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Bertucci’s in Clarendon Suddenly Closes

by Katie Pyzyk March 9, 2012 at 9:30 am 9,037 91 Comments

Bertucci’s restaurant in Clarendon has suddenly closed down.

When we talked to an employee at the Market Common location two weeks ago, he said the restaurant had been renegotiating its lease. At the time, he said it was in no danger of shutting down and customers could still make reservations.

Last night the restaurant was closed and dark, and nobody could be seen inside. The Bertucci’s lighted signs have already been taken down.

  • Clarendon

    And, the great Clarendon pizza shakeout continues…

  • FREDTERP

    Why couldn’t the Linen n Things in Pentagon Row be this efficient with removing their sign. Their sign was up six months after they vacated? FREDTERP

    • Tabs

      I loved seeing “The All Beta Store” on a boarded up storefront on South St, Philadelphia, well into the early 90s.

      TABSTERP

      • Lloyd Christmas

        HERPDERP

        • UMd

          TERPSLURP

  • we toured the space with a prospective tenant about a year and a half ago, this is not a surprise…

    • Lloyd

      Next time you have some awesome inside information like that, think about sharing it with the employees of the place about to close. They get shafted when stuff like this happens.

      • Timing is Everything

        A year and a half ago??? Talk about way way way advance warning.

      • InsideEdition

        I read here that McGinty’s Potomac Yards had closed suddenly, and told someone who worked at P. Brennan’s. The owners and GM hadn’t said a word. Suddenly their fave employees from the closed place show up for work, displacing a few…

      • dude-
        the tenant we were showing the space is neither retail nor food service…

        • Lloyd

          Not my point, bro.

          But really, when your info is 18 months old it kind of loses its zip. As someone else said, it’s been listed on the leasing site for a while too.

          • thecharlesriver

            Why is it his responsibility to tell the employees?

            And…. the hourly unskilled labor that was there a year and a half ago is most likely long gone.

          • Paula

            I’m a little late in reporting this by Lloyd standards, but the world may or may not end on December 21, 2012, or because the Mayan calendar didn’t have a leap year, it might actually be 2007.

            Tell everyone you see, everywhere you go. They won’t think it’s weird. And they’ll thank you later for changing their life and lifestyle just in time.

  • kdub

    Wait. There was a Bertucci’s in Clarendon? HA. Shocked it lasted this long. Come’on Clarendon class it up with something authentic and interesting, enough with the chain restaurants.

    • Jon B

      No non-chain retail allowed in Market Common!! Or, at least it seems that way…

    • meggles

      unless of course, it’s a dunkin donuts 🙂

      • Tre

        +175

  • Scott

    This space has been showing up for lease on the market common website for at least a year, seems like this has been in the works for a while.

  • ArlyMon

    Tandoori Nights is next…

    • CourthouseChris

      Tandoori Nights is frequently far busier (and imho far better) than Bertucci’s ever was.

    • Bandersnatch

      Noooo! I love me some Raj Kachori….

  • 2nd floor retail is tough at best – 2nd floor food service is almost a death nell

    • Burger

      Correct. The person at Bertucci’s that signed off on that deal has long been canned for that dumb decision.

    • Tre

      although Elevation Burger would be a perfect fit…

  • Bertucci’s Fan

    OK the food wasn’t that great, but it was so easy to slip in there with the children for a fun dinner. There were a lot of tables and it never seemed too crowded. The staff was always helpful letting my family sit away from the adult patrons so we wouldn’t have to worry about disturbing anyone. It was a family friendly place.

    • Frank

      Faccia Luna seems to be kid friendly, and you probably won’t disturb anyone there, either. At the very least, it won’t be a surprise to others in the restaurant that you brought your children with you to eat dinner.

      • Josh S

        Uh, no. Frequently a wait on weekend nights. I think they’re doing well for themselves.

        • Bertucci’s Fan

          I usually take the kids early in the week. Thanks for the heads up Frank, I’ll give it a try.

      • GreaterClarendon

        It’s nearly impossible to bring a stroller into Facia Luna – so not toddler friendly (even during early dinner time).

        • Arlington, Northside

          Park it outside and walk the kid in. We never had a problem

  • courthound

    Deja Vu. Didn’t someone mention this in the forums a week or so ago?

  • Chris Slatt

    I am not at all surprised, they were never busy enough. That Bertucci’s was my go to restaurant when I had a big group of people who wanted to go out for Dinner on a Friday or Saturday night at the last minute. The never had a problem accomodating 12 or 15 people at the drop of a hat. Not a good sign.

