June 15th, 2011
08:00 PM ET
No one ever said that operating a restaurant was easy. Tell that to Jamawn Woods.
Eater.com reports that two of the three "Soul Daddy" restaurants Woods won after finishing first on NBC's short-lived competition series "America's Next Great Restaurant" closed for good this week, just a month after opening.
The Soul Daddy restaurants in New York and Los Angeles are affected by the closure. The third eatery, located inside the Mall of America in Minnesota, remains open.
In a statement, the company that runs Soul Daddy wrote:
"The realities of running a restaurant are very difficult, more so with multiple locations in multiple cities. After a careful review of the business model and the performance of the restaurants, we have decided that our best opportunity for Soul Daddy's success is to focus our efforts on establishing a solid footing in one location, building the brand, and developing the operations from there.
"While it has certainly been a difficult decision, we believe this is the best approach as we work toward ongoing success for Soul Daddy."
On its website, Soul Daddy says it prides itself on serving a "healthier, lighter take on traditional soul food."
For winning "America's Next Great Restaurant," which ended its only season last month, Woods won a three-restaurant chain financially backed by the show's four judges – Chipotle founder Steve Ells and celebrity chefs Bobby Flay, Lorena Garcia and Curtis Stone. Neither Woods nor the investors have commented on the closures.
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