2 New Restaurants Will Replace Pusser's When It Closes In Annapolis


Atlas Restaurant Group announced Wednesday that it will replace Pusser's Caribbean Grille with two new restaurants in the Annapolis Waterfront Hotel. Pusser’s is pictured above in 2021. (Jacob Baumgart/Patch)

ANNAPOLIS, MD - Two new waterfront restaurants will replace Pusser's Caribbean Grille after it closes in downtown Annapolis in November 2024, a press release announced Wednesday.

The unnamed eateries will both be owned by Atlas Restaurant Group, which manages 34 properties across the country. Atlas also owns The Choptank, an upscale eatery a few doors up from Pusser's.

Atlas plans to spend millions to split Pusser's into separate establishments, both of which will overlook City Dock and Ego Alley. Downstairs will feature a dock bar. An enclosed rooftop bar will lie upstairs. There will also be a banquet and events space. All will have different price points.

Atlas expects to open these locations by 2025. All will be connected to the Annapolis Waterfront Hotel, which is the property's landlord along with Hersha Hotels and Resorts.

Atlas said Pusser's employees can stay aboard and work at the new operations. Atlas expects to employ nearly 400 people across its three Annapolis locations.

"Through this deal, we will transform the hotel into a culinary destination that will not only delight locals, but also attract visitors from near and far," Atlas Founder and CEO Alex Smith said in the press release. "With The Choptank restaurant, the addition of the hotel’s two new restaurant concepts, and a best-in-class banquet and events space, Atlas will now operate three waterfront restaurant concepts with unique food and beverage offerings at three different price points, creating a regional waterfront dining and entertainment district for the city of Annapolis."

Early sketches of the new eateries are posted here.

Related: Pusser's Closing Annapolis Restaurant Next Year, Report Says

Pusser's on Tuesday announced its upcoming closure. Pusser's hopes to eventually reopen in an undetermined location nearby, its press release said.

The bar and grille is located at 80 Compromise Street inside the Annapolis Waterfront Hotel. The release said Pusser's leased its space from the hotel for 30 years and the contract is expiring.

The Annapolis Waterfront Hotel is not renewing that lease, the release said.

"While we are very disappointed by the outcome of our lease negotiations, we certainly look forward to celebrating next year, our last year and our 30th Anniversary, with the Annapolis community," Pusser's Co-Owner Chris Townsend said in the release.

Pusser's opened its waterfront restaurant at City Dock in 1994. It's known for its seafood and rum drinks, including the Painkiller.

Townsend thanked his employees for their service. The crew has hosted more than 1,000 weddings and events.

"The longevity of Executive Chef, Jim Eriksen, Senior Catering Sales Manager, Hilary Peret, and Accounting/Personnel Manager, Dottie Cover, averaging over 28 years at Pusser’s, is indicative of the family atmosphere created over the years," Townsend said in the release. "More than a Painkiller and ‘must see’ experience for locals and tourists alike, Pusser’s has been a home base for so many."

The release said Pusser's has held charitable fundraisers, worked with the U.S. Naval Academy and supported the boating community. Situated along Ego Alley, Pusser's is always an entertainment hub during the Annapolis Boat Shows.

"Pusser’s will forever be a long-time part of the unique fabric of Annapolis, and going forward we hope to develop other possible locations in the area," Townsend said in the release. "But, with upwards of 70 events on the books for 2024, we still have a lot of work to do. We want to make sure our 30th year will be a lot of fun and truly a year to remember."

Pusser's will still host all the events it already has scheduled until November 2024. It's also accepting new events happening before that date.

Anybody with questions can contact Chris Townsend, Sarah Lubawski or Minna Pauly at PussersAnnapolis2024@gmail.com.

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