Natchez owner and executive chef Alexis Jones has announced that, due to low sales, the restaurant will be nixing its lunch and weekday dinner service.
The restaurant, which is located in the Tower Building at 323 Center Street in Little Rock, will still be open for Friday and Saturday dinner, and for Sunday brunch. The last day for lunch service was last Friday, May 22.
In a May 19 note on Facebook, Jones thanked customers, staff, family, friends and Little Rock, saying that she has no regrets or second-guesses about opening the restaurant, which has been in operation since November 2012. She said weekend diners “can still expect to see our signatures” including braised meats, hand rolled pastas, fresh seafood, and local produce.
The Eat Arkansas blog ran a profile of Jones soon after Natchez opened, with Daniel Walker characterizing the restaurant’s fare as “ever-evolving menu of classically prepared, southern-inspired dishes with contemporary French and Mediterranean influences.” The Arkansas Times’ initial review of Natchez was generally not that positive, but things were looking up by the time Eat Arkansas critic Michael Roberts visited in 2013, and our review from April of this year was positively glowing. .
“This experience,” Jones wrote in her May 19 Facebook post, “has been deeply gratifying and I have appreciated the support and kind words of our loyal patrons and all who have graced our tables. I have been very proud of the standard we have set and served, and though it is difficult to write, our sales are good but not enough to service our lease or afford our quality for local, fresh, and sustainable products… I would much rather lose the services than compromise our quality. Restaurants must succeed, not be floated. Please support and celebrate with us in our limited opening and as always please support local businesses.”
In closing, Jones said she didn’t want to elaborate on the future of the restaurant, but noted their lease has come to an end. Though they have considered relocating, she said “that takes a lot.” “This might be a step towards the end or a closed chapter,” she said. “If it is, we will pursue other endeavors, new ventures, devote more time to making a good life and not just a living. But once again, I sincerely appreciate the overwhelming support.”