Last spring, Doug Lufkin took over the Savannah Bar & Grille, which for 20 or so years was the best and only place to go in Westlake to enjoy big-time live music. But at the newly christened Rock West Grub Pub (30676 Detroit Rd.), Lufkin had planned to 86 most of the live acts and focus on the grub.
"The Savannah lasted many years longer than it probably should have," Lufkin told me at the time. "The business model of the place no longer works. We all love live bands, but they are so expensive."
Rock West closed last month, apparently because the music never died.
"It just wasn't ready for it, I guess," Lufkin says with the benefit of hindsight. "It's been a live entertainment destination for so long we had a real hard time changing that."
Lufkin says when you add up the $10,000 a month in rent, and another $8,000 or $9,000 into live entertainment per month, "We just couldn't keep up with the over head. It's a difficult thing to maintain."
"We're sad about the closing — it's heartbreaking," he adds. "I've been in this business many, many years and have seen places open and close. You try and do something that you think will work, and maybe it's not the right time, right place for it."
Word on the street is the original owner will step back in and reopen the space as, wait for it, Savannah Bar & Grille.