Hot Cluckers, one of the eateries owned by embattled restaurateur Michael Felts, has closed in Springfield, though a relocation to another city may be on the table.
In a Facebook post and its comments yesterday, company officials said the last day in business at 4406 S. Campbell Ave. was Oct. 25.
"While we struggled to find our place in the Springfield market, we learned a tremendous amount of knowledge that will benefit us as we prepare to relocate to our new home," the post reads.
In the post’s comments, a Hot Cluckers official said, "We have been scouting a few cities to possibly relocate to."
Hot Cluckers, a Nashville-style fried chicken concept, first opened in 2018 at 1450 E. Sunshine St. The south-side restaurant, which debuted in 2020 at the former Famous Dave’s space, originally was intended to be a second location, but staffing issues changed the plans, according to past reporting.
The closure comes six weeks after Felts was accused by the federal government of Paycheck Protection Program fraud. A Sept. 13 complaint filed in the Western District of Missouri Southern Division accuses Felts of using companies under his control to complete false and fraudulent applications for PPP loans, Springfield Business Journal previously reported. Felts in September told SBJ that he did not believe any of his restaurants would close in the wake of the federal government’s allegations.
Also in September, a Greene County Circuit Court ruling forced an eviction at the former Hot Cluckers space on East Sunshine Street, according to past reporting. It had been used as a test kitchen for Felts' various ventures and not for food service. Property owner CLB Apex Holdings LLC filed suit against Hot Cluckers LLC to take possession of the property, and the court additionally ordered a money judgment of $4,663.
The Facebook post yesterday indicates Hot Cluckers-style chicken will continue to be served at Bourbon & Beale, another of Felts' Springfield restaurants.
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