Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Truffles Grill Extinguished in Georgia and Florida

Maryville, Tennessee-based Ruby Tuesday has ended their licensing agreement with Hilton Head Island, South Carolina-based Truffles.

The termination of the licensing agreement included the closure of Truffles Grill  locations in Buckhead and Winter Park, Florida this past Sunday the 7th.  I'm told there are no immediate plans for them to be reopened, under any name, by Ruby Tuesday. 

Ruby Tuesday entered into a licensing agreement with  the then three unit Truffles Grill in 2010 and expanded the concept to new markets including Atlanta and Winter Park Florida. In Atlanta, the restaurant took the place of a Ruby Tuesday restaurant. While it opened as Truffles Grill, it was later rebranded as Truffles Cafe to sound more casual. This past January, Ruby Tuesday announced they were closing their 13-unit Marlin & Rays seafood chain and were seeking a buyer for their two Truffles Grill restaurants.

I was never a fan of the Truffles concept in its Ruby Tuesday'd form and predicted its imminent closure on last months DeathWatch.  (Coincidentally, another DeathWatch prediction was Pizzeria Venti, less than a mile from Truffles on Lenox Road.  Pizzeria Venti closed within days of its DeathWatch mention.)
According to a company representative, Ruby Tuesday made the "strategic decision to discontinue their Truffles operations to focus on the Ruby Tuesday brand." 

Truffles three South Carolina locations remain owned by Price Beall, brother of  Ruby Tuesday founder and former president Sandy Beall.
Ruby Tuesday is in the midst of a company overhaul spearheaded by James J. "JJ" Buettgen.  Buetten  stepped down from his position as senior vice president and chief marketing officer at Orlando-based Darden Restaurants, Inc. this past November.  December 1st he began work at Ruby Tuesday as its president and chief executive officer.

Ruby Tuesday also owns the Lime Fresh Mexican Grill concept that opened three locations in Atlanta last year.  This past January the chain closed its Brookwood Hills location a mere eight months after opening it.  For now Lime locations in Buckhead and midtown remain open while previously announced additional Atlanta area locations remain on hold. 

Will you miss Truffles Grill from Buckhead?  What should open in the former Truffles Grill in Buckhead? Is there any hope in reviving the Ruby Tuesday brand?


Anonymous said...

Pizzeria Venti closed within days of its DeathWatch mention

Really? They have been on DeathWatch since 2011! I really love your blog and appreciate all the information you provide but don't try to say one of your predictions panned out just days later when in reality it's been years.

Anonymous said...

went to Truffles Grill a few weeks ago after seeing it on the Death Watch. I could see why it made your list. Food was not good, forgot part of the order, etc.

Anonymous said...

Why don't you just say every restaurant in Atlanta is on your Deathwatch, that way when one does close or relocate, like Pizzeria Venti, you can claim how awesome you are, even though you never ate there.

Anonymous said...

Considering 8 out of 10 restaurants close in the first year, 80% of your deathwatch should have been closed by default. Your list is more of a joke.

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