Dec 19, 2022 - Business

Charlotte’s oldest restaurant is for sale

Green's Lunch in Uptown. Photo courtesy of Jason Thomas

The future of Green’s Lunch, the iconic Uptown hotdog joint that’s almost a century old, is uncertain as the restaurant’s longtime owners have decided to sell the building.

Asked whether she will close immediately when the property sells or wait, owner Joanna Sikiotis tells Axios: “It’s up in the air right now.”

Why it matters: Green’s opened in 1926, and it’s been run by the same family (Sikiotis’s) since 1975. The restaurant routinely fills up with everyone from construction workers to bankers looking for a quick bite. In a city quickly filling up with national chains and high-end options, Green’s has been a steady go-to for a low-cost lunch.

What’s happening: Last week, Sands Investment Group listed the building at 309 W. 4th St. for $3 million. The property is in a prime location — steps away from Truist Field and Romare Bearden Park in the heart of the bustling city center.

SIG’s listing described it as “one of the most desirable development opportunities in all of Charlotte.” Saeed Moghadam, an investment sales advisor with the firm, says a buyer could seek to purchase adjacent parcels — the building next door and the surface lot.

  • “We’re looking for buyers who might be willing to be patient,” Moghadam tells Axios. “Assemblage makes this really well worth it for the buyer.”
  • Local development writer Jason Thomas first reported the listing.

Of note: Green’s was for sale last year but the owners ultimately didn’t find a buyer, per Moghadam.

Between the lines: It’s become increasingly challenging running a small restaurant that charges modest prices in a growing city. What’s more, Sikiotis tells Axios, Uptown workers haven’t fully returned, so that’s weighed on the restaurant.

“We can’t compete with the franchises paying $15 an hour, and we can’t find any help. So I mean, for me to be able to pay $15 an hour, I got to have $5 hotdogs, and nobody’s gonna pay $5 for a hotdog,” Sikiotis tells Axios.

“When you can’t find any help, and you’re working your bottom off, you know, it’s just not worth it sometimes.”


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