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Smoke's and The Beaver Trap Leave Town

Closings: March 2019

by Sabine Bickford

From the March, 2019 issue

South University's Canadian-themed two-in-one student destination, Smoke's Poutinerie and The Beaver Trap, has closed after only a year and a half. The Trap was a bar and Smoke's was a franchise of a Canadian chain specializing in poutine--French fries topped with cheese curds and gravy.

When the Ann Arbor location opened, its four-person team of Midwest franchisers also planned locations in Lansing and Detroit. Those never materialized, and Smoke's website shows no locations in Michigan at all--the nearest location is in Windsor. Closer to home, both HopCat and Zingerman's Roadhouse offer their own versions of the French-Canadian classic.

In a February interview, Smoke's owner Ryan Smolkin told the Franchise Times that Michigan was an area of continued interest for the brand and that business with certain unspecified franchise owners had not worked out. "For the greater good of the rest of the franchisees and other partners I have, we've got to take action," said Smolkin. "We've got to be there, and I didn't grasp that in the early going." A message left with one of the Ann Arbor franchisees wasn't returned.


Got a retail or restaurant change? Email or leave a voicemail at (734) 769-3175 x 330.     (end of article)

[Originally published in March, 2019.]


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