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Barriques on Atwood Avenue to close, never bounced back from pandemic
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RESTAURANT NEWS | CLOSING

Barriques on Atwood Avenue to close, never bounced back from pandemic

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Barriques

Barriques on Atwood Avenue is closing before the end of the year.

The Barriques coffee shop on Atwood Avenue is closing after a six-year run.

Matt Weygandt, who owns the Atwood shop and six other area Barriques Coffee Roasters and Cafes with partner Finn Berge, said that location hasn’t bounced back from the pandemic “for whatever set of reasons.”

He and Berge needed to sign a renewal on the lease “and it’s a location that has nowhere near come back and recovered the way the rest of our places have,” he said. “And we just didn’t feel comfortable signing up for a long-term obligation when we were uncertain how much of our pre-pandemic business we were going to be able to get back.”

Weygandt said that like a number of their leases, it came up during the pandemic. In most cases, he said, they were able to push the leases out “six months at a time or so to get some more clarity as to where the thing was going.”

The shop at 2166 Atwood Ave., was one of those leases, he said, adding that the renewal would have been for five years.

They haven’t announced a closure date, but it will close before the end of the year, he said.

“Right out of the gate, it was a good location for us,” Weygandt said. “We went through a few ups and downs, but we were happy with the space. It takes a long time for our places to really get to where we want them to be, but it was on track to do that.”

Weygandt and Berge closed their Park Street location last year. “It feels awful to close a place, because we were intimately involved with these things,” Weygandt said.

“I mean, we do the construction. They’re fairly personal, so it is a bummer to have to kind of go backwards, but that’s also part of business,” he said. “You might close a few and you open a few others. You’re not going to always bat a thousand.”

The pandemic added a layer of uncertainty and complication, but as a whole, Barriques is in good shape, he said.

“I feel very fortunate in comparison to what I hear from some of my other fellow restauranteurs. I consider us very lucky that we came out mostly unscathed.”

He and Berge, who together opened Barriques as a wine store in 1998, are looking for a new location to open in 2023, but it’s not a priority now, he said.

“We need to make sure that we’ve turned more of a pandemic corner in general,” Weygandt said, “and we would like to make sure that we have a little clearer picture on the staffing front.”

Read more restaurant news at go.madison.com/restaurants.

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