11 Famous Steakhouses That Have Closed This Year
We have lost hundreds of popular restaurants during the pandemic, from neighborhood favorite mom-and-pop operations to decades-old icons that were cultural fixtures in their respective cities.
Below is a list of legendary steakhouses that have shut down this year, including some fan-favorite chains that have closed several locations.
For more, check out 9 Restaurant Chains That Closed Hundreds of Locations This Summer.
The famed Italian steakhouse, which has hosted A-listers like President Obama, Leonardo DiCaprio, and George Clooney, filed for bankruptcy on behalf of seven of its locations across Miami, Puerto Rico, Las Vegas, Long Island, and Atlantic City earlier this year. The filing didn't include their New York City, Florida, Tennessee, and Pennsylvania locations. Six of the seven bankrupt locations were closed as of August, but co-owner Gerald Katzoff noted the company hopes to reopen those restaurants as soon as possible.
Ruth's Chris Steak House
After 28 years, the River North location of this high-end Chicago steakhouse closed its doors permanently. The restaurant closed down in March during statewide mandates and never reopened. The place was known among local and visiting meat-lovers for their prime steaks and 500-degree plates. Luckily, Chicagoans don't have to bid farewell to Ruth's Chris because two sister locations in Northbrook and South Barrington will remain open.
Palm Too Steakhouse
A staple among New York steakhouses, Palm Too has shuttered after nearly five decades on the scene. It was located just across the street from the location that used to house the original Palm steakhouse, which shut down in 2015. A favorite among New Yorkers and celebrities, the steakhouse was known as a charming haunt with consistently great food. While Palm locations in Hell's Kitchen and Tribeca are staying put, the loss of one of the two original locations is a devastating blow to the classic steakhouse repertoire of NYC.
According to local reports, one of San Francisco's longest-standing restaurants has quietly gone out of business, and the details of the closure are still unknown. The restaurant had been in business for 92 years, and closed its doors last year for what was to be a temporary period of time due to a substantial renovation. However, the property that housed the steakhouse is now listed as available for lease.
Lawry's Prime Rib
Another prominent Chicago steakhouse is going out of business. The location in the Historic Downtown area announced that it will be closing its doors permanently at the end of this year. Lawry's CEO Ryan Wilson told the Tribune that several factors influenced the decision to close, including the lease expiration, the pandemic, and recent protests and vandalism downtown. The 82-year-old California-based steakhouse chain also operates a Beverly Hills location of Lawry's, and has two other franchised restaurants in Dallas and Las Vegas.
Pacific Dining Car
This century-old restaurant was a true legend in downtown Los Angeles. Open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, it welcomed and served colorful customers of all stripes—from black-tie-clad guests to strippers, according to 24/7 Wall St. Its Santa Monica offshoot, which had been around for 30 years, closed down in June, while the original LA location was temporarily shuttered in March due to city-wide mandates. However, the restaurant's furniture, equipment, and memorabilia are being sold off at auction, and reps for the brand said operations are switching to online sales only.
Wolfgang Puck Steak
Wolfgang Puck's upscale steakhouse, located in the MGM Grand Detroit casino, will not reopen after the pandemic. This is the third restaurant in the celebrity chef's portfolio that is shutting down for good this year, following the closures of Five Sixty in Dallas and The Source in Washington, D.C. Michigan's casinos are now restricted to limited capacity operations, which has likely contributed to the decision to close.
RED, located in Vermillion, SD, has been around for a decade, offering "an upscale experience with small-town warmth," according to owners Jerad and Peggy Higman. Frequented by students, faculty, and guests of nearby University of South Dakota, it was one of the best-known and highest-quality restaurants in town. Unfortunately, Higmans announced in early September that the steakhouse won't be reopening.
One of the oldest and most affordable steakhouse chains is declaring Chapter 11 bankruptcy in order to try and reduce its debt, according to the company's statement. While this doesn't mean Sizzler is disappearing, some store closures are possible as the brand tries to renegotiate leases of the 14 company-owned locations. The 90 locations operated by franchisees shouldn't be affected by the filing, according to the statement.
While the parent company Bloomin' Brands is faring rather well during the pandemic with its portfolio of quickly-recovering brands including Carrabas and Bonefish Grill, they did have to trim some of their footprint. The cuts included 13 locations of Outback Steakhouse, nine of which were corporate and four franchises. However, there are still hundreds of open Outback locations nationwide.
Morton's The Steakhouse
The upscale steakhouse chain with dozens of nationwide locations has been downsizing this year. According to The Denver Post, Morton's had closed down a restaurant in their city, as well as several more, including in New Orleans and Indianapolis.
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