Thursday, August 16, 2012

Arthur's Uptown closing

Arthur's Uptown at One Wells Fargo -- 301 S. College St. -- will close after lunch Aug. 17. There's been an Arthur's at that location since the building opened, in 1988, says Arthur's John Balsley, and there's been at Arthur's in uptown for more than 40 years. It was originally in the Ivey's building.

UPDATE: Balsley confirms it was a volume-based decision: "We leased 4600 square feet of prime Uptown retail space," he wrote me in an e-mail. "To make the business model work with only one meal per day and weekdays only, our volume was no longer sufficient to support the rent structure. We have had an incredible run Uptown and are grateful for many loyal customers and wonderful memories of serving them. We plan to operate in Belk at SouthPark for many years to come."

That's the Arthur's in Belk at SouthPark, which will continue to operate as both restaurant and wine shop; Balsley notes it's been in Belk since '91, and at SouthPark since '74 (formerly, again, in Ivey's).

Have a favorite memory of Arthur's as an uptown place? Feel free to share. Old-timers may remember the Observer's Lew Powell rooting up who Arthur was: Arthur Pressman, who had a wine and gourmet shop on West Fifth Street in the old Clayton Hotel. "I decided to retire, and two young fellows bought my inventory," Pressman told Powell. "They asked if they could use my name and I said of course ... I feel good the boys are doing good." That was in 1984; Pressman was 77. The young fellows were brothers John and Robert Balsley, who added sandwiches, moved Arthur's into Ivey's and had expanded to five locations by the mid-80s.

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

Check with Arthur's. I had lunch at Arthur's on Fifth Street, across from the original Ivey's location prior to 1974. The place was unique - we sat on wine crates. Not very big, but with lots of atmosphere!!!

KB said...

Arthur Pressman - a fine man - one of my best memories of that era. Was fortunate to know him from there and Temple Israel (original location).
Karen in central Florida

Anonymous said...

What will I do without my Arthur's grilled chicken salad once a week. I'm sure going to miss the people who work there.

Anonymous said...

End of an era. I remember Arthur's in the basement of Iveys . . . checkered tablecloths, cool music, great food. I remember Free Green Beer on St. Patrick's Day! Many pleasant memories of Arthur's over the years. For the past 5 years or so - nearly daily diet of their delicious soups. They will be missed!!!

Anonymous said...

Was surprised to see that the Uptown location was closing. Loved my grilled chicken ceasar salad with crutons. Going to miss Arthur's being Uptown.

J said...

Surprised to see this. I didn't go there often, but did enjoy when I did go. I started working uptown in '93, and I think Arthur's and Chick-Fil-A are the only food places that are in the same spot as when I started. Did the owners give any reason for shutting down?

Anonymous said...

Helen,

How about telling us why Arthur's is closing instead of asking for memories of Mr. Arthur or whatever? You left a pretty key piece of information out of this article that anyone clicking on it is going to want to know. Thanks.

Helen Schwab said...

Of course, Anon: Hoping to hear back on the why, but wanted to go ahead and let people know about the closing as soon as possible, particularly with this timing. People often want to pay respects before a place closes.

Anonymous said...

Oh, no! That's tomorrow!

Why such short notice?

Anonymous said...

Arthur's Asian Chicken Salad is one of of the best salads in Charlotte. Will miss enjoying that when I am working in that building.

Anonymous said...

Yes I remember the original Arthur's across from Iveys I think it was in the lobby of a hotel? In the 60's it was a great place for a 16 year old to buy Mateus for a date 8o) Wish I still had some of those cool bottles!

Anonymous said...

I find it very disturbing that Arthur's is closing, and so suddenly too! I'm going to miss their grilled chicken salad (with real chicken, not processed) and homemade Ranch dressing. You won't find better anywhere else!

Anonymous said...

Well, that just really stinks! I've been working down here since 1990 and loved getting lunch and sometimes breakfast there!
Their croutons for salads were awesome! Chicken cheese steak...mmmm and fries with ranch on the side!!! Oh my!
Going to miss the people who work there too!

Anonymous said...

Best chicken salad grinder I ever had

Anonymous said...

Please don't forget the South Park location is still open!!!

Anonymous said...

Arthur didn't build that.

Anonymous said...

I'm still upset that the Market on 7th St. closed a few years ago. Seems like uptown lacks any sense of Charlotte history. Open for 10 yrs, shut it down, open something else there.

Rich said...

I second the "Best chicken salad grinder" sentiment. It's actually made with chunks of turkey, but it sure is de-licious! Think I'll drive over to SouthPark and get one as a tribute.

Anonymous said...

They are closing because no one wants to spend $5 for a salad that has lettuce (green leaf and half a tomato). There are way too many options for the urban uptown lunch goers. True...they do have some of the best non processed menu items but there isn't enough business to keep them in the center city. Make sure you visit them when you go to SouthPark!!

Abe Simpson said...

I remember going to Arthurs every time we came to Charlotte Town. Like the time I caught the bus from Shelbyville. I needed a new heel for my shoe, so, I left Morganville, which is what they called Shelbyville in those days. So I tied an onion to my belt, which was the style at the time. Now, to take the bus cost a nickel, and in those days, nickels had pictures of bumblebees on 'em. "Give me five bees for a quarter," you'd say.

Now where were we? Oh yeah: the important thing was I had an onion on my belt, which was the style at the time. They didn't have white onions because of the war. The only thing you could get was those big yellow ones...

Anonymous said...

Closed for dinner and weekends.... couldn't last with that model.

Anonymous said...

I worked at Arthurs at Southpark and Eastland mall while in college in the 70's. Still know th recipe for the chicken salad and use it. Thanks John!!!

Anonymous said...

Out with the old! That would be a great spot for Chipotle!

Anonymous said...

Perhaps the decrease in customer volume was due to the terrible, and sometimes extremely volatile, customer service. Hopefully the folks who run the Belk/South Park location will take note, as the customer service there just as poor.