Chief Ike's Mambo Room, a 25-year stalwart of Adams Morgan, will close after March 28. "What a great run we’ve had! We would like to thank the residence [sic] of Adam’s Morgan [sic] and the DC Metro area, and those across the country who have supported Chief Ike’s throughout the years," the restaurant posted on its Facebook wall.
Manager and Bar Concepts Inc. consultant Alan Beal was brought in to Chief Ike's in July to help keep the struggling bar afloat. Bar Concepts, which lists "rescues" among its services, helped the bar hire new staff, including a new chef, and do extra marketing and promotions. It sort of helped: The bar has seen an 40 percent increase in weekend sales since January, Beal says. But it apparently wasn't enough. "It's just not sustaining during the week," he says. He blames the competition from elsewhere in the city: "There's a lot of other areas developing around D.C., and it just kind of sucked up patrons, so it's been tough."
Bar Concepts tried to help sell the business but wasn't able to find a buyer. "Sometimes you've got to advise your client what's the best route for them," Beal says. At the same time, Beal says owner Al Jirikowic is looking to get out of the business, and Chief Ike's has "run its course."
Beal says they're currently working to help staff get jobs elsewhere. Patrons can say goodbye with a flurry of events this week. Via a press release:
Monday: Movie Night 6pm showing Die Hard & Die Hard with a Vengeance
Tuesday: Crazy Nasty Trivia hosted by Chandler Nasty & Chaos McBane-8:00pm BIG prizes for the last trivia night at Chief Ike’s!
Wednesday: Rock Your Wednesday playing rock hits of all decades and great food and drink specials.
Thursday: Open M’Ike Comedy Night featuring $1 Absolute Flavors and DC’s BEST Comedians
Friday: Farewell Party Part 1 with DJ MIlktruck featuring $1 cocktails all night long
Saturday: Battle of the Bands (downstairs until 11pm, upstairs until 2:30am) AND Farewell Party Part 2: THE FINAL DANCE with DJ Milktruck starting at 11pm downstairs until 3am. $1 Cocktails from 11-Close
Photo via Chief Ike's