An Oak Cliff restaurant that became a neighborhood darling after only four years in business has closed. Jed's Grill, which opened in a small building at 1001 Jefferson Blvd. in 2015, closed on October 6.
Jonathan Kovens, who owned the restaurant with his brother Michael Kovens, says that they simply outgrew the space.
"We always had customers and we had tremendous support from the community — we're lucky that was never a problem," Kovens says. "It's really that we just outgrew that space. It's a small building, almost 100 years old, and it had limitations. We only had 15 tables, and while it was always a restaurant, the kitchen was built for a restaurant half our size. They expanded the dining room back in the '80s or '90s, but the kitchen was not expanded, and it was not built for efficiency."
Kovens says he doesn't view the closure as a negtive thing. "We want to be able to grow, and at that space at Jefferson and Polk, we've been able to get everything we could out of there," he says.
Although the brothers had experience in the restaurant industry, Jed's was the first business they owned.
"Our biggest premise was that we wanted fresh ingredients," Jonathan says. "We bought bread but we made our own ranch dressing in-house, we made everything, even our wing sauce. That was my biggest goal, to make sure I was having a true scratch kitchen. If you're going to buy Kraft ranch dressing, why not just open a restaurant in the middle of Walmart, because you're giving people something they can get anywhere else."
Kovens posted their closure on Facebook on Friday October 4 so that they could give their regulars the opportunity for one last meal; as is often the case with closures, they were deluged over the weekend.
"We are overwhelmed with the love and support from the community we have received given our recent news," the post said. "We would love to have an opportunity to say goodbye to everyone before we close this Sunday for good. Come try out our delicious menu one last time before its too late and help us celebrate the last four years!"
Kovens says they'll open something else, although he's not sure when or where.
"We definitely have plans to open another restaurant hopefully sooner than later," he says. "I would love to stay in Oak Cliff, that's where we earned our reputation and made so many wonderful relationships with the community. I met so many people. We do want a bigger restaurant and would love to have a patio. I would love to stay there, but it would have to be under the right conditions, finding the right space for the right price."
They'll keep the Jed's Grill Facebook page alive and post updates on their progress. But for now, their first priority is a good night's sleep.
"We do have some plans and ideas," Kovens says. "Before we do take any steps, we are definitely going to go on vacation. Our first week, we're going to sleep. Then a vacation. It's been a long four years. It was a tough decision. We were at that point where, do we sign a new lease? Do we apply again with TABC? It just seemed like the time to leave. But for us, it's not goodbye — it's just see ya later."