shoot the moon, the Spring Branch restaurant with an innovative self-service bar system at 8155 Long Point, is set to close. Its last day of service is Sunday, June 19, and it will be open until 10 p.m.
“We encourage people to come and enjoy their favorite drinks and menu items one last time. Order as much food as you want to take home. This will be the last chance to experience our tap wall and try our pizzas, appetizers, salads and more – it will be our last day of service,” a press release said.
Co-owners Kevin Floydchief Dax McNear and Jonah’s herd (owner of Cecil’s Pub and member of architectural design firm Collaborative Projects) announced Shoot The Moon in September 2019 – approximately six months before the COVID-19 pandemic began to wreak havoc on the restaurant industry and bars. The concept, designed as a family neighborhood center where children were welcome and where parents could relax over quality adult drinks, was very promising. It was the first company in Houston to have a beverage system made by Pour My Beer, which not only dispensed wine (self-serve wine dispensers are much more common), but also beer, cocktails in lot, spirits and, after some difficult adjustments, even champenoise.
Unfortunately, due to the timing, Shoot The Moon was immediately besieged with challenges. It took nearly two years to open due to the pandemic and supply chain issues, which affected the entire construction industry. Once it opened in August 2021, residents didn’t embrace it as enthusiastically as expected – despite the considerable reputation Floyd and McNear established during their work at the Hay Merchant and in other restaurants and bars in Houston. The press release reads as follows:
“When our foot traffic was low in the first few months of opening, we thought it was because of the COVID Delta wave in late summer 2021. However, now that the major health issues of COVID for the vast majority of the population seem to be behind us, it is clear that the economy is still suffering from escalating inflation – particularly food and fuel prices – and supply chain disruptions. endless supply in sight.
We believe that a huge marketing push could have potentially generated the level of foot traffic needed, but we were unable to access the necessary funds to launch a comprehensive marketing strategy.
It seems tragic that more people haven’t tried Shoot The Moon, as consumer reviews indicate the owners have achieved their goal of opening a family-run establishment with an honesty bar and accessible, quality food. “I’m a little sad when I don’t see their place getting too crowded, because I know if it was somewhere like downtown it would be overrun…but, selfishly, it works for those in town. ‘among us who prefer the quieter places,” reads. From another consumer: “First visit today and great experience. Great concept and great food. Nice clean restaurant. Meat lovers pizza was fantastic. The manager was very helpful and showed us the process for getting drinks. Love the idea of pour your own drinks. We will definitely be back. Can’t wait to try the quiz night on Thursday.
In addition to the lack of sales and the financial cushion needed for large-scale marketing that could have turned the tide, Shoot The Moon encountered another problem in April. Capital was raised through NextSeed, a crowdfunding investment platform which was later acquired by Republic Investment Services LLC. Unlike companies with equity investors, who see no return unless there are profits, NextSeed expects companies in its program to pay investors monthly from gross earnings. In April, Republic/NextSeed sent notices to more than 400 Shoot The Moon investors that the company was in default. With so many people receiving these notices, the situation soon became public knowledge.
“We’re going to have to hire a lawyer to fix this at this point, which is really too bad because every dollar I spend fixing this is a dollar I won’t have to spend on payroll, rent or pay for investors,” Floyd said in April. “If NextSeed gets very aggressive with this, I can see a scenario that forces us into bankruptcy, and then there would be no way to repay investors.”
With Shoot The Moon’s impending closure, it looks like Floyd’s bankruptcy prediction is indeed coming true, and it may not just be for the company. The press release reveals that even some of the owners could be forced into personal bankruptcy:
“We searched tirelessly for funding to help us overcome the financial hurdles we encountered on our start-up journey and to fuel enough marketing and publicity to make this location viable, but to no avail. We’ve turned every stone, shaken every tree to the point that Ownership members will most likely find themselves in personal bankruptcy as a result of this closure. »
All told, it’s an incredibly sad ending for everyone involved: owners, employees, loyal customers and investors.