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Astoria Banquet Hall Riccardo’s By the Bridge Has Permanently Closed After Nearly 70 Years

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Plus, one of the city’s best bakeries is planning a sequel in Tribeca — and more intel

A wedding venue and event space sits on a street with a cursive blue sign that reads “Riccardo’s” Google Maps

The venue’s fourth-generation owner announced the closure earlier this week

After close to 70 years of business and four generations of family ownership, Riccardo’s by the Bridge has permanently closed. The banquet hall in Astoria, Queens has been a popular venue for weddings and birthdays since it opened in the neighborhood in 1951. Now after close to seven decades of business, Riccardo’s has permanently closed “solely due to the various impacts of the COVID pandemic,” according to current owner Anthony Corbisiero, the grandson of founder Richard Corbisiero. “There is simply no realistic path forward given all of the unknowns,” he shared in an announcement on the venue’s website, which cites the uncertainty of a return to indoor dining in the near future.

In August, the New York Times reported that as many as one-third of the city’s small businesses could close as a result of the economic downturn from COVID-19. Revenues have dropped at businesses across the city, but none more so than for independently-owned venues, event spaces, and concert halls, whose business came to a screeching halt when indoor gatherings were banned in March. Nearly six months later, the state has yet to offer any guidance on when event spaces might be able to reopen for business, and the National Independent Venue Association (NIVA) predicted that it could be at least one more year until large indoor gatherings are allowed again, while ticketed outdoor gatherings are still prohibited in New York City.

In other news

— Pastry chef and Eater Young Gun Zoe Kanan will be hosting an online Rosh Hashanah baking demo in partnership with the Jewish Food Society this month. Registration for the free September 15 event is now open.

— Thyme Bar, the new low-waste cocktail bar in the Flatiron District, is offering a prix-fixe outdoor dining menu until September 18. The menu includes an appetizer, food item, two cocktails, and dessert for $45. Thursday through Saturday.

— The Lower East Side’s newly opened Kissaki will now offer omakase boxes and a few sushi items from Guyer’s on the Upper West Side, a spokesperson for the restaurant says.

— Patisserie Chanson, one of the city’s essential bakeries, is planning a second location in the former space of Maison Kayser in Tribeca.

— Our list of 24 essential ice cream cones to grip with force: