Downtown restaurant Jonathan at Gratz Park will serve its final dish at the end of the month.
The announcement came as a surprise to many in the community – including restaurant owner Jonathan Lundy, who has logged close to 16 years at the location.
He says he recently visited the boutique hotel’s management, CRM, "with the intention of signing a lease and being in and out of there in five minutes, as I was led to believe... but when I got there I received a letter stating that they were not renewing the lease and I had until the end of July to leave."
Lundy, along with general manager TJ Cox, appealed the decision but were unsuccessful. Representatives from CRM did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but both Lundy and Mark Wombles, who plans to open a new restaurant in Gratz Park Inn, describe a management company in search of a change.
Wombles says he looks forward to launching the more casual-themed Distilled at Gratz Park by the end of the summer.
"We wish the best for Jonathan. The management came to us first and it was just an offer we couldn't turn down," he says.
Lundy plans to stay in Lexington, but says it’s too early to speculate on plans to open a new restaurant. For now, his attention is focused on finishing the restaurant’s stint on a high note.
WUKY has partnered with Jonathan for events in the past.