The original Union Square outpost of brew pub mini-chain Heartland Brewery will close tonight, after 20 years in business. A commenter floated the rumor yesterday in the comments section of a post on Jeremiah's Vanishing New York about all the old places that have shuttered this year, and a call to the restaurant confirms that the news is true.
If this feels like deja vu, it's because Heartland was originally supposed to close at exactly this time last year. Obviously that didn't happen, but an employee at the restaurant assures Eater that this time, it's for real. The closure is almost certainly due to the rent hike owner Jon Bloostein described last year, which will raise the cost of occupying that primo Union Square real estate to $2 million a year.
Overall, the restaurants of Union Square are in a bad state these days. Blue Water Grill faces a mega rent hike too, as does, most notably, Danny Meyer's original hit, Union Square Cafe. Both spaces are currently on the market, as both restaurants prepare to enter their final year in existence. Heartland, at least, still lives on at three Midtown locations.