Chef Gillian Clark’s Silver Spring Restaurant, The General Store, Closed. Petworth and NoMa Projects Moving Forward

The Washington Post’s Tim Carman reported yesterday:

Earlier today business partners Gillian Clark and Robin Smith dropped this bomb on the General Store’s Facebook page:

“It’s with heavy hearts we’re announcing that The General Store is closed. For the entire 4+ years we’ve been involved with this building we have been bullied by the landlords. The landlord has not paid his back taxes and the county is taking back the building. We want to take this opportunity to thank all of you for being more than just customers. We consider all of you friends.”

Tim wonders if it will have any affect on her Kitchen on K St (in NoMa) plans. WBJ’s Missy Frederick has some details on the closing. Though, I also wondered if it would affect her Petworth plans.

I was able to email with Chef Clark and she assured me that both the NoMa and Petworth projects are moving forward. Here is exactly what she said, “We are full steam ahead on other projects. No worries.” Additionally I’m told funding is in place, a contractor has been selected and plans are with DCRA. So hopefully good news soon! Though we are likely to see the NoMa space open first.

Stay tuned for more updates on both spaces.

17 Comment

  • Hey PoP, I’m not sure if it’s too Hill-specific but there’s news that the Kingsman Dog Park will be opening on Friday.

  • A bit more of an update. On the facebook page she wrote: “The General Store Thank you all for the kind words and wishes. We are working hard to open The Kitchen on K St. and The Georgia Avenue Meeting House. We are in the permitting process for both places. I will do my best to update this site to let you all know the status.”

  • Perhaps this will inspire some more hilarious youtube videos.

  • I out myself as an ex-resident of PoPville with this comment, but I could be at The General Store in less than a minute from my house. I’m going to miss the occasional weekend chicken & waffles or just-feel-like-it weeknight run for some lemon chess pie and collard greens.

  • I love that NoMa is blowing up, because of what it does for Eckington. I feel like the Eckingtonians have been given too hard a time. It’s a pretty little neighborhood, and soon it will have a couple -nice- dining options! Their home values are going way, way up from where they were 2 years ago.

  • Bad news for Petworth that the Georgia Ave Meeting House is going to have to wait for the NoMa development first. That really rots since the Petworth plans have supposedly been in place for years now. How long can she hold on to that space without really doing anything about it? PoP, your story on the Kitchen on K St says the Georgia Ave restaurant would be opening in March 2011. Now it comes out that work hasn’t even started. I’m losing patience, and also worried that someone known more for restaurant closings than openings might not be the best thing for Petworth.

    • Knowing how she operates, don’t hold your breath on any of these places ever actually opening. She could very well wake up one morning and abruptly change plans.

  • I had long ago written off the possibility that she’d be taking the place on GA Ave since literally NOTHING NOTHING NOTHING has happened there in over a year. It’s funny to hear her make it sound as if it’s imminent.

  • Any update on Billy Simpson’s?

  • This lady obviously doesn’t know how to run a business.

    Good food, but she’s ran two restaurants into the ground now.

  • You shall all kneel before us when we get our new Petworth Safeway!

  • Looks like she isn’t giving the full story. The Wapo announced the landlord’s side here:

    Turns out she owed $160k in back rent…which in turn meant he couldn’t pay about $10k in taxes. He has to take her to court, the judge ruled in the landlord’s favor so Clark would of had to pony up the $160k in order to keep the restaurant open. Instead, she closed and had this brilliant remark:

    “Everyone gets behind in their rent or asks the landlord to accept less for a while. That’s how we all survive in slow times and how we both coexist to make money. Spiro is a bully and uses the courts to get his way. He has never wanted to work with us throughout this ordeal.”

    Umm, no not everyone gets behind on rent, esp $160k and nearly 1 year behind. Sounds like the courts were his only option. I don’t know how she is getting anyone to finance her future projects or agree to sign a lease with her. As much as I would love another local restaurant in Petworth, I’d prefer one by a respectable business owner, not this clown.

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