American Roadhouse at the Pencil Factory flats & shops on Decatur Street in downtown Atlanta has closed.
The restaurant opened last spring, added dinner service this past August, and closed in late December. Surprisingly, the restaurant was operated by Ed Udoff, a Cornell graduate who started and ran the original American Roadhouse in Virginia-Highland for over 23 years. Udoff sold the original location this past November to Emile Blau, with whom he was acquainted from their shared time at Bone's Restaurant in the 1980s.
I've been a fan of the original location in Virginia-Highland for years, but had never made it to the new location. I'm rather perplexed as to why the restaurant didn't last, given the number of students in the area, as well as the limited breakfast options there. Some sources say Udoff may have been looking to retire, which begs the question: why he would have opened the second location in the first place?
In any case, the closing seems to have gone unnoticed in the local foodie media, which may lead one to surmise that no one cared. In an equally unexciting turn of events, the restaurant has apparently already been leased. Chow Bing, a Chinese bistro, will soon open in place of American Roadhouse.
Are you a fan of American Roadhouse? Were / are you surprised by their short life at the Pencil Factory flats & shops? Does the idea of a Chinese bistro excite you?
Please share your thoughts below.