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Wednesday, September 25, 2013


         In the next six weeks we'll be hearing a lot more about "Scotty's Landing".   It's the Grove's beloved, bayside restaurant that the City of Miami plans to demolish.  They want to replace it with a Shula's Steakhouse.
     City of Miami voters will make the final decision in the upcoming November 5 election.
   When discussing the subject I am often asked, "Is there really a Scotty?".   "Yes", I answer, "He is usually there, the guy cleaning the yard".

      That's what Scott Wessel was doing when I met him a few years ago. 
     I was walking by on a Sunday morning.  I said hello to a fellow picking up the  restaurant's trash that was missed the night before.  We got into a conversation and he revealed that the ran the place and the Grove Key Marina behind it.
     Since then, I have seen him a number of times and nearly every time, he's cleaning his restaurant on a Sunday morning.   Scott Wessel likes hard work and a low profile.
      Nevertheless,  he told me a few things about himself last weekend.   As he happily cleaned his "Canesmobile" (the Hurricanes had won big the night before), he told me he came here from Milwaukee.  He began running the Charthouse bar in 1986.    
       Next door was Captain Dick's Tackle Shack.   The place was poorly run and Scott knew it.
After Dick died in the late 80's Scott got an opportunity to take over the disorganized, somewhat seedy tavern. 
   He and his wife, Kate, shook the shack up and made it much better.  Locals noticed and business boomed.
    A few years later, Scott took over the Grove Key Marina lease as well.
    The long-term lease for the entire 7-acre property (it includes Scotty's, the Charthouse, and the marina) ended last year.  Its future is uncertain.
     It is obvious that Scotty loves his namesake.  Thousands of people love him and his bayside cafe.    
  He'd like to get his lease re-newed, and completely renovate his restaurant.  That way, he can continue to make his customers happy and also, clean tables and pick up trash on Sunday mornings.

         If the city wins the November election Scotty's will fall and the steakhouse will replace it. 
   A year from now you may be able stroll by the soaring glass of a new multi-level monster.  Maybe you'll even see Don Shula cleaning up. 
But I doubt it.


1 comment:

  1. ridiculous. Scotty's gets plenty of business. This City is being taken over by greedy idiots. Ameobas.