As a number of readers have noticed, Bill the Butcher has hung a sign in the window:
Due to circumstances beyond our control we are closed until further notice.
Thank you for your support, your patronage and welcoming us to your neighborhood. We hope to see you soon.
I put in an inquiry to Bill the Butcher’s PR agent for more information, but haven’t heard back, but apparently all the Bill the Butcher shops, not just Wallingford’s branch, are similarly shuttered.
Financial problems aren’t new to BtB. The company took an unusual path to become the first publicly traded butcher shop, executing a reverse takeover, but has had trouble raising money in the public market. Back in 2011, The Eater reported that BtB was down to $40,000 in cash, a dangerous position for a company of that size that needs to buy inventory, pay workers, etc.
According to BtB’s web site, the company is the “is the brainchild of retail expert J’Amy Owens”. Not mentioned is J’Amy’s co-founder, William “Bill” Von Schneidau, who the The Stranger reported (again, back in 2011):
were lovers and business partners who didn’t care to label their purportedly local/organic meat; now some labeling has happened, and their romance is no more. You may recall this memorable quote:
“William’s the steak and I’m the sizzle in our partnership… I can’t tell you what to buy and how to cook it,” Owens says, “but William can, all the livelong day.”
King County Court filings show that Von Schneidau is suing Bill the Butcher, Inc. and J’Amy Owens et al. for breach of contract, wrongful termination, and “willfully making illegal securities filings in connection with the Company’s becoming a publicly traded company.”
Mention of Von Scheidau disappeared from the company web site around the same time.
(Thanks for the photo Joseph Mizrahi. Thanks for the tip, Janey, Judith and Jeff!)