Thursday, December 27, 2018

[UPDATE] Crafthall Kitchen Closed Permanently

Upstart eatery Crafthall Kitchen has closed its first and only location after less than eight months in business.  The restaurant, developed by entrepreneur Jennifer Rotondo, was located alongside Honey Baked Ham, Le Madeleine, Tiff's Treats and  Zo√ęs Kitchen in the REI/Goodwill anchored Perimeter Square West shopping center in Sandy Springs. The restaurant opened April 5 and has not reopened following what was supposed to be a temporary closure on November 14.  
Originally launched as four separate concepts under one roof, the decision was made over the summer to merge the best sellers from the four separate menus into a single menu.  

At barely 1,600 square feet, the space was small, while the offerings and complexity of those offerings was not.  The confined space no doubt made operational efficiency incredibly important.  It's unclear what exactly led to the closure, but the restaurant made vague posts to their official Facebook page on November 14 and 18 indicating that the closure was temporary.  

"We are closing today and until further notice for training and reorganizing!  Keep an eye on our page- we'll let you know when we open up again!" -- November 14 

"Hey everyone- we are doing an overhaul on our management and will be closed for awhile to work everything out. We are hoping to open up again soon- we're sorry for any inconvenience!  Stay tuned for more info." -- November 18 

Despite the promise of updating everyone, there was no mention of the permanent closure on the Facebook page but the restaurant's website does indicate it.  

"Thanks for visiting Crafthall Kitchen. Unfortunately we've had to close. ​ We are so thankful for your support and wish everyone a wonderful Holiday Season!"

The undated message reportedly appeared on the website within the past few weeks and is now the only thing viewable on the site.  

ToNeTo Atlanta attempted to reach Rotondo in November as to the reasoning behind the closure and when reopening might occur.  Rotondo declined comment then, and we have have not reached out again.  

Prior to opening Crafthall, Rotondo spent time in marketing and "food innovation" consulting roles for a number of quick serve and casual eateries such as Flip Burger Boutique, Stevi B's Pizza Buffet and Tin Drum Asian Kitchen, among others. Rotondo, whose husband is Mike Rotondo, formerly CEO of Tropical Smoothie Cafe, was herself previously Director of Marketing for the smoothie franchise.  Mike  accepted the CEO role at Edible Arrangements this past July.  

What would you like to see open in place of Crafthall Kitchen in Sandy Springs?  Are you surprised that Crafthall Kitchen did not work out?  What was your favorite menu item at Crafthall Kitchen?

Please share your thoughts below  

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

A former Director of Marketing that did anything but operate efficiently. Color me shocked. Atlanta has a way of duping people into thinking they can succeed with asinine concepts in terrible locations.

Lee said...

Food was ok but hard to navigate and no real focus , spotty service, uncomfortable and noisy to dine,
I wish some adventurous restranteaur would open an old fashioned meat and two!
Enough with burgers, wings and tacos! Give me some wholesome, honey, slightly healthy food like that is like I’m eating at home but that I that I do not have to cook and and at a decent price!
Ohhh... even a buffet!

Roasters is the current winner in that category
And Longstreet in Gainesville
Simple, homey but a rarety!

Linda Steger said...

Agree with Lee...a meat and two that serves a homestyle breakfast. We have plenty nice, upscale dining places eclectic menus.

Anonymous said...

OMG I wish Old Country Buffet would open here! They have some of the best meatloaf and real mash potatoes. Sad that the new generation is killing restaurants like this. They want Moe's,Panera Bread, (gross e-coli) Chipotle, etc... mom's cooking to them is a Chicken finger Happy Meal at McDonald's!

Anonymous said...

This place was just... not a fun experience. The menu was all over the place, you had to order from a kiosk where the UI was so poorly designed, you had to have one of their staff hovering over you to help you figure out how to satisfy all the required selections for sauces and meats to even let you place an order. I think the location was fine, it was just more complicated than it needed to be and turned people away.

Anonymous said...

The place wasn't sanitary with the touch screen. This is the second failed concept why you such a technology. Rize was the first. It's not worth getting e coli or the flu just to eat out

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