Roots Burger Bar owner Scott Wise files for personal bankruptcy

ByDonald L. Leech

Oct 21, 2022

Local restaurant owner Scott Wise and his wife Amy Wise filed for personal bankruptcy earlier this month following financial debt three years ago.

When reached on his cell phone Friday morning by IndyStar, Wise said the case would not impact his Roots Burger Bar restaurants. He declined to comment further.

Wise opened the Roots Burger Bar in Muncie in 2019. Locations in Indianapolis and Carmel opened within the last year.

The Wises filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy on October 5 in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Indiana. Under Chapter 7, a business or individual liquidates assets.

In the joint case, Wise and his wife estimated their assets were worth around $956,000. The couple listed $3.4 million in liabilities. They reported monthly income of $23,579 versus monthly expenses of $23,550, a difference of $29.

Wise, who founded the former Scotty’s Brewhouse chain and Esports Restaurant Group, LLC, which owns Roots Burger Bar, had already filed for bankruptcy in 2019, according to the 2022 filing.

When the couple filed in 2019, they listed assets of around $1.2 million and liabilities of $2.7 million.

Previously:Scotty’s Brewhouse founder says he didn’t mislead investors

The couple estimated between 50 and 100 creditors, the majority of which were from business debts incurred in 2019, according to bankruptcy forms.

Scotty’s Brewhouse Sold, LLC Files for Bankruptcy

The first Scotty’s Brewhouse opened in Muncie in 1996, quickly expanding to more than 20 locations across the country.

In 2016, Sage sold Scotty’s Brewhouse to Due North Holdings LLC, based in Arizona. The channel filed for bankruptcy in 2018, closure of three Indiana restaurants in Carmel, Muncie and Indianapolis. They also closed a location in Waco, Texas.

One month after Scotty’s Brewhouse closed, former investors who alleged Wise defrauded them filed a complaint against him in 2019.

Wise told IndyStar in 2019 that he was disappointed to hear about the lawsuit.

“Unfortunately,” Wise told IndyStar in 2019“The Scotty’s Brewhouse chain has experienced financial difficulties which have negatively impacted the performance of all investors, including me.”

The complaint was dismissed in December 2020.

Roots Burger Bar:Scotty’s Brewhouse Founder Scott Wise Opens New Restaurants

Roots Burger Bars in Indianapolis, Carmel

When announcing the restaurant’s expansion to Carmel, Wise told IndyStar that he sold Scotty’s Brewhouse because he had lost his passion for the industry, which was rekindled by Roots Burger Bar.

Roots Burger Bar is planning locations in Carmel and Indianapolis.  This site is in the shopping complex at the corner of 126th Street and Gray Road.

“I want to do it on my terms where we’re going back: going back to my roots, going back to my original restaurant, going back to my original hometown, going back to my original concept of a menu which was very simple,” Wise told IndyStar last December.

IndyStar Archives contributed to this report.

Rachel Fradette is a general assignment reporter at IndyStar. Reach her at [email protected] or follow her on Twitter at @Rachel_Fradette.