What’s Shakin’ in the Makin’ Vol. 5 – Wagamama

Back in Aug. 2011 a reader asked what was happening with the Wagamama that was supposed to be coming to the old Olson’s bookstore at 418 7th St, NW in Penn Quarter. Well, there is one small crack in the paper by the front doors and a peek inside reveals that early 2012 isn’t looking good:

10 Comment

  • ah

    Pathetic. Either open the restaurant or move on, and let them lease it to someone who will.

  • That’s some pretty prime real estate. How much money have they lost just holding onto it and doing nothing? I’ve been hearing about Wagamama coming to DC since I first moved here over four years ago.

    • The only explanation is that there is some sort of legal battle going on over the space preventing them from opening or saying anything about the situation (but also possibly getting them out of rent). This is all wild speculation but it is the only thing that makes sense.

      • ah

        Businesses do lots of things that don’t make sense.

        Anyway, perhaps Wagamama has decided not to expand so aggressively for legitimate business reasons, but they have leased the space long term and it is not viable either to sublease or terminate the lease. So they have concluded that paying the monthly rent is a loss, but less of a loss than building out the store and operating it.

        • ah

          Indeed, 15 months ago they talked about 650 restaurants in the US:


          Then they were sold to a private equity company and the expansion isn’t exactly on a pace for 650 restaurants, at least in this century (only 3 in Boston).

          • Although you may very well be right, that doesn’t explain why they announced a new opening timeframe, redid the exterior walls somewhat recently but then did nothing. Unless they determined it was a business move to keep interest in the place going.

  • I want this to open so bad.

  • I remember when that sign predicted 2010…. Stop teasing. Move on.

  • Why get excited over mediocre sushi?
    Just turn it into a comfort-one shoes and move on already!

    • Yeah, Wagamama is not really worthy of anticipation anymore (especially with this location’s constantly moving opening date). It’d be interesting to know what exactly the hold-up has been but I’ve since lost interest. In the time since they’ve threatened to open, DC has opened up more interesting spots than this chain’s expected fare.

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