Long-time Burlington restaurant closing its doors


Published April 5, 2023 at 5:46 pm

Long-time Brant St. restaurant is closing

The sign on the front door of the Brant St. restaurant can’t be any clearer. It’s closing.

And the reason behind the closure is one that plagues family-owned businesses.

Operators of Saigon on Brant say they are closing down on April 18 because the rent has gone up.

“We just can’t afford it anymore,” one of the operators explained. “The rent has become too high.”

The sign posted on the door of the Vietnamese restaurant goes into more detail.

“From April 18 onward this restaurant shall be permanently closing its doors,” the hand-written notice reads. “This is due to an increased rental rate that we cannot afford; therefore, we can no longer remain open to serve our community. We are deeply sorry and thank you for granting us 16 years of business.”

The landlord could not be reached for comment.

Saigon on Brant has gathered a loyal following over the years and since the notice of its impending closure fans have been lamenting its loss and what it means to mom-and-pop shops everywhere.

“This really stinks,” said Vicki Rio via Facebook. “I’ve been going there for years. It’s a shame so many of these family businesses are disappearing to be replaced by chain drugstores and fast-food restaurants. It really rips the heart out of a community when these soulless shops and condos displace a family business.”

It’s not known what will be replacing the Saigon On Brant at 474 Brant St. but others on social media have pointed out the number of condo projects that are slated for the area. There are no development projects on record for the site.

“This is a huge blow not just to me, but to the downtown,” a commentator on Reddit posted. “Saigon has been one of my family’s staple restaurants to dine at over the last 15 years and the owners have always been super friendly and made such delicious food.”

The restaurant’s website says it serves authentic Vietnamese fare (with a focus on noodle soups).

“It is a comfortable, beautifully decorated restaurant that is popular with locals and visitors-to-Burlington alike,” reads a description on the Burlington Downtown Business Association website. “Weekdays are busy with the office-lunch crowd slurping away and chatting over their large steaming lunch bowls. This is a getwaway from the every day, to be sure, and the tantalizing menu is packed full of familiar entrees as well as many food-combination adventures sure to please the choosiest eater. This food is fresh, hot, low in fat, very nutritious, made to order.”

The restaurant operator who spoke to inhalton.com said the family will consider opening somewhere else, but added rent may now be out of their reach no matter where they look.

“We will have to see,” she said. “Right now we are closing. I don’t know what comes next.”

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