47 Comment

  • Interesting. FWIW, ever since the menu revamp it has not been the same. Just the other day we were trying to find a place to go and decided against the Heights because we no longer liked it.

    • I agree. I live near the Heights and used to eat there a fair bit, but the revamped menu just wasn’t good. Most of what I got was flavorless. That said, another burger place? Don’t we have 2 already within a block of this location?

  • this place has always been so overpriced! hoping for something more reasonable in its stead.

  • Oh, good. I have often stood on that corner, wishing I didn’t have to walk so far to get a hamburger. Sure, you can SEE both ZBurger and 5 Guys from that location, but there are one to two traffic lights between you and your sandwich.

  • Really?? a THIRD burger joint practically in the same block? Salads anyone?

  • They were one of 2014 best brunches according to Bitches Who Brunch. Oh well- I did love the French Toast Sticks!

  • Thank god Ruby Tuesday’s closed. One page of their menu was burgers.

    That literally would have been 4 burger joints within 2 blocks of each other.

    Now we’ll have 3.



    What about a Chopt? A Sweetgreen? A Shophouse (Chipotle’s asian menu concept)

    The only thing I can see happening is this would put ZBurger out of business in 6 months – which quite frankly wouldn’t be a bad thing. I don’t want to see them suffer but I’ve had Counter burgers and they are better. And 5Guys and ZBurger are nearly identical.

  • I’d be happy to see the Heights change into something else. I was never impressed with the menu (I know they changed it, but I couldn’t find any differences afterwards…) and their prices are pretty damn high. As far as the burger place, Ill probably still go to Five Guys, no matter what.

  • Good, went there once and it was mediocre and overpriced.

  • This would be a loss to the neighborhood. Sure, it isn’t the best restaurant in the neighborhood, but it’s close (to me) and generally good and reliable. And expensive? It’s no more expensive than any similar place in DC.

    • I agree – I would far prefer a sit-down neighborhood bar in that spot than a another burger place. Sure it wasn’t amazing, but it was a solid reliable neighborhood spot.

      • Agreed. We have enough fast food. No need for another counter service place. I hope that the scuttlebutt is wrong, or that it’s just the same owners and not the same model.

        • The counter is a sit-down place! It’s not fast food (at least the Reston location) – it’s primarily sit down and made to order/customizable burgers, shakes, sides, etc. I believe there is a take out option too but it’s not very quick.

          But it’s still too many burger joints within a small stretch, and we saw how that worked out for the Dupont Black and Orange…

      • Ditto!

        I honestly didn’t love the Heights, but the loss of a big, close sit down restaurant is not good news for me.

  • NO! The Heights has become a great neighborhood place for happy hour, and already has one of the best burgers – which at HH prices, is a good deal. Even though I disliked the “renovations” especially the tortuously uncomfortable chairs, the atmosphere & staff have made it feel like a real local place.

    Another burger joint is nuts.

    • Really disappointed to hear this. The Heights was a nice sit-down place with a varied menu that was easy to get to and close to where I live. Easy to meet friends there because it is on the Metro. I really hate to see it go.

  • I love The Heights! Huge loss to 14th Street – one of our last-standing sit-down good restaurants…good food, nice patio. And pretty unhappy to hear yet another fast food place may come in its place. I figured the dozen of them in a 2-block radius were plenty.

  • Maybe the owners of the Burger place are going to open a different type of restaurant. Just an idea.

  • I love counter burger. It’s a little more high end than Five Guys/Z-burger. The location in reston has a pretty good HH as well. I think it will do well here. Think &Pizza meets Five Guys w/ a bar…..

  • I don’t know how to interpret this. First off, The Heights was THE first nice, sit down restaurant in the area. Part of the same chain that owns Grill Fish, Logan Tavern, The Commissary, and the Pig. For them to pull out is a HUGE signal Columbia Heights cannot support these nicer places, at least around DCUSA, and makes similar places less likely to fill their void.

    We have already lost The Common Wealth, The GetAway (formerly Social), Aleros (much better than Tio’s, such crap!), Nori (sushi joint, now Zbuger), ThaiTanic. Along a similar vein, Ruby Tuesday and Fridays, which decided not to commit.

    Seems like those that want to spend a little more go to 11th St, while 14th St is DOOMED for fast food, Chipolte, and the like. This is a shame. Columbia Heights hasn’t become the DRAW that most have hoped for.

    Then again, The Heights, after their big revamp, was awful. Not so much the food, but those high top and bar stools, so uncomfortable, and that horrible clickity-clak noise they made when they moved. The whole decor was cheapened with that new look. It used to be warm and inviting until they had Ikea come in and redo everything.

    • My thoughts exactly as seen below.

    • The owner of these spots (one of the owners?) is also selling his mansion in Mt Vernon, so maybe he’s just divesting to purchase a bigger mansion elsewhere?

    • dcdon

      Agreed. Why is it so hard for a nice sit down restaurant to survive there? We have lost so many. I’d love to see a bigger discussion of what people would like to see in the area. Lower 14th has so many great places. Is there any hope for upper 14th?

    • Eatwell’s stock in trade is overpriced mediocre restaurants; we can only hope that they’ll close one of the ones near Logan. There are plenty of sit down restaurants over on 11th Street–ColHts will survive.

    • This stretch of 14th is basically a ghetto version of Times Square. It will never attract the kinds of quality or neighborhood places that many of us want (that’s what 11th street is for). Expect it to forever be dominated by chains.

