Spot for elevated Southern eats quickly closes in Hamilton

Southern hospitality was short-lived at a Hamilton restaurant that opened and closed in a mere matter of months. 

Whoa Nelly! showed promise when it first launched in October 2023 at 137 Locke Street South, in the former home of longstanding craft beer kitchen Brux House that had more recently been British-style gastropub The Lockesmith

The Lockesmith – itself also quite short-lived – changed to Whoa Nelly! this past fall promising modern takes on Southern comfort foods like brisket, ribs, fried chicken, shrimp & grits, sandwiches, share plates, and more. 

However, despite some promising reviews from the get-go, the restaurant unceremoniously closed its doors in December. A ‘For Lease’ signs now adorns the front windows of the Locke Street restaurant and the business is listed as ‘Permanently Closed’ on Google. 

A reason for the closure hasn’t been made public by Whoa Nelly! – and the restaurant hasn’t posted on its social media since early November – but it’s sad to see a Hamilton small business have to bid farewell. 

Lead image courtesy of @whoanellyhamilton

Comments 1

  • Matt L

    16.01.2024 1:07 am

    The economic viability of the downtown core has become inhospitable for small businesses. I’m starting to actively encourage restaurants to consider moving operations to the West Mountain or Ancaster where demographics profile is more suitable for economic growth.


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