Downtown Borders to become a Clyde’s restaurant

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A reader noted in the comments of a previous post about this development. The Washington Post’s Jonathan O’Connell reports:

“Clyde’s Restaurant Group plans to open a two-story, 35,000-square-foot restaurant in space currently occupied by a Borders bookstore in downtown D.C. next year, creating one of the city’s biggest dining options and the 14th site in the Clyde’s chain.

The space, in the ground floor and basement levels of the former Garfinkel’s department store building on 14th Street NW, is across the street from the Willard Hotel and two blocks from the White House.”

30 Comment

  • More mediocrity or are they going to try upscale this time?

  • Dang, I like that Borders store.

  • Oh Clydes is a favorite. Always enjoyed bringing family to their restaurant in Bethesda. That seems like a smart choice for right there.

  • Is it really that hard to go east 7 blocks to the other one? I didn’t realize that the one in Chinatown was THAT busy.

    • The one in Chinatown is very busy.

      I didn’t even know there was a Borders there.
      I live in Columbia Heights but always went to Friendship Heights when I wanted to go to Borders. I guess that’s why they won’t be trading at this location anymore.

    • You don’t even need to go that far…Old Ebbitt Grill is just 2 blocks away and it’s the same owners/exact same menu.

  • Six blocks away from a different Clyde’s? Who do they think they are, Starbucks?

  • Oh, and a whole block away from Old Ebbit, which they also own and serve the standard Clyde’s menu at.

  • True. A difference without a distinction.

  • Though I’m not a huge fan of tehir food, the Clydes in Chinatown is good for unplanned large groups for Happy Hour, you can always find room.

  • I’ve never had a bad meal at any Clyde’s group restaurant. Never had a fantastic meal, either.

  • Clydes makes sense for this location. This part of town needs another solid lunch/happy hour/not-too-expensive dinner option, especially considering the presence of many large law firms and government offices nearby.

  • Yet another bookstore (location) bites the dust. Woe is us. Are people really reading that much more Kindle?

    Not that I have anything against Clydes.

  • Thanks for mentioning that it’s the old Garfinkel’s site. As a Washingtonian, I sure remember that store.

  • my mom loves clydes

  • ugh…. More chaining of the chains
    Macaroni Grill / Marriott / by any other name

    I must be wrong though cause they are always packed.

    Back in the day, Clydes Georgetown (the only one) was quite nice with really good food. Now they are just dirty rich.

  • Ugggh. TGIFridays at double the price. I had horrible clearly pre-frozen food the one time I ate at the Chinatown Clyde’s. Also maybe the worst decor of any restaurant in DC. Pretty much the last place I would EVER eat downtown … double uggghhhhh.

  • Darn… I like that Borders. Maybe they can move up here to Columbia Heights (DCUSA). Mediocre food should not replace good books!

    • Border’s isn’t moving anywhere – the business model is done. Just like Netflix & the web has made Blockbuster video obsolete, Amazon and to a far lesser but growing extent e-readers have made brick’n’mortar bookstores increasingly a thing of the past. Even ‘specialty’ neighborhood book stores like Lambda Rising and Politics and Prose are gone, and those were the models that many thought would be able to hold on.

      • Politics and Prose is not gone! The long-term owners are looking for a buyer to continue running what is still a successful and popular bookstore.

  • That’s a great Borders. And I agree with others that the Clyde’s in Penn Quarter along with Old Ebbitt should be sufficient Clyde’s in this part of town. Blech~!

  • Alas I agree that bookstores (like record stores) are a dying industry. I really enjoy browsing both so it saddens me, but gotta face economic reality. That Borders had to compete with a B&N a few blocks away. Hopefully this will at least help ensure that B&N’s viability for the immediate future; I think it is the only bookstore left in downtown DC, so given its monopoly and great location it should do OK.

  • Now we’re sad at the loss of a Borders..wasn’t it only a few years that we all agreed that Borders was the Man… Squashing the mom and pops bookstores. Anyhow Clydes = meh.

  • Clyde’s is decent- Nothing worth writing home about, but good.

    It may not be the super chic, nouveau, glam, high-priced, small portion bistro food that many people go for, but it’s fine.

  • I’m ashamed to say it, but I will miss that Borders. I work around the corner from 14th & F and the store was a great [air conditioned] distraction-from-work spot.. and I think there must be hundreds of other office-drones who would agree with me.

    That said, I think I purchased 4 items over my 3 years working downtown, so I guess I should have seen this coming.

  • The worst Clyde’s has to be the one in Chevy Chase.

  • I hear it’s going to be a new concept to them, and not named Clyde’s–interested on what it will be like. And having a place to see live music is going to be great.
    Loved the Border’s but I buy most books online. Sorry to see it go.

  • wish borders was staying. perfect place for it.

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