Nautical-themed West Village dive bar the Rusty Knot — launched in 2008 by LES hotspot Freemans’ co-founder Taavo Somer and disgraced restaurateur Ken Friedman — has permanently closed.
Somer confirmed the news in a post on Instagram in mid-July, writing that “this weekend and next weekend are our final days as we succumb to another new your city [sic] landlord during a pandemic.”
The quirky bar sat on the West Side Highway overlooking the Hudson River, and was quite popular during its run. The bar’s food menu featured comforting staples like pretzel dogs and tacos al pastor, and the tiki-themed cocktails at the spot included pina coladas, mai tais, and the bar’s signature drink, a frozen mojito dubbed the Rusty Knot.
Eater has reached out to Somer and Friedman for more information on the closure.
Aside from the Rusty Knot, Somer is still involved with several other Manhattan bars, including Banzar Bar, the cocktail bar connected to Freemans, and Ray’s, the LES dive bar co-owned by actor Justin Theroux.
The Rusty Knot joins many NYC restaurants and bars that have shuttered amid the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, as owners struggle to overcome mounting costs like rent while dining rooms remain shut for the foreseeable future.