Looks like you’ll have to go a bit further for your steak and seafood fix, Bunker Hillians. McCormick & Schmick’s, the nationwide upscale casual chain, is no longer grilling bone-in filets or stacking fresh seafood into a tube shape downtown.
Long a bastion for the post-work and power dinner set, Schmick’s used to have no problem drawing in the necessary crowds to their large, prime location inside of the U.S. Bank Tower. But times change, and with it so does the neighborhood. Pez Cantina is right around the corner now, and plenty of other newer, hipper concepts aren’t far away either. You know times are tough for chains when not even the Maria’s Italian Kitchen down the street can stay alive.
Perhaps the shutter has something to do with the overall renovation plans for the tall tower. With $50 million in the budget to revamp the interior, and to likely land a prime restaurant at the 71st floor, it’s likely that the Schmick’s folks saw the writing on the wall and got out of dodge. Still, that space won’t stay empty forever — even as tastes change and chains fall by the wayside downtown, there’s still too much foot traffic to be denied.