Romano’s Macaroni Grill on Concord Pike has closed its doors as the chain trimmed its restaurant roster. The sign for the locationwas removed, with location information deleted from its website. Even its Google Maps listing was pulled.
A company spokesperson issued the following statement: “Romano’s Macaroni Grill regularly reviews its portfolio of restaurants and made the tough decision to permanently close its Wilmington location. The company appreciates its team members’ hard work through the years and enjoyed being a part of the Wilmington community. Macaroni Grill thanks all of its loyal guests for their patronage through the years and hopes to be able to welcome them again soon at another restaurant located in 23 states throughout the USA.”
The restaurant specialized in mid-priced Italian food. It faced a crowded marketplace over the years, but profited from families and younger people who prefer chains.
The site is adjacent to a Chili’s which remains in operation. Romano’s, at one point, was owned by Brinker, which continues to operate Chili’s.
However, based on sales prices paid by buyers of the chain, Romano’s had been struggling.
Romano’s was sold this year by Ignite, a restaurant operator that owns Joe’s Crab Shack, which has a location on the Wilmington Riverfront. The price paid for Romano’s was a paltry $8 million for more than 150 restaurants.
In May, Ignite filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings while looking for a buyer for Joe’s. The Joe’s in Wilmington remains open.
Landry’s a restaurant and casino chain that formerly developed and owned the Wilmington Joe’s, put in a bid for the company.
Landry’s, which owns the Golden Nugget casino in Atlantic City and Charthouse restaurants around the country prefers waterfront locations that limited in number.
The Romano’s on Concord PIke was not the only chain restaurant to close this year on the busy corridor.
Lone Star closed its last Delaware steakhouse early this year. The company once had three restaurants in the state.