Season's Bistro closes doors

By Monroe Roark
Times Correspondent

The owner of Season’s Bistro announced late last week that the downtown McDonough restaurant is closing its doors.

A few days after a real estate listing was published online stating that the building in which the restaurant resides is for sale, Sam Pagan posted a statement on Facebook Jan. 8 confirming that the eatery would not remain open in 2016.

“As 2015 has come to an end and a new year is upon us, I have spent a great deal of time in reflection regarding the future of The Season’s Bistro. Owning my own restaurant was a lifelong dream that I was fortunate enough to bring to fruition with the support of many people including vendors, investors, friends, family, and most of all, an incredible staff,” he wrote.

“With this said, I am heavy hearted in announcing that we will be closing the restaurant. The building has been put up for sale, and we will not be reopening in 2016. There have been many signs leading me in this direction, and although I knew it was inevitably the right answer, it has been a tough decision to make. With the building going up for sale, I now know that the right time is now. I have determined that being in business for yourself is by far the hardest thing to do, and now I must move forward in another direction. I am humbled by the support of the community over the past 4 years, and I thank everyone for their business.”

Pagan’s statement resulted in more than 100 comment from well-wishers and local residents who expressed their sadness at the closing.

Seasons’ Bistro was closed for a couple of months in 2015 after a fire inside the establishment forced a partial renovation. Now the 5,000-square-foot space has been listed for sale by a local realtor, who told the Times that only the restaurant space is included in that particular listing. The space sits at the southern end of a block-long structure on Griffin Street stretching from the southwest corner of the McDonough square and containing several commercial units.

Pagan acquired the restaurant in the fall of 2012 from Lynn Loggins, the original owner who along with her husband opened Season’s Bistro in the fall of 2005.

“I felt a lot of people here were driving to Buckhead (for dining) and we wanted to provide a Buckhead experience in McDonough,” Loggins said Monday of the way Season’s Bistro was conceived a decade ago. She lives in McDonough now but is no longer in the restaurant business.

While she thinks the fine dining landscape has improved in the area, Loggins said she doesn’t see anything else operating today on that scale, and the available space would be a great opportunity for someone else to continue that trend.

“It is a premier spot for a restaurant,” she said, adding that over the past ten years it developed into something of a landmark.

“Even today, people tell me it’s the ‘Cheers’ of McDonough, as a meeting place or just a place to go,” she said, referring to the Boston bar immortalized in the 1980s TV sitcom. “Many people over the years have referred to it that way and still do.”