Tuesday, January 20, 2015
UPDATE: SMASHBURGER: WE ARE NOT CLOSING IN BETHESDA
Smashburger marketing manager Christine Ferris says Smashburger is "not closing our location in Bethesda. We love the area and have no plans on closing that location in the future."
Local dining expert Don Rockwell is reporting that Smashburger will close its downtown Bethesda location at 4903 Cordell Avenue. While there have been signs of the burger fad waning, and beef prices rising, I am somewhat surprised by the news. My reviews of many menu items were positive, and the prominent location and nice window views of the Woodmont Triangle made it a sign of the future redevelopment and vibrancy of the neighborhood.
The only negative I found was that they don't have special, limited-time menu items. That's not really any different from Five Guys, which has been extremely successful. But it does put them at a disadvantage when market competitors like BGR and Bobby's Burger Palace are constantly offering new burgers to lure burger fanatics in every month.
Given the recent closure of Roof upstairs in the same building, and that both restaurants lasted only about a year, one might wonder if there is a common issue that might have impacted both. The bigger picture suggests otherwise. Its Dupont Circle location closed last month, suggesting the issue could be with the chain itself, rather than a Bethesda or building-specific problem.