'This wasn't an easy decision for us:' A1A Ale Works in St. Augustine closing

The restaurant, which opened 29 years ago, is part of SPB Hospitality brands.

A1A Ale Works at 1 King St. in St. Augustine.
A1A Ale Works at 1 King St. in St. Augustine.
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A1A Ale Works in St. Augustine is shutting down.

“With a heavy heart, we announce the closure of A1A Aleworks on May 26th. We are grateful for your loyalty and invite you to say goodbye in the coming days,” the restaurant and taproom announced May 23 on social media.

The restaurant is at 1 King St. in the historic downtown at Avenida Menendez south of the Bridge of Lions across the street from Harbormaster Park. According to Flaglerlive.com, the restaurant opened in May 1995 in the former St. Augustine Plaza Hotel and Potter’s Wax Museum.

A1A Ale Works is owned by Houston-based SPB Hospitality.

"We can confirm that May 26, 2024, will be the last day of operations for A1A Ale Works," SPB Hospitality said in a statement. "This wasn't an easy decision for us, and the choice was ultimately made due to an expiring lease."

"We want to extend a heartfelt thank you to all our team members and loyal guests who've supported us over the years," the statement continued. "Your dedication and visits have filled our restaurant with unforgettable memories and experiences, and we truly cherish the relationships we've built with visitors from near and far. Thank you for being a part of our journey."

SPB Hospitality owns three other Northeast Florida restaurants.

They are Seven Bridges Grille & Brewery in Southside, Ragtime Tavern in Atlantic Beach and J. Alexander’s Restaurant in St. Johns Town Center.

The company also owns the Krystal fast-food chain.

"No other restaurants within our portfolio are affected by this closure,” SPB Hospitality said.

Property records show the building that houses A1A Ale Works is owned by Catherine and David White through 1 King LLC & CHW LLC, who acquired it in 2003. The Whites own O.C. White’s Seafood & Spirits in St. Augustine.  The White Room, a wedding and event venue, also is in the 1 King St. building.

Other SPB Hospitality brands include Twisted Tenders, Leo’s Italian Kitchen, Ember Smoked BBQ, Old Chicago Pizza + Taproom, Logan’s Roadhouse, Rock Bottom Restaurant & Breweries, Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurants, Chophouse & Brewery, Big River Grill, Merus Grill, Overland Park Grill, Redlands Grill and Stoney River Steakhouse and Grill.

SPB, owned by Fortress Investment Group, was formed in 2020 to acquire the bankrupt CraftWorks company.

Fortress says it is a “leading, highly diversified global investment manager” with $48 billion in assets under management.



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