ACME -- A well-known local steak house on East Grand Traverse Bay closed its doors.

Mountain Jack's Steakhouse, 5555 U.S. 31 North in Acme, closed following the Labor Day weekend. A telephone message at the restaurant said it was closed "permanently" and thanked patrons for its 14 years of operation.

The restaurant's parent chain, Steakhouse Partners Inc. and wholly owned subsidiaries Paragon Steakhouse Restaurants Inc., including Paragon of Michigan, filed for Chaper 11 bankruptcy proceedings in federal bankruptcy court in mid-May.

The company operates 21 steakhouses in the Midwest and California. The petition listed assets of $10 to $50 million and debts from $50 to $100 million.

In its filings, the company blamed rising beef prices related to the conversion of more corn for alternative fuel production for some of its financial problems, along with less dining out because of the economic slowdown. Steakhouse Partners also operates restaurants under the Hunter Steakhouse and Carvers names.

The parent company also filed for bankruptcy in 2002.

A local manager would not comment on the restaurant's closing. A call to Ed Sauble, a district manager for Paragon Steakhouse Restaurants, was not returned Wednesday afternoon. The restaurant originally opened as the Embers by the Bay, owned and operated by Clarence Tuma and Keith Charters, who still own the property.

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