  • KARLington

    These spots are ridiculous choices for non-destination eateries, which is why they keep turning over. Restaurants benefit from street-level placement because you can see if they are occupied (hm, must be good) or empty (ew, no one else eats there..) Whoever made the choice for these restaurants to land there is ignorant, and the broker that sold them the bill of goods is laughing his head off.

    • Rebecca

      +1.

  • Bandersnatch

    That leaves Faccia Luna as the last more-than-pizza Italian restaurant in Clarendon. I know that people love to hate FL but they’ve always treated my family really well- I’d much rather have them around than Bertucci’s and they probably could use the displaced business.

    • Balderdash Champion

      Faccia Luna is legit. Underrated I think.

      • Arlington, Northside

        Faccia Luna is great, but they are in trouble if Pete’s starts serving pasta.

        • Clarendonian

          Petes does serve pasta and it is amazingly better than Faccia Luna’s.

          • Arlington, Northside

            Then, I guess I know where I am going tonight!

    • Undecimo

      Love the Faccia Luna. That Bertucci’s was always oddly dirty, murky and unappealing, unlike the other locations I’ve been to.

    • nunya

      ++!

    • LP

      Faccia is great, the owner is nice and the pizza is damn good.

      Unfortunately, I don’t think they’ll be getting a lot of business from Bertucci’s – since they really didn’t have much business initially.

      • Arlingtonian

        Well all of these comments about it have convinced me to try it out this weekend 🙂

      • James

        The owner is a perv…I can’t tell you how many times he’s stared at either my girlfriends cleavage, or a friends cleavage and not even try to be indirect about it.

        • Move it on over Buddy

          @ James… so true. He does like the young ladies. He also owns Boulevard Woodgrill. Love how he spreads out a newspaper at the bar and takes up space for three.

  • Bender

    Un Sus Tain A Ble

    All of this hyper-growth and hyper-dense business is unsustainable.

    This wasn’t the first, it won’t be the last, no matter how much air you pump into that bubble. Eventually it is going to burst.

  • JamesE

    First Chevy’s now this? The great Arlington restaurant bubble is upon us.

  • Arlingtonian

    It’s Friday and I’m feeling silly, so the last two sentences of this article made me giggle as it sounded like Hardy Boys creeping around scoping out the scene

  • Not surprised at all, as I always had some issue like cold food, foreign objects in my food, or poor service at the Clarendon Bertucci’s. Never had those issues at the Foggy Bottom Bertucci’s.

  • Here’s and idea

    Put a Sephora there. I’m surprised there isn’t one in Clarendon already.
    Bonus: ladies can get their makeup-on before they get their workout-on at the Clarendon Golds.

    • meggles

      fantastic idea. bye bye, paycheck!

      • sue

        YEs! Sephora!!! I will never have to go to a Mall again….or into georgetown.

        blue mercury does not carry the range of products that sephora does. it is an upscale spa/beauty salon. different markets.

        • Balderdash Champion

          hahahaha – sweet pull there about the clarendon golds girls – so true

    • LP

      Blue Mercury is already going in across the street.

      Hasn’t everyone concluded that the last thing Clarendon needs is multiple iterations of the same thing?

  • Arlington, Northside

    It was too hidden away in that location. Not sure what would do well up there. Too bad the old Ben and Jerry’s that used to be up there didn’t have a sidewalk level space.

    • Peggy

      It lasted for a pretty long time though. Or am I forgetting a previous restaurant that was in there?

      • nunya

        i think it was some upscale asian place. along the lines of a pf changs.

        • Arlingtonian

          I remember that. Didn’t it have a big scuplture of a bowl of noodles or something at the front?

          • Clarendon

            I think it was a Big Bowl franchise. They may still have one in Reston. Not sure if it was the Bertucci spot or the Tandoori spot though.

          • AllenB

            The Big Bowl, or something like it was in the Tandoori Nights spot. Bertucci’s has been there since Market Common opened, I’m pretty sure.

          • Peggy

            Thank you, that is what I thought.

          • Novanglus

            Tandoori Nights replaced Big Bowl. Bertucci’s has been there the whole time, but the neighborhood has changed.

            To be successful in that space, a restaurant needs to draw people based on reputation and not just location. Think local ownership groups like Ray’s, Chef Geoff’s, Black’s/Addie’s, Great American (Carlyle/Coastal Flats/Silverado), or national names like Emeril or Wolgang Puck.

          • nunya

            my vote is ray’s. he’s local….. has three places in “upper” rosslyn, two in courthouse. why not clarnedon. heard he was thinking about a seafood place, ray’s the net, a while back.

