CLEVELAND (WJW) — The post-pandemic world has become “more and more difficult” for the operators of Melt Bar and Grilled, who announced Tuesday the closure of two locations.

On Monday, the regional restaurant chain permanently closed its locations in Dayton’s Fairfield Commons Mall and in Canton’s Belden Village Mall. Owner Matt Fish said the decision to scale back was made last year, to improve operations and “guest experience.”

“It’s been five great years at both locations,” owner Matt Fish is quoted in a news release. “However, we feel having a smaller footprint and getting back to our hometown Cleveland roots is incredibly important right now. This was a very difficult decision for many reasons, but ultimately this move will put the company in a much better position for continued success.”

The eatery limited its menu in 2021 due to staffing challenges. But with a smaller company, the company expects to bring back its larger menu in March, including “some old favorites” — seven classic Melt grilled cheeses sandwiches, a starter and a salad. It’s also redesigning its website.

“All other Melt Bar and Grilled locations throughout Northeast Ohio and Columbus remain open and are doing well,” Fish is quoted in the release. “We’ve loved being a part of the Dayton and Canton community and want to thank all of our loyal guests and neighbors — we’ve cherished the past 5 years and thank you all for your support! We truly hope our friends and loyal guests will continue to visit us at our other Melt Bar and Grilled locations.”

Melt operates nine other locations across Ohio, according to its website — in Akron, Avon, Cedar Point in Sandusky, Cleveland, Easton and the original eatery in Lakewood, which first opened in 2006.