It was an exciting year for restaurant debuts, but there were also plenty of shutters to make way for new development. Eater has counted at least 104 restaurant closings in the area this year (this includes major players, single location closures and small chains entirely exiting the area), and there likely were even more.
Find a story stream of all 2015's closure news here. Is something missing? If so, send a note to email@example.com.
Readers' Saddest Closures
Eater asked readers to vote for the saddest closure of the year. (A note: CakeLove, Monroe's Restaurant and Hello Cupcake's departures had not yet been announced when the poll ran.) Here are the places they're most sad to see go:
1. Willow: Tracy O'Grady's cozy Ballston neighborhood restaurant announced its closure back in September. The restaurant was known for its great pastries and its ambitious, often vegetarian-friendly cooking.
2. Stetson's: This no-frills bar was one of the pioneers in the U Street neighborhood. It shuttered at the end of October.
3. Chef Geoff's downtown (pending): It was a double whammy for Chef Geoff's closures: the Rockville location closed in late fall, and the last day of business for the downtown location is New Year's Eve. The building is being redeveloped, so downtown diners will have to find a new source for cheap happy hours, great burgers and convenient pre-theater dining.
4. Chief Ike's Mambo Room: March brought last call for this Adams Morgan institution. The divey bar had changed over the years and most recently was beloved for its comedy nights.
5. Gypsy Soul: R.J. Cooper's ambitious but struggling Mosaic District restaurant shuttered in August. The chef then revealed in December he'd be leaving D.C. for North Carolina.
Other NOTABLE DEPARTURES
Meskerem — One of the city's oldest Ethiopian restaurants closed in April
Jay's Saloon — Arlington loses a beloved dive bar to redevelopment
CakeLove — The bakery that arguably kicked off the cupcake craze in D.C. years ago closed its original (and final) location in December
McFadden's — Really only beloved by college kids, this bar's closure caused an uproar from GW students
DC Coast — A pioneer on K Street, this longtime source for D.C. power lunches will say goodbye New Year's Eve
most-read shutter story of 2015
Readers just kept clicking on the closing chapter of the story of Piratz Tavern. The oddball pirate-themed bar became famous during a drama-filled episode of "Bar Rescue" years ago.
100 Montaditos (multiple)
7 Stars Deli
Artfully Chocolate Alexandria
Bardia’s New Orleans Cafe
Benny’s Bar and Grill
UPDATE: Bethesda Barbecue Company
Bistro La Bonne
Black And Orange
Brasserie Monte Carlo
Bread and Brew
Bungalow Sports Grill Shirlington
Cafe Deluxe Gaithersburg
Cafe Phillips Downtown
Chef Geoff's Rockville
Crumbs & Coffee
DCity Smokehouse (original)
Den of Thieves
Dr. Clock’s Nowhere Bar
Flying Fish Alexandria
Frozen Yogurt Indulgence
Gaithersburg Silver Diner
Hans Pedr Kaffe
Hard Times Cafe Bethesda
Henry’s Soul Cafe
Kite Runner Cafe
La Tagliatella Arlington
Li Ho Food
Lime Fresh (multiple)
Long John Silvers Falls Church
McKeevers Irish Pub
UPDATE: Mio Restaurant (pending)
Modern Times Coffee House (in Politics & Prose)
UPDATE: Murasaki Tenleytown
Native Foods (multiple)
No 82 Steakout
UPDATE: Noodles and Co. (multiple locations)
Patty Boom Boom
Pizza Parts & Service
Pound the Hill
Ri Ra Clarendon
Rosa Mexicano Friendship Heights
Seasonal Pantry (market)
South China Alexandria
TD Burger Largo
Tara Thai Bethesda
Uptown Tap House