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The Classics (Formerly Ray's The Classics) - Elliott Ratley and Nick Lopata Take Over from Michael Landrum - Closed


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Original Ray's: The Classics posts are in the Ray's: The Steaks Thread.

Saw this in the Gazette:

NOTICE
Notice is hereby given that application has been made by:
Elliott A. Rattley, Jr., Nicholas R. Lopata on behalf of ARS Silver Spring, LLC, for the transfer of a Beer, Wine & Liquor License, Class B, 
H/R, On Sale Only, for the premises known as The Classics Restaurant, which premises are located at:
8606 Colesville Road Silver Spring, Maryland 20910 
A hearing on the application will be held in the First Floor Auditorium, Council Office Building, 100 Maryland Avenue, Rockville, Maryland, on:
Thursday: May 16, 2013 At: 11:30 a.m.
Any person desiring to be heard on said application should appear at the time and place fixed for said hearing.
BY: Kathie Durbin
Division Chief
Board of License Commissioners 
for Montgomery County, Maryland
MC 50306 (5-3, 5-10-13)
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Tweets tonight from Tim Carman:

This just in: Michael Landrum rewards two long-term employees by giving them Ray's the Classics free of charge. New name: The Classics.

(link)

Says new owner Elliott Rattley of The Classics: "We'll probably bring back the things the guests are asking." He won't name dishes yet.

(link)

Correction: Landrum didn't GIVE Ray's the Classics away free. He "passed it along w/ very favorable terms" to new owners. Still generous.

(link)

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I don't (think I) know Nick, but I know Elliott and Michael, and I couldn't be happier for everyone involved. [There will be no "temporary downgrade out of conservatism"] - Elliott is a seasoned restaurant professional who's been around the block many times. I have a really good feeling about this transaction, and hope that it works out very well for all involved. Congratulations to all three gentlemen, and a toast is well-called for, to the next generation of Ray's The Classics.

Thank you also to everyone here who stayed on this (fairly major) story without blowing its cover until the time was right - that is a sign of professionalism and maturity, and you demonstrated it perfectly.

This situation is exactly parallel to what happened with Majestic Cafe and The Majestic: a change of ownership, accompanied by a slight change in name, the pair of which is sufficient to begin this new thread and retire the old Ray's The Classics thread. Ray's The Classics is the only restaurant in the history of downtown Silver Spring to be retired in Italic, and one of only two restaurants in *all* of Silver Spring to be retired in Italic, along with Gillian Clark's G-SPOT.

When they develop their own website, would someone point it out to me? Right now, the Dining Guide is using the old website which will almost surely be changed. Please PM me when you find out what it is, and I'll erase this paragraph. Thanks!

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Had dinner the other night and mostly things are unchanged, though the crab bisque had a slightly off taste from what I am accustomed to, can't quite place what was different though. Also a little sparse on the crab meat, no large chunks of crab meat this time. Hangar steak was cooked perfectly and mashed potato and spinach sides were abundant. Kids enjoyed the mac and cheese.

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Unfortunately, the hanger is now back to regular sized portions. Enjoyed a nice quiet dinner tonight after finding Lebanese Taverna closed, presumably due to weather. Got the mushrooms for the first time and while it is a ridiculous amount of shrooms, they are probably over 90% plain white mushrooms. Would be nice to see some more variety in there, though our son loved them.

Also for the complimentary dessert, they are now serving hot chocolate.

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reat meal at Ray's the Steaks over the weekend, but so sad to end the meal with a little piece of fudge instead of the usual hot chocolate. I loved that hot chocolate!

It's been a while since I've been there...could have been the norm for a while.

 

We were at the Classics 2 weeks ago and they had the hot chocolate.

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Wednesday night - went to a movie and then dinner for an anniversary celebration.

The steak remains excellent. Nick was behind the bar, so the bar service was also excellent. We were too full for for dessert, but it looks like it remains as it was (and how I wish the vanilla cheesecake was still available.)

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We were at the Classics 2 weeks ago and they had the hot chocolate.

Went twice in one week a couple weeks ago, wife's birthday and then family in town. My mother loves going to the Classics. Anyway, our daughter was really upset that they didn't have the tiger butter aka fudge, so I had her go ask the owner, Nick, when they would have the chocolate fudge. He said they'd be switching over as it warmed up into summer. She was not so upset about the hot chocolate on our second visit.

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Went with a group of 7 a little over a week ago. Portions remain generous but quality was a bit hit and miss. Two steaks were overcooked, requested med-rare and came out med creeping into med-well. The waiter half heartedly offered to fix it, but both people with the steaks declined. Also, there is now an upcharge on the bistro special if you want the bisque or iceberg wedge salad as opposed to the basic salad. Still a good value, but need to make sure those steaks are cooked properly.

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Nice meal seated at a table in the bar with another couple. The "bar special" meal remains an excellent deal at $25 for a starter-crab bisque or salad and a choice of hangar steak, scallops or salmon. I went with the bisque/hangar option and enjoyed both. Meat was cooked MR as requested. We shared a piece of the homemade coconut cake which was very flavorful if a bit dry. We also tried their bacon appetizer which was delicious. Sides (creamed spinach and mashed potatoes) were good and replenished when requested. Team service was friendly and attentive but not overly so.  Wine list is typical marked up Montgomery county but some good choices.

It's getting harder and harder to find a "value" meal in this city but this remains one.

