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Midwest Favorite Dairy Queen Bows Out of Manhattan

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Plus, the Mondrian Park Avenue hotel has reopened with a pop-up from chef Rocco DiSpirito — and more intel

Two-Story Dairy Queen The First To Open In Manhattan Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images

Manhattan’s only Dairy Queen has permanently closed

Dairy Queen has permanently closed its only store in Manhattan after a six-year run, according to representatives from the company. The grates at the two-story Blizzard maker near Union Square have been down since May, and Time Out confirmed with the company that the owner of the franchise closed the shop shortly after that. Dairy Queen has two additional locations on Staten Island and a third at the Bay Plaza Shopping Center in the Bronx, though it’s not clear at this time whether the company plans to reopen another location in Manhattan.

The ice cream and fast food chain, ever-popular in the Midwest, received a grab-bag of responses in its six-year run in Manhattan. In the weeks after it opened on West 14th Street, near Sixth Avenue, Dairy Queen was swarmed. Not just with lines of customers hungry for nostalgia, but also with press from local food media. Grub Street pleaded with New Yorkers not to shop at the ice cream chain, urging them to patron the city’s “roster of independent, world-class ice cream shops” instead. Elizabeth Weiss at the New Yorker likewise wondered how the two-story “strip-mall staple” would impact local, independent businesses nearby. And, on a visit to the chain shortly after its Manhattan debut, Eater critic Robert Sietsema found that the restaurant chain’s iconic Blizzards, for all their nostalgia, were “awful” and often arrived half-melted.

Though Dairy Queen has three remaining outposts in NYC, the company’s presence has been eclipsed by other fast food brands, like Taco Bell and Krispy Kreme, which have recently announced ambitious plans to grow their presences in the five boroughs. Shortly after opening, spokesperson Dean Peters told the New Yorker that the chain had stayed out of NYC for so long due to high rent and operating costs. At the time, Peters said the brand had hopes to continue to expand into the city, though its last location opened in 2014.

In other news

— The Mondrian Park Avenue Hotel in Nomad reopened this week with a new pop-up from James Beard Award-winning chef Rocco DiSpirito, formerly of the Standard Grill, according to a spokesperson for the hotel. DiSpirito will be heading the kitchen programs at the hotel’s popular restaurant Cleo, as well as at its rooftop bar the Mondrian Terrace.

— This Bed-Stuy resident is selling pastry boxes filled with Filipinx treats like ube puto, peach-mango pies, and black sesame cinnamon rolls for delivery. Half of the proceeds from each box go toward local mutual aid group Bed-Stuy Strong.

— The owner of Brik in Astoria, which has had its street seating permit and liquor license suspended, claims that he’s been unfairly punished for social-distancing violations in the neighborhood.

— Waterfront‌ ‌shopping‌ ‌center ‌‌Brookfield‌ ‌Placehas released a new online cookbook with recipes from Gabriel Kreuther, P.J. Clark, and Black Seed Bagels. Proceeds benefit employee relief fund Relief Opportunities for All Restaurants.

— Food recommendation app 8it is running a promotion for people named Karen who aren’t #Karens. Thirty Karens will be treated to meals at popular NYC restaurants including Madame Vo and Great NY Noodletown.

— Florists in New York City have seen an uptick in business thanks to restaurateurs who are buying tropical plants for their outdoor areas.

— Sheepshead Bay’s legendary roast beef maker Roll N Roaster turned 50 earlier this month.

— The Long Island City market celebrated its 10th anniversary this week.

— Some tourists are beginning to trickle back into New York City.

— 4, 10, and another 10:

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