Ryan’s Grill to shut down in January
Ryan’s Grill at Ward Centre is closing after nearly 35 years.
The popular eatery and bar that opened in 1983 will close by Jan. 21, employees have told patrons.
The restaurant industry has been grappling with fierce competition and rising costs, as well as a new generation of “foodies” looking for more intimate experiences, said Honolulu retail analyst Stephany Sofos.
“Ryan’s is mom and dad’s restaurant. It’s been around 34 years. That’s a whole generation,” Sofos said. “When we all started going there in the ‘80s it was the happening place. Now the millennials are the ones driving the whole game in retail and restaurants. They’ll go to boutique restaurants.”
Meanwhile, the cost of doing business in Hawaii is escalating, she said.
“The cost to run a large restaurant is phenomenal,” Sofos said. Not only has rent gone up but also the food costs and labor. In order to make a profit you have to have a smaller place.”
Longtime customers are feeling nostalgic about the impending loss.
“For my generation, Ryan’s was one of the best places for lunch and dinner. The bar was vibrant and super crowded, a sign of its popularity. You would see everyone there, from state officials to colleagues,” said former TV news reporter Tina Shelton.
After 30 years in news, Shelton’s farewell party was held there in 2007.
Dilbert >> By Scott Adams