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I took my toddler there last night for an impromptu steakfest and the wait staff was so absolutely nice to her. I felt a bit self-conscious being the "the table with the baby" but they were made us feel at ease and we had a great time. (took a few walks up and down Georgia avenue when someone got wiggly!) Food at the Classics is still great, not much to report other than that I could eat my weight in creamed spinach and hanger steak if given the chance. Also the crab royale is amazing. 

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On 2/12/2018 at 3:05 PM, ElGuapo said:

The Classics restaurant at 8606 Colesville Rd. will close at the end of February after about 4½ years of operation:

To clarify, 4.5 years since Nick and Elliott bought the place from Landrum. It's been open for almost 12.

This sucks.

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Nooooo! This is one of my family's Silver Spring standbys. Too sad. We'll definitely be in for a final dinner, probably this Sunday so I can have prime rib.

Interesting that some of the Source of the Spring comments mention Urban Butcher as instrumental to The Classics' demise. Even though they both serve steak I view them as very different restaurants. I've been to The Classics many times since moving to Silver Spring (and even a couple of times before moving), but I've only been to Urban Butcher a couple of times (and my husband LOVES steak). I guess it depends on how you order, but I find Urban Butcher to be way more expensive than The Classics, and it also has a much trendier vibe. The Classics is, well, classic, with good food at reasonable prices. The set menu with the hanger steak can't be beat. I've been happy with the service at The Classics overall (although there's one waiter I didn't love). They've always been very nice to my toddler even though it's not really a kiddie restaurant. Ugh. Boo.

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Another restaurant from my DR.com "heyday". . . . Sigh.

I hadn't visited since the ownership changed but, during its time as a Ray's venue, I enjoyed many a fine meal here. Steaks were pristine, the sides ample and tasty, and cocktails were top-notch---especially the house-brandied cherries! Fare thee well.

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Co-Owner Elliott Radley released a statement: "The Classics Restaurant, Silver Spring MD, will close for business at the end of the day on February 27, 2018. Opened as “Ray’s The Classics” in August 2006 and continued in business as “The Classics Restaurant” from July 2013, dwindling market and support from local government makes continuation of business untenable."

"Classics Co-Owner Releases Statement on Closing" by Mike Diegel on sourceofthespring.com

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Good statement by Elliott. More people should speak out like this. The ridiculous MoCo Liquor Control Board, after all  these years is still a terrible joke in terms of pricing and it's non-existent "service", the county itself has an unfriendly business climate. Its a shame an affluent county like this is run in such a backwards manner.

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14 minutes ago, dracisk said:

This is why we can't have nice (restaurant) things. Very frustrating.

Perhaps if MoCo residents simply refused to vote for candidates that support the DLC, that would get the message across.  What groups are working on the broader business issues?  After nearly a decade working in MoCo, I'm running across one of these for the first time - but it's completely absurd.

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40 minutes ago, zgast said:

Perhaps if MoCo residents simply refused to vote for candidates that support the DLC, that would get the message across.  What groups are working on the broader business issues?  After nearly a decade working in MoCo, I'm running across one of these for the first time - but it's completely absurd.

I'm ashamed to say I don't follow county politics very closely. Here's how the candidates for county executive come out on this issue. I'd have a hard time voting for someone only based on this issue, but I'd certainly consider it in my overall assessment.

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I used the shrug emoji because although you're right that the candidates differ on what should happen to the DLC, they all (whether explicitly or implicitly) admit to some degree that only so much can be done unilaterally as County Executive, and then the rest needs state-wide support.

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Do Moco restaurants not have a lobbying contingent for this issue?  It seems like it would be a worthwhile investment and they could likely do some PR for public support.  If you got the majority of MoCo delegates in support, the rest of the state would likely go along.  Their voting block alone is huge compared to other counties.

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4 hours ago, ktmoomau said:

Do Moco restaurants not have a lobbying contingent for this issue? 

There are at least two threads here on the subject: Montgomery County Liquor Laws & Montgomery County May Ease Alcohol Rules (for Restaurants).

It seems like there should be a $imple fix, but no.

ETA: Tonight’s dinner was a Dark N Stormy, Super Tuscan, Crab Bisque, and Onglet with sides. Sniff, sigh. Remembering Michael’s pre-opening DR dinner. Sigh. Mmm, leftovers...

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I went last night with my husband and almost 4-year-old. I thought I'd have the prime rib, which I love and is a special on Sundays, but I ended up getting the hanger steak, which was delicious as always. When we arrived around 5:30pm it was busier than I was expecting, and when we left around 7:15pm it was mobbed. Our waitress said she'd only been working there about 4 weeks, which makes me wonder whether the closure was not something the owners saw coming.

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They are mobbed during every opening hour, and expect to be until the lights turn off.

If you plan on going, either hit the bistro and go as the doors open, or make a reservation for the dining room. Either way, expect a leisurely meal. The kitchen and staff go into the weeds pretty much immediately.

Food last night was excellent as always, but we were there 3+ hours.

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9 minutes ago, DanielK said:

Food last night was excellent as always, but we were there 3+ hours.

I was wondering if there were other dr.com people there last night! Luckily we were able to sit in the dining room without a reservation, but we did get there early. And our meal also had a leisurely pace. Not that we cared because we wanted to savor the experience!

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My wife and I have reservations for the main dining room at 5:45 tomorrow (2/21). If any DR people are there, please stop by our table and say hello. I have shoulder length hair and a beard and if you can't find me ask to find the table with a reservation for Newman. Hoping to see other DR people and am looking forward to a great meal.

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