This afternoon, Robert Stehling, the James Beard award winning chef and owner of beloved breakfast spot Hominy Grill told the Post and Courier that after almost 24 years in business he would be closing the restaurant on April 28.
"Things have a beginning, a middle and an end," Stehling told P&C's Hanna Raskin. "I felt like at this point in my life, I would like to be open to new experiences."
View this post on Instagram
When we first opened Hominy Grill in 1996, our goals were simple – we wanted to explore the traditions and history of the low country through our food. And we wanted to create a neighborhood restaurant with a sense of place. Nearly 24 years later, we are astonished by all that’s happened. We’ve achieved things we never imagined – winning the 2008 James Beard Award for Best Chef Southeast was a major honor. Getting to know so many regular customers over the past 23 years has also been hugely rewarding. We’re profoundly grateful for our now very extended family of loyal and beloved customers. And equally thankful to our dedicated and caring staff. You are all part of this restaurant. It is hard to say goodbye to all of this. However, after careful deliberation, we’ve decided that we’re ready for the next chapter. Our final day of service will be on Sunday, April 28. We are deeply grateful to our many supporters in the Charleston community and beyond. It has been a joy and a privilege to have met and fed so many of you along the way.
A little after 5 p.m. today, the restaurant posted the closing announcement on Instagram: "When we first opened Hominy Grill in 1996, our goals were simple — we wanted to explore the traditions and history of the low country through our food. And we wanted to create a neighborhood restaurant with a sense of place."
Related With endless restaurant possibilities, Charleston always comes back for breakfast: Rise and Shine
While the closing is abrupt, there may have been some signs after all. In October 2017 Stehling announced that after 21 years, Hominy would no longer be serving dinner.
"These changes will allow us to consolidate resources and redirect our focus going forward. It will also allow us to respond to the significant demand for private events," Stehling said at the time.
Update 4/9: Reached on Tuesday, Stehling told us, "I'm trying to take a breath and see what I feel like doing." As far as the staff, "we're trying to help them as much as we can that's why we gave such a long closing period surprise. A lot of them have been here a long time we’ve lived a lot together we wanted to give everyone time to land in good places."
When we chatted with Stehling this summer about the appeal of all breakfast all the time, he said "The costs are so much better. Putting a $15 [breakfast] plate together is more fun, and easier. We turn every seat every hour all day long, so before 3 o'clock we've seen 600 people. Breakfast involves less labor ... the last few years we've been so hamstrung by the labor situation, breakfast just made it easier."
Not easy enough. Go get your Charleston Nasty fix in the next couple of weeks, y'all.