Azure in Freeport has announced that they will be closing next week on February 23rd after almost 18 years in business. The closure was driven by a impasse in negotiating a renewal of their lease.
Here’s an except from their farewell post on Facebook:
Since 2002, we have been honored to be a part of the community of Freeport, both as Azure’s home and as our family’s hometown.
We are so grateful for all the staff members we have been lucky enough to have throughout the years; without them, Azure would never have been Azure. We are so proud to have watched all the now young professionals wait & buss tables or portion pasta in the kitchen summer after summer as they grew up.
Very few restaurants have been able to turn a profit every year in business but Azure is one of the few, thanks to you, our guests and our tremendous staff.
Thank you to all of you that have shared this experience with our family. You have made our lives and work special. You have given meaning to our daily labors with each smile and kind word. You have honored us with each marriage proposal, birthday and anniversary you celebrated at our tables.
We are forever grateful for the opportunity you have given our family to serve you.
Izzy’s Cheesecake has gone out of business. The owner’s posted this announcement yesterday on Facebook,
It is with much regret that we announce that Izzy’s Cheesecake is closing effective immediately. We would like to thank all of our customers for your support over the last thirty five years and will miss seeing you in our store. Due to the changing market conditions it was just not feasible for us to continue.
Onward and Upward!
Izzy and Jim
By this morning customers and fans of their 37 flavors of cheesecakes had posted 100+ comments in reaction to the news.
In the final days of the last year The 5 Spot announced they’d be going out of business effective December 29, 2019, “after the Eagles/Giants game”.
The Bangor Daily News reports that Rockin’ Ricky’s is planning to close in late December.
A few minutes after its 11 a.m. opening time on Thursday, nearly half-a-dozen patrons sat at the bar, sipping yellow beer from plastic cups. All of them had heard the news and none were enthused.
“I’m not too happy about it,” Mary Bonnevie said.
The announcement was released by Rockin’ Ricky’s on their Facebook page last night.
Portland Pulp has announced they’ve gone out of business.
The Free Street juice bar and cafe originally open in July 2017.
The Press Herald reports that Andy’s Old Port Pub has closed. The owners shared that there was a mix of factors including a broken walk-in refrigerator and difficulty in staffing the restaurant.
An emotional Jennifer Fox, who owns the pub at 94 Commercial St. with her husband, Rick Frantz, said they made the decision to close on Friday morning after they discovered they would not be able to repair a walk-in cooler. It was, she said, the last straw in “a cacophony of incidents that all kind of came at the same time.”
“As much as I’m going to miss it – it was my own child – it was time,” Fox said.
Easy Day at 725 Broadway in South Portland is closing and will re-open as a second location for Sea Dog Brewing “just after the holidays”.
According to announcement from Sea Dog, they “plan to keep all ten lanes of bowling and [are] very excited to undertake renovations and rebranding of the waterside facility.”
Flying Fox, a juice bar located at 98 Washington Ave, has announced their last day in operation will be October 19th.
It has been our greatest pleasure to provide healthy and nourishing food to this amazing community and support many hardworking Maine farmers over the past 4 years. It has been an absolute dream, from building out this colorful space to meeting countless new friends that have walked through the door in search of fresh plant-based food. That being said, the time has come for the Fox to hibernate for a while as we pursue other exciting ventures. Although we will certainly miss seeing all of you on a regular basis, it is with full hearts that we announce that Saturday, October 19th will be the last day of Flying Fox service at 98 Washington Avenue.
The 625 sq ft space is now available to lease for $1,600/month.
Here are a few more updates on closings, expansion and ownership changes:
- Anania’s Variety has announced they plan to close their store on Broadway in South Portland. According to their post on Instagram, Anania’s had sold that store to another owner a year ago and that individual has decided to move on.
Historical Note: Anania’s was originally founded by Joseph Anania in 1956 as the Newbury Street Market and was located on Newbury Street.
- The Press Herald reports that Pat’s Pizza on Market Street has changed hands. Pat’s will temporarily close as part of the transition.
- Old Port kitchen store Skordo has announced plans to open an additional location at the Maine Mall
The Bangor Daily News has taken a look at the factors impacting recent changes in the restaurant landscape in Portland.
Locals assert that the wave of sudden closures smacks of gentrification — which is fair, and also related to the workforce shortage. Rising rents have displaced the city’s typically younger ( and indebted) service-industry workers into suburbs like South Portland and Westbrook, making it hard for restaurants to retain staff, whose wages often depend on tips that can dry up in the winter months when tourism dwindles.