A group of legendary D.C. sports and media figures are closing Chatter two years after buying and rebranding the longtime bar and restaurant in Friendship Heights.
ESPN personality Tony Kornheiser announced the news today on an episode of his popular podcast, “The Tony Kornheiser Show,” which he records in front of a live audience at a studio built inside the restaurant. Kornheiser, the co-host of Pardon the Interruption and former sports columnist for the Washington Post, bought into the restaurant in 2017 as part of a group that included championship-winning former Maryland basketball coach Gary Williams, daytime TV host Maury Povich, and wealthy philanthropist Alan Bubes.
Chatter was originally Chadwick’s — or Chad’s — a bar and restaurant that enjoyed a 35-year run as a homey hangout for reporters. Kornheiser said on his podcast that Chatter was closing for renovations and remodeling and he was “not certain” if it would re-open. He said on the show that he would likely never record there again. In January 2017, Kornheiser announced the splashy purchase on his show.
On Friday afternoon, the restaurant’s website was blank, its Twitter account had been deactivated, and calls to the listed number went unanswered.
When reached by phone Friday, Kornheiser said the future of the space was “sort of open-ended” and that repairs needed to be made to the plumbing, air conditioning, and heating systems.
“We had a lot of fun doing it,” Kornheiser said. “We were not restaurateurs ourselves. We had a pretty old building that needed a lot of work. We just sort of decided that we’re not going to keep going forward by throwing more money into it. I was thrilled to own it. I was thrilled to do a podcast there. But it was just time. Everybody just decided it was time to move on.”