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Under new ownership, Cure a happy Capitol Hill story of exit — and entrance — across from Cal Anderson

(Image: Cure)

With success in Capitol Hill food and drink more and more dictated by the muscle and scale that comes with owning multiple locations, there aren’t a lot of happy exit stories for owners of simpler ventures dedicated to simply giving the neighbors a nice place to hang out, eat, and drink. We’re happy to report an exception in Capitol Hill’s Cure. In addition to a good feels exit story, the Nagle Place bar also has a happy entrance story.

“That’s kind of the inspiration here,” new Cure owner Sean Sheffer tells CHS. “A lot of people talk about their dreams of having their own place. I wanted to do it right.”

Sean and his brother Joe Sheffer took over the small bar across from Cal Anderson this week from Amy and Eric Haldane. The couple opened Cure on the tucked away alley in spring of 2011 and posted a goodbye to regulars announcing the sale over the weekend:

First and foremost, thanks to all of you that have supported us and become a part of our family. We have spent almost 7 years getting to know you and making memories with you. Opportunities abound. Things will remain much the same. Cure will continue with new owners who are committed to preserving what Eric & I have built over the years. Prosciutto di Parma will be there, fromage blanc with truffle honey will be there . . . . I could go on.

CHS talked with Amy Haldane about Cure and its relationship to nearby Cal Anderson shortly after the bar’s 2011 opening. “It should be great for business,” Haldane said. “We’ve tried to keep our menu accessible and affordable. Also, you just don’t want a heavy beer after a game of dodge ball, so we have Busch.” CHS was a little early in our enthusiasm for the bar as a first step in transforming Nagle into something more than a backstreet alleyway. By 2019, finally, the street will be transformed along with the transit oriented development around Capitol Hill Station.

Sean Sheffer’s hopes for Cure are more immediate, wanting to “do the previous owners right” and keep the space as a popular hangout for locals and the emphasis on charcuterie and cocktails.

What happens when you get serious about being part of a neighborhood bar business? The search for a space was surprisingly competitive with even a Wharton-powered resume not always convincing to some landlords, crazy rents, and Starbucks-sized mystery bidders sometimes ending up on the other side trying to get a space the brothers were looking at.

With a background at the Wharton School and Microsoft, the Hill resident is taking the new job extremely seriously. “A lot of people think it’s like a party. I went into it with a serious approach,” Sean says.

Best of all for the Las Vegas-rooted brothers will be working on Joe’s dream of tending a neighborhood bar — and, of course, a short commute. Sean lives just down E Pine.

Cure is located at 1641 Nagle Pl. It officially reopens under new ownership Friday, November 24th. You can learn more at


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