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Original Roadhouse Grill Closes

The Western themed eatery shut its doors last week.

The at Town Center in Santee permanently closed for business on August 14.

This sign is posted on their window:

"...The decision to close was not an easy one to make, nor is it at all reflective of the quality of our management team or employees. Like any business, Original Roadhouse Grill must evaluate the performance and potential of its business assets and at times, close certain restaurants. The economic conditions of the past two years have resulted in a level of negative sales and negative profits which prohibit us from continuing to operate this particular location.

We deeply appreciate your patronage over the years and invite you to visit us at any of our California or Oregon locations."

Rumors of Phil's BBQ taking over that site have yet to be substantiated, and there are no signs of construction inside or outside the building.

Jeni Reynolds August 23, 2011 at 05:38 PM
Wow, seems like there is business closing every week. This will be a huge vacancy to fill in the shopping center.
Earlene August 23, 2011 at 06:48 PM
We never ate at the Original Roadhouse Grill as it was felt the building itself was NOT condusive to a nice eating establishment......it just wasn't appealing, wrong design for a restaurant!
Don August 23, 2011 at 09:48 PM
Loved it! Sorry it is gone! See you again when the economy picks up after the next election
vicky August 24, 2011 at 02:01 AM
Wow!!!!!!! another business gone. How sad!!!!!!!
Joe Spencer August 24, 2011 at 02:29 AM
There were two problems aside from general economy that helped sink this place. One was that the service was below par here. I heard that from many people who visited the location. The other problem is that because these locations are so spread out there wasn't another one close to Santee....which means probably very little supervision by the corporate team. Hard to imagine the top brass checking in too often when they arent nearby. That would be directly tied into the poor service. I don't think the decor had anything to do with the problem, they werent trying to be Mr. A's. They called it a "roadhouse grill" and the decor matched that.
Earlene August 24, 2011 at 03:02 AM
Deja vu Burt Reynolds' "Po Folks," the southern restaurant chain which went belly up in Santee. It's management was run by teenagers (not a wise decision). That space is now occupied by an auto parts store.
Kathy August 25, 2011 at 06:05 AM
Roadhouse had great food and service for the first year and then it just kept going downhill from there. The last time I was in there was over 3 years ago, horrible service and the food was disgusting. Sorry to see another business close in Santee but hope the space gets filled soon, with some great food and service.
Rick August 25, 2011 at 02:40 PM
Would love to see Phils BBQ or a Me N Eds Pizza in that location
shirley August 25, 2011 at 03:05 PM
I agree, the service and food went downhill. We gave it several tries over the past few years. Late July we went in and were pleasantly surprised both had seemed to turn around although the restaurant itself was quite empty.
Earlene August 25, 2011 at 03:34 PM
This would be agreat spot for Phil's BBQ!
Kevin Hippensteel August 25, 2011 at 05:22 PM
I remember Po Folks. I think I remember there being horse shoes in the back.
Kevin Hippensteel August 25, 2011 at 05:24 PM
it might not be big enough for a Phil's but that would be great. A Red Robin would be good too.
Kris diver August 26, 2011 at 04:06 AM
We never received anything but great service and great food. We are very sad to see it close..
Bryceson Cabading August 26, 2011 at 07:50 AM
I never went, but when I was little my dad used to joke that the food they served was actual roadkill collected from the streets....being the tike I was I believed it ;)
Ellen McGuire August 28, 2011 at 08:50 AM
I'm really suprised it lasted as long as it did! The food was so-so & the last few times we were there the service was lacking! I was particularly "grossed out" when one of the employees told me they only swept up the peanut shells once a week! I would love to see this become a Texas Roadhouse...about the only similarity is the peanuts,that get swept up daily & through out the day if there are too many. Great steaks & burgers,ect. & the fluffiest baked potatoes you've ever had...yummy rolls,too!There is one in Yuma & several others in AZ plus other states. Prices are more reasonable than Original Roadhouse,too! Another good choice would be Famous Daves...great BBQ & no need to drive up to Vista! Both of these places could fit into this building with only the need to "freshen up" the interior & put their own touches on the place. They also,both do alot for the community..."tip a cop/firefighter...Military Appreciation...Famous Daves even does a "Daves eat free event once a year! If Phil's is only a rumor & not a "done deal",I think it would be worthwhile for the city to check into these two restaurants. It would be the first location in San Diego County for Texas Roadhouse & the only Famous Daves other than Vista in the area. We know how well restaurants do when Santee is the first in the area,think Sonic & Hometown Buffet (when it first opened). While we are at it,not for this building,but how about a Five Guys & a CiCi's pizza...two BIG money makers!
Rachele August 28, 2011 at 05:05 PM
We ate there a couple of times. The Roadhouse in Temecula was great but the one here was so-so and the service was terrible! I think after the 2nd or 3rd try we gave up. I wouldn't be surprised if Joe's BBQ is next. They were great when they first opened (no Phil's BBQ but still good) but the last time we went it blew. At least 5 out of our party ended up with stomach issues. We will never go back.
santeeneighbor September 07, 2011 at 11:48 PM
It would be great to have a major restaurant go in there like Red Robin!
Earlene September 08, 2011 at 01:05 AM
I wholeheartedly agree, Mrs. O; we have no major restaurants like those in Mission Valley.
Ellen McGuire September 08, 2011 at 08:34 PM
I agree with Mrs.O & Earlene,wholehartedly! We do need some of the "biggies". Don't get me wrong...we have some great "locals" like Landre's,Domo Sushi,Murietta's. We also have some of the big chains like Olive Garden & Mimi's,but there are other things that I'd like to have close by. I still think that Texas Roadhouse or Famous Dave's would be great for the old Original Roadhouse.They wouldn't need to do a lot of remodeling & please trust me they both have great food & I'm sure would be popular. As far as other places go...Red Robin would be good,although I do think their prices are a little high for a burger. People always say we need a Souplantation & I agree...I'm tired of the long lines in La Mesa,plus I've been to newer locations in AZ & they are able to offer additional items. People ask about a CiCi's Pizza & I've never been to one but I know people who have & yes it's not gourmet...but it is a good option to feed a crowd for not alot of money. Five Guys on the other hand...been there...love that! On second thought...having one close by could be deadly! ;) Of course, let's not forget Buffalo Wild Wings,Chick-fil-A & In-n-Out...they are all supposed to be on their way,so let's get them done!! One last thought...while we are forming the ultimate wish list,two words...Cracker Barrel!

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