistic.  Highest rents in the city or some of the highest and no customers do the math.  No one can last that long.  Our major employers need to try to bring back more of their staff before long term damage is done to uptown.  Look at Southend to see the contrast. 

https://www.bizjournals.com/charlotte/news/2020/10/21/french-brasserie-coffee-shop-close-in-charlotte.html

Edited by KJHburg
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On 10/21/2020 at 11:44 AM, CTiger said:

Bummer.  This was one of my go-tos for taking out of town guests and visitors from work.  I was always impressed with their food.

I was always impressed that such a well-capitalized restaurant could manage to get 3 B health inspections in such a short time from mostly training and procedure failings. 

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18 minutes ago, tozmervo said:

A big gut-punch for Uptown: Amelie's is closing their uptown location. 

So sad. Without special events and all the employees, there just aren't enough people in the metro area that are choosing to head to Uptown to spend their money recreationally. I myself am part of the problem... used to be in Uptown 5 - 6 times a week. Now been three times in 7 months. 

Edited by CLT2014
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17 minutes ago, tozmervo said:

A big gut-punch for Uptown: Amelie's is closing their uptown location. 

Yeah that sucks. 
 

yesterday I decided to to head over to south end for lunch, the difference between uptown and south end is STARK. 
 

uptown feels depressing, south end felt alive with all those apartment dwellers getting out and about for lunch. 
 

I just got a sandwich from Rhino, but the Stir patio was 75% full and the North Italia patio was 50%, not bad for 2 pm on a Thursday 

how this changes before there’s a vaccine, I have no idea. Probably no way to make it change. If I lived in south end, why would I go into uptown?

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I think it will take uptown years to recover from this.   as more and more companies delay return to the office this will continue to happen.  I talked to a friend who works in downtown Philly and he said the downtown area outside of protests is just homeless, very few  people moving about and he is one of the few office workers who needs to go into the office.   Further protests and riots will delay this downtowns including ours from healing.  Even with a vaccine which is coming soon I think many companies are rethinking their spatial needs and huge chunk of the uptown workforce may never return to the office.  Just very sad for Amelies. 

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27 minutes ago, Temeteron said:

And another casualty......Sammy’s Deli in Plaza Midwood is closing.  I think this is more due to the redevelopment of that shopping center though.  I didn’t frequent this spot too often but it’s even more upsetting as it is a Greek owned place :(

I saw that EBs is also moving from there - it had sounded a bit like something was imminent

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