Business

Bluffton restaurant closes for good 17 months after opening. Here’s why

Bluffton’s Andes Rotisserie and its history with Hurricane Matthew is coming to an end

Andes Rotisserie in Bluffton is closing. The owner gave us an exclusive first look at the interior of the restaurant and its connection to a hurricane that ravaged the Lowcountry.
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Andes Rotisserie in Bluffton is closing. The owner gave us an exclusive first look at the interior of the restaurant and its connection to a hurricane that ravaged the Lowcountry.

Bluffton restaurant Andes Rotisserie has shut its doors for good this week, according to owner Andy Fishkind.

“Well, we did it! We opened a beautiful restaurant serving delicious food at moderate prices. However, reality is that using high quality fresh ingredients and paying fair wages to those who prepare and serve them isn’t sustainable, given our goal of reasonable pricing,” Fishkind posted on the restaurant’s Facebook page and website.

The restaurant closed Tuesday and is “available for a new group to come in,” Fishkind said.

“We just had a vision and a passion to open a restaurant with specific goals, and that was to serve the best food that we could ... and not cut any corners and do all that at a reasonable rate,” he said. “The long and short of it is the costs to do it were just too high.”

Andes Rotisserie opened in November 2017 at 7 Johnson Way in the Old Town Bluffton area. It served lunch and dinner, with a menu specializing in roasted meats, and offered group cooking classes.

The restaurant’s original proposed name — Frickin Chicken — caused a bit of controversy among town officials before Fishkind decided to change it.

Fishkind said on Thursday that he wanted to thank his customers and the new friends he made through the restaurant.

“You get gratification from serving good food to customers and hearing back that they enjoyed it,” he said. “On the other side, you can’t afford to buy them dinner.”

The restaurant employed about a dozen people between the kitchen staff and servers.

Fishkind said, moving forward, he will put more energy into his other business, May River Contracting.

“I remain very upbeat about the whole situation,” he said. “I did it exactly the way I wanted to do it. I’m not interested in making concessions.”

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Lisa Wilson is a breaking news reporter for The Island Packet and The Beaufort Gazette. The 25-year newsroom veteran has worked for papers in Louisiana and Mississippi and is happy to call the Lowcountry home.


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