Update: The Chesapeake restaurant is scheduled to reopen in a few weeks, according to owner Ernst Valery. On Wednesday a sign was posted saying the restaurant was temporarily closed but that it was still booking private events.
Valery said the temporary closing is to facilitate ongoing construction to the building's second floor, which will be used for apartments, offices and a banquet hall. The construction, particularly the installation of new plumbing, was having an impact on the back area of the first floor, he said
When the Chesapeake does reopen, it will be operated by a restaurant-management company.
Valery said that the break in construction is giving the management company, which he declined to identify, a chance to get its bearings.
The Chesapeake opened last June on the corner of Charles and Lafayette Streets in the same space where a Baltimore dining institution, the Chesapeake Restaurant, flourished in the 1950s and 1960s. The restaurant is owned by Ernst Valery and his wife Dana Valery, who also own Milk & Honey Market in Mount Vernon.
The new management company, he said, has its roots in Baltimore and will help create a more local focus for the restaurant. The Valerys' Philadelphia-based partners, Maduro Daggle and Anne Baum-Stein, he said, did not play an active role in the restaurant's operations.
"I think everyone going to be very happy with the new management direction," Valery said.
The Chesapeake was closed for business on Wednesday night, and its re-opening date is unclear.
A sign posted on the restaurant's front door said, "The Chesapeake will be closed temporarily while construction proceeds. Special events are still being booked."
A similar message on the restaurant's website says: "We are currently closed for upstairs renovations, but are available for private events."
The sign provided the names of two contacts. One, Paul Daugherty, did not immediately return a call for comment. The voice mail of the other contact, Lamonte King, was full and not receiving messages.
The Chesapeake opened last June on the corner of Charles and Lafayette Streets in the same space where a Baltimore dining institution, the Chesapeake Restaurant, flourished in the 1950s and 1960s.