          • OldTimer

            @nunya… as long as they don’t ray’s the rent.

          • James

            Put a PF Changs up there…and if not, then chain restaurant it and put in a few in the spot. Maybe a McDonalds and something else.

            Clarendon needs a McDonalds for the lunch crowd. Make it one of the upscale ones like in L.A.

          • DCCHughes

            I would kill for a Great American Restaurant outpost in that spot. Although, I don’t really need a reason to blow anymore of my paycheck on eating out in Clarendon. Love all the food, not loving all the $$$.

  • Pizza Man

    Bertucci’s was awful. Hopefully a nice massage parlor goes in…something swank for the travelling man.

  • JamesE

    Taco Bell

    • Josh S

      Personally, I think it should be an Artisphere outlet.

  • Mick Way

    I wish nothing but ill upon any store in there as long as the owners continue to tow cars promptly at 11 p.m.

    “Hey Everyone. Look! We have parking that looks exactly like the parking on the street. We even have meters that look just like real meters.”

    Oh, BTW, we’ll tow your a$$ at 11:01. Have a nice day.

    • And the Wrong Ways

      I’m sorry, can you clarify? Which meters are not real meters?

      • James

        Have you not read the meters in the horseshoe there. They tow if your time expires.

      • Clarendon

        Referring to the meters that are in the semi-circular (horseshoe) drive that goes through the Market Common. They are real, of course but they are not owned by the County – they are owned along with the street by the REIT that owns Market Common. Therefore, they can tow you off their property whenever they like. They also set the rates etc. Some people think they are parking on a public street because they look a lot like public meters.

        • And the Wrong Ways

          Well, I, for one, had no idea they weren’t regular meters. Huh.

  • ZippyDog

    “customers could still make reservations”
    People make reservations for Bertucci’s? Who knew.

  • Cruiser

    There was one?

    • Josh S

      Isn’t that a Stripes line?

      • Quoth the Raven

        “Son, there ain’t no draft no more.”

  • Biker2

    Big Bowl was much better. I was sad when Big Bowl left. Not so sad when Bertucci’s went under.

  • Balderdash Champion

    This spot needs something more high-end, destination dining type feel. They could easily do valet parking. Something that Arlington is sorely lacking is a restaurant by a well-known chef, where for now you need to go into DC for.

    • Ballstonian

      Maybe Jose Andres wants to expand

    • Missing the Obvious

      The Colonel is pretty famous ……..

  • AbeFroman

    Lets be honest, no loss. Nothing to see here, move along. Another halfass chain restaurant out of business, which is good for the quality local establishments we currently have.

    • Jason S.

      Like Baja Fresh, Cheesecake Factory, and Starbucks.

  • novasteve

    Is it big enough to be Dremos?

    • Arlington, Northside

      No 🙁 not big enough for a Bardo’s revival either.

  • LPS4DL

    To each his own. That Bertucci’s was ok. Faccia Luna is not.

  • TMP

    Ironic. We were there last week and ended up walking in then walking back out. It’s a horrible location for a restaurant, as you can’t easily see it and kind of have to know it’s there. It’s too big; it’s a huge space and I’ve never seen it crowded.

    We walked out because we hadn’t been there in years and they had changed the menu. Nothing on the dinner menu seemed to be under $15 aside from personal pizzas. Sorry, but that’s too much for chain Italian where they’re probably reheating frozen stuff. I could get chicken parm there for $15 with choice of soup or salad and wonder if it was fresh made OR I could go to locally owned Metro 29, know it was fresh made, get soup and salad and chicken parm and spaghetti for $17, and the portions are huge.

    Something off the lunch menu would have been perfect price and size wise in the $9 range, but they stopped serving off that menu at 3PM.

    Bad location, too big to fill, and overpriced…seems like a recipe for closing down.

  • Ashton Heights Bob

    How about a homeless shelter?

    • Jason S.

      I was hoping for a TGIFriday’s to go in that spot. A TGIFridays would save me from going to Skyline (unsavory types there) or ALL THE WAY out to Tyson’s Corner for the delicious Jack Daniels steaks.

      If we can’t get a TGIFriday’s, maybe we can get an Applebee’s.

      • MrCar

        There are Applebees close by in Falls Church, but anyway, for the full Applebees experience, we like to load up the Yukon and head out to Manassas. The kids like chanting App-El-Bees! App-El-Bees on the way there and it gives them time to finish their Oreo-cookie Shakes that we get them for the ride home.

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