After 13 years across the street from the Space Needle, chef John Howie’s upscale pub, Sport Restaurant and Bar, is closing Saturday, October 27. The bar’s dozens of TVs, copious sports memorabilia, and extensive menu have typically landed it on Eater Seattle’s map of where to watch sports around town, and Howie said the place remained popular.
But he also said the increasing cost of doing business has made things particularly challenging for a restaurant of this size (fairly large) and price point (burgers and sandwiches cost around $17, a pound of wings costs $14.50). He didn’t further elaborate on what factors led to Sport’s closure, or if he had taken specific steps to combat these rising costs, as he did recently at John Howie Steak, swapping a three-percent surcharge for higher menu prices.
After Sport’s shutter, John Howie will be strictly an Eastside restaurateur again. His remaining properties are in Bellevue (Seastar, John Howie Steak) and Bothell (Beardslee Public House, Wildwood Spirits Co.). High-end seafood restaurant Seastar, which notably bucked the Seattle-to-Bellevue trend of restaurant expansions when it expanded from the Eastside to Seattle in 2009, closed its Seattle location in 2015.
Howie also said he and his team are trying to help place Sport employees at his other restaurants or with other Seattle-area restaurants.
Correction: October 1, 2018, 10:05 p.m.
This article was updated to reflect that Seastar’s Seattle location closed in 2015, not 2014.