Restaurant News & Reviews

Third locally owned Lexington restaurant closing in a month

Chatham’s Bistro and Bar is closing after Sunday. The restaurant opened in 2014; owners Rob and Lee Milward and their investors decided to close the restaurant to pursue other opportunities.
Chatham’s Bistro and Bar is closing after Sunday. The restaurant opened in 2014; owners Rob and Lee Milward and their investors decided to close the restaurant to pursue other opportunities. File photo

Chatham’s Bistro & Bar is closing after Sunday. The restaurant opened in 2014 High Street and Woodland Avenue, in a building occupied for years by Ramsey’s.

Chatham’s co-owners Rob and Lee Milward, along with their investors, have decided to close after three years to pursue other business interests.

It’s the third locally owned restaurant in less than a month to announce that it is shutting down, following The Julep Cup and Enoteca.

Chatham’s struggled initially and went through several menus. Last month, general manager Larry Dean announced that a new chef, Mohammed “Mo” Mouktafi, had been hired to shift the menu toward French casual.

Ultimately, however, the owners decided the time had come to let the enterprise go, Lee Milward said.

“We are so grateful to have had such wonderful employees,” she said. “It’s time for us to move on, and pursue out other interests.”

Lee Milward runs a jewelry-making business; Rob Milward owns his family’s funeral home.

The closing comes as competition has increased over the summer for local restaurants with the opening of about two dozen new places to dine at The Summit at Fritz Farm, along with new places in the Distillery District.

“Lexington can’t sustain this many restaurants,” Lee Milward said. “It’s a tough business, and it makes it even tougher when you have so many other good restaurants in town and so many new ones opening up.”

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