Bobby Flay is shuttering his Midtown West American restaurant Bar Americain early next year, a spokesperson confirmed on Thursday. A “prohibitively costly” renovation is the reason for the departure, as Times food editor Sam Sifton first Tweeted.
Come January 17, Bar Americain will end its 13-year run as a mid-level tourist and working lunch destination on 52nd Street. Its last review in 2010 earned it two stars from the Times for “the particularly American style of Mr. Flay’s cooking, which generally matches heat with sweet, rather than sour.” The restaurant became known for its Kentucky hot brown, though it never quite caught on with the food-obsessed set.
The celebrity chef points to the need to update the restaurant to stay with the times in order to renew the lease, which he and his partners decided not to do. “My partners and I were in agreement that in order to take on another long term commitment that would take us into the next decade or two, Bar Americain would need a full renovation that would be prohibitively costly,” he said in a statement.
Flay continued on to hint at the possibility of “a few new projects that are on the horizon in New York and elsewhere domestically.” He still runs Gato downtown, as well as his chain of Bobby’s Burger Palaces.
Bar American will close its NYC location on January 17; the Mohegan Sun location will remain open.