Even a visit from Gordon Ramsay apparently wasn’t enough to save Lowery’s Seafood Restaurant.
The longtime river country staple at 528 N. Church Lane filed for bankruptcy on Aug. 20.
The restaurant, which has been in business more than 80 years, initially sought Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection before requesting this week that the case be converted to a Chapter 7 liquidation.
The filing comes nearly two years after members of its namesake family, including William Wesley Lowery III and Robert Lowery, put the restaurant up for sale so they could retire. They had an asking price of $1.6 million, and included sister spot Captain’s Grill & Patio with which Lowery’s shares a roof. After a sale never materialized, Williams’ son, William Lowery IV, took over operations.
Earlier this year the restaurant appeared on Gordon Ramsay’s show “24 Hours to Hell and Back,” in which the celebrity chef attempts to save troubled restaurants within a day. Ramsay’s show remodeled the restaurant and updated its menu, but the economic turmoil wrought by COVID-19 took its toll.
The restaurant closed in early March due to the pandemic and has remained shuttered since. Calls to Lowery’s on Thursday went unanswered.
Lowery’s initial Chapter 11 claims the business has up to $50,000 in assets and between $1 million and $10 million in liabilities owed to fewer than 50 creditors.
Among its largest debts, Lowery’s owes $143,000 to Performance Food Group and $204,000 to Atlantic Union Bank. It also owes $187,000 Virginia’s Department of Taxation and $100,000 to the Town of Tappahannock.
Lowery’s is represented in the bankruptcy by Mark Dahlberg of Fredericksburg law firm Woehrle Dahlberg Yao. Dahlberg could not be reached for comment by press time.