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Owner to sell Grilla Bites

Monika Dubois says 'financial struggle' prompted decision popular Plaza restaurant
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Grilla Bites owner Monika Dubois is selling her restaurant on the Plaza. Julia Moore / Daily TidingsJulia Moore
 Posted: 2:00 AM October 17, 2012

Grilla Bites owner Monika Dubois has had her fill of running the all-organic Ashland restaurant.

Dubois opened on the Plaza a little over six years ago, but announced her plan to sell the restaurant Monday through a widely circulated email that was eventually posted on Facebook.

She said her decision was prompted by "financial struggle."

"I've received a flurry of emails and phone calls from people letting me know that they support me, but can't buy a restaurant "… a few have been interested in running it."

Dubois used to run the restaurant with her ex-husband, Tom Dubois, until their partnership ended about a year ago, she said.

Tom Dubois has expressed interest in taking over Grilla Bites, but she has received other serious offers as well, she said.

"I am in negotiations," she said. "By the end of the week, we'll know the future of Grilla Bites."

In her email, Dubois said if the restaurant hasn't received any serious interest by the end of the week, she would sell its contents individually.

"Running a restaurant is both really rewarding and really challenging at the same time. "… I am just ready for a new venture, and looking forward to more free time," she said.

Her new venture will certainly include a new job, Dubois said, because she still has car and house payments to make, but she plans to stay in Ashland. Dubois met with Grilla Bites' 15 employees Monday to explain her decision, she said. The restaurant was closed Monday and Tuesday, but is open today at 11 a.m.

"They were so grateful for everything "… they were just really supportive of me and told me not to worry," she said. "The employees have been the greatest team anyone could ask for. If I didn't have the employees I do, I probably would have made this decision earlier."

Dubois has been considering selling the restaurant for a few months, she said.

"It's sad," she said, leaning on the front counter, waving to curious potential customers standing at the locked door Tuesday.

"I am certifiably crazy for certified organics," she said. "I still love this place, and the connection to the community we've established. "… We worked hard to make this a successful restaurant, which is hard to do in Ashland."

Anyone interested in contacting Dubois can email her at

Reach reporter Sam Wheeler at 541-499-1470 or email

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