Tuesday, June 27, 2017

[UPDATE] Metro Diner Makes a Quick Exit in Roswell: Closed After 8 Months

Florida-based Metro Diner, which opened their first metro Atlanta location this past fall in Roswell, has closed.  The restaurant, which replaced Coldbrew's Sports Bar & Grill (which closed last April) occupied an end-cap location in the "880 Holcomb" center on Holcomb Bridge Road.

Metro Diner, not to be confused with Metro Cafe Diner (with locations in downtown Atlanta and Stone Mountain), is a growing chain that started in Jacksonville, Florida.  Since the Roswell opening, Metro Diner opened at the new Tanger Outlets in Pooler (near Savannah) and has locations coming soon to Macon, Augusta, and Columbus.  Sources say that the Macon restaurant is expected to open in mid-July, followed by Augusta in early September and Columbus "towards the end of the year."  A location previously planned for Athens has been abandoned. 

My friends at Scoop OTP broke news of the restaurant's sudden closure earlier today.  A Metro Diner spokesperson said of the closure "We love the Roswell area, especially the Roswell Residents. Unfortunately, this was a business decision that had to be made. We are doing our best to help all our team members transition." 

Metro Diner Roswell opened late this past October and closed this past Sunday.  There was no reason provided for the closure but the location was likely at least partly to blame.  

A new Metro Diner is expected to open in the Birmingham suburb of Hoover later this fall.  The new restaurant will open in Inverness Plaza, at the corner of Valleydale Road and US Highway 280.  Metro Diner will open in place of a shuttered Steak & Shake. Steak & Shake, like Roswell's Metro Diner, had a previous cameo appearance in Hoover, having opened in the plaza in June 2014, and closing this past December.

Father-and-sons founders John Sr., Mark and John Jr. Davoli purchased the original Metro Diner in 2000 (it first opened in 1992).  In 2010, the restaurant was featured on Food Network's "Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives."  Soon after, the restaurant went from $900,000 in annual sales to nearly $2 million annually.  Slowly, the restaurant grew, corporate locations first, and then franchising.  

The Davolis subsequently brought in ConSul Hospitality Partners to aid in the restaurant's growth. The group  consists of Hugh Connerty, the original franchise partner of Outback Steakhouse and former CEO of Outback Steakhouse International, along with Outback founder Chris Sullivan and Carl Sahlsten, former president of Carrabba’s Italian Grill.  The trio purchased a 50% stake in the business in 2014, and exercised their option to purchase the remaining 50% the following year.  

Are you surprised that Metro Diner closed in Roswell?  What would you like to see replace it in Roswell? Where else would you like to see Metro Diner open in metro Atlanta?

Please share your thoughts below.


Douglas Green said...

Really liked the food. Bad location.

Jenna Brown said...

It was almost empty the two times we ate there. Good food, but I don't know if people even realized what they could get there's.

J Leeds said...

We enjoyed the food, but for whatever reason didn't go that often. We'll miss them.

Anonymous said...

Was busy the 4 times I went. I don't agree with the location challenge - Brookwood Grill shares a parking lot and has been thriving for years. Will certainly be missed.

Anonymous said...

Wanted it to be a hit , but the food was terrible....not upscale enough compared to other local diners. So sad!

Anonymous said...

I live within a mile of this location and never went. we frequented the former Coldbrew's much more often. Coldbrew's offered great prices on local brews, showed UFC fights, and welcomed our dog on the patio. I don't think we needed a Metro Diner with Peachtree Diner right across the street. I'd rather support local businesses than regional/national chains.

Anonymous said...

I was always puzzled by the location choice. considering diners are so rare in Atlanta, why would you open one across the street from one of the few locally owned successful ones?

Anonymous said...

The staff was friendly enough, but slow to bring food to the table. The food itself was nothing spectacular either.