    • frankly, all the places you list (including the Heights) we not quality places in any way. If folks are going to spend their money, they can get a much better experience on 11th or in Mt. P or in any number of neighborhoods compared to what has been offered in Col Heights. Food, service, value…it’s better everywhere else. If a quality sit-down place moves in, it should do well. My guess is, however, the rent is so high in Col Heights that only a fast-casual can generate the needed volume.

      that said, Col Heights def does not need another burger place.

      • I love Meridian Pint and all the 11th st. places, and know it sounds dumb to say I don’t want to walk “that far” but there are thousands of people who live within 1-2 blocks of the Heights who really appreciated having a close, comfortable neighborhood place. – (Well comfortable before the horrible chairs.)

        I can always go in and expect to see a couple of people I know, if only from meeting them at the Heights. It’s the closest thing we’ve got to “Cheers.” And they have a book club!

    • Well, let’s be a bit more accurate (and use correct punctuation):
      The Commonwealth- Chef divested to concentrate on original restaurant. Replaced by Acre 142.
      The Getaway (formerly Social)- Lost lease due to fucked up ownership of building (Social owners went bankrupt from mismanagement,so bank owns building. Same thing happened to the business upstairs.
      Aleros (much better than Tio’s, such crap!)- Many, much better Latino restaurants in the surrounding area. We actually have more now than 5 years ago. So, I don’t count this as a business loss.
      Nori (sushi joint, now Zbuger)- Pfff, don’t even remember this.
      ThaiTanic- Replaced by Laotian restaurant than many people actually prefer.
      I see CH as being a huge draw for restaurants/bars…. just not that horrible stretch of 14th near DCUSA. There have been many restaurant openings further north on 14th, all along 11th, and now on Georgia Av. The closing of a few lackluster restaurants says little/nothing about the area, but probably says something about increased competition.

  • That would be a big loss. That was one of the mainstays and one of the only good brunch places near the metro (not including 11th Street). Dinner could be hit or miss, had many good meals, some not as good. One of the only real sit down places and not counter service type place around there. Guess Lou’s and Acre 121 are the only real ones left. Seems like a lot of places on 14th near the Columbia Heights metro and north aren’t able to stay afloat.

  • this is shitty news. Sure the heights was mediocre but it was kid friendly and had cheap wine. So a win win for this family. ANOTHER burger joint is bad news for Columbia Heights. This stretch of 14th is so ghetto and this just sends yet another signal to the business community that only cheap unhealthy crap can make a go of it in CH. At least we still at 11th street I guess.

    • If you think it’s “ghetto,” maybe you should leave. The neighborhood would be better off without people who use that kind of language to describe their home.

      • Over the years of living in the city, I’ve grown to see “ghetto” as an offensive term, though there was a time when I probably used it offhandedly without realizing that it was. In the context it’s being used here, I think mbk is trying to say that he thinks they’re low quality businesses. I’d disagree and say that while in general, they’re not necessarily catering to high income – they’re probably right on track with the neighborhood demographics and economics. Look in Chipotle if you want to see the true cross section of Columbia Heights. More businesses like that would be great.

  • I’ve probably passed by this restaurant 500 times and never been in. It really has never interested me. Excited to see something else coming – though more burgers seems kinda dumb (unless of course it’s Shake Shack, in which case YES)

  • If this is true, it is not because the Heights was not profitable, but rather it was the least profitable of EatWell’s restaurants and was on a downward trajectory. I would bet that they got the right offer and the investors decided to take the pay out and focus on EatWell’s more upscale aspirations in the 14th St. area including the Pig. A similar thing happened to Commonwealth years back.

  • Red Panda

    Noooo! Their build-your-own bloody marys were amazing, and the bartenders always offered suggestions to make them perfect. They will be missed.

  • Bummer. I always found it to be a friendly place with good service and tasty food. Popped in for a few hours last Thursday to get some reading done. They had great happy hour specials starting at 3:00 and a handful of locals who were in the know (most of the bars in Columbia Heights and Petworth don’t open until 5:00). Had some excellent clam chowder with leeks (a bit lighter than your average chowder). Not sure if a burger joint would have that same welcoming public house vibe. I hope so.

  • I don’t really get the hate for the Heights. I liked it before the renovation, and I liked it afterwards. Nothing significant changed. It was a great neighborhood restaurant and bar near DC USA. And it was kid friendly – brought my nephews and family here for brunch on their visit – the only place I could think of that wasn’t a chain that could comfortably accommodate children.
    It always seemed full. Too bad. tough loss.

  • hispanicandproud

    Good. I find this place to be rather mediocre now. I avoid it as much as possible. Too bad we can’t get a better place rather another burger stop.

  • Hope the new place will still have a bar. And will set off the building’s fire alarm less often.

  • Based on what I see on the Counter Burger’s website, this looks like a huge win for CH. This is a sit down restaurant that serves a lot more than gourmet burger. It is a sit down restaurant that serves cocktails, beer and wine. This is the type of places that people will come to CH to eat. I think the Heights has improved recently but it doesn’t stand out from the other EatWell restaurants.

  • So, I’m torn….
    We eat brunch at Heights all the time. It’s one of only a few decent places to grab brunch in walking distance. And it’s usually crowded. This will only make Meridian Pint, the Coupe, etc. even more crowded on Sunday.
    BUT the Counter is great. It’s chain out of California. Most of the people complaining about it have clearly never been. They do have salads, people! And burgers. And it’s good. One of the places I missed from California.
    (The burgers come any way you like – add avocado, pineapple, sprouts, etc. Def. a step up from Z and 5 Guys, which I probably visit twice a year. ) And they have chicken burgers, lamb burgers, tuna burgers…..a rotating list.
    So give it a chance, at least……
    I would describe it as 5 Guys meets Ted’s Bulletin.

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