Close to three years after New York’s first indoor dining shutdown, restaurants and bars continue to struggle. More than 4,500 have closed since the onset of the pandemic due to the economic downturn caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Since it’s difficult to track restaurant and bar closings, experts say that number is likely much higher and will take years to fully assess.
Below, Eater is documenting the city’s permanent restaurant closures, including a cornerstone of Brooklyn’s pizza scene, a Manhattan music venue with borscht martinis, a stalwart in the affordable dumpling scene, and the city’s oldest cheese shop. If a restaurant or bar has closed in your neighborhood, let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org. This post will be updated regularly.
Battery Park City: Neighborhood pizzeria Picasso Pizza is done after 26 years, Tribeca Citizen reports. The second-generation business opened in 1996 under owner Michael Magliulo Jr. A note posted on the restaurant’s door this week reads, “Michael Magliulo Jr., the subtenant of this unit, couldn’t access a fair new lease as a tenant.”
Bayside: The owners of Bayside Diner in Bayside, Queens, are calling it quits after more than a decade of running the restaurant, QNS reports. The diner has served the area for more than six decades, originally under the name the Copper Penny Diner, but brothers Spiro and Elias Katsihtis took over in 2010, following its closure that summer. They reopened the restaurant in its current form the following year.
Bushwick: Faro, an Italian restaurant known for its pastas, has closed after eight years. The restaurant announced the news on social media in February without providing a reason. Faro, led by the chef Kevin Adey, opened in the spring of 2015, nabbing a three-star review from Eater critic Robert Sietsema, who called it Bushwick’s “new star” that could go toe-to-toe with Roberta’s, within months of opening. Its last day was March 26.
Midtown: Pongsri Thai Restaurant, an off-shoot of a Thai restaurant in Chinatown that opened in 1972, has closed. The business thanked customers for 51 years of business across multiple locations in a note on the door. Its final day was February 25.
Ridgewood: Millers and Makers, a family-owned bakery that opened in the months before the pandemic, has closed. Owners Josh and Jess Pickens foreshadowed the closure in an Instagram post last month, writing that “as a small family business, the amount of adapting we’ve had to do with rising food costs and supply chain shortages has left us tired.” The business is now marked as permanently closed online.
Soho: Washington, D.C., import Georgetown Cupcakes closed its two outposts in Manhattan late last year. “After 10 years in New York and LA, our leases on our retail spaces there had concluded,” company co-owner Sophie Kallinis LaMontagne told Eater D.C. The shuttered stores opened in 2012 at the peak of the company’s popularity via the reality show DC Cupcakes, which aired on TLC from 2010 to 2013.
South Slope: Nostro, an Italian mainstay on the border of Brooklyn’s South Slope and Greenwood Heights neighborhoods, shut down on March 26. The restaurant closed over a dispute about its lease, according to one customer.
Tribeca: Amanda Cohen, owner of the Michelin-starred vegetarian restaurant Dirt Candy, closed her vegan burger spot Lekka Burger this week after three years. The restaurant did not provide a reason for the closure, which was reported by Tribeca Citizen. A manager told the publication that the restaurant “will be announcing some exciting news in the next month.” A second location, at the Urbanspace food hall in Midtown East, remains open.
Upper East Side: 3 Guys, a Greek diner on the corner of Madison Avenue and East 96th Street, has closed after more than 30 years. The restaurant’s owner said in an interview with Patch that “business never recovered” from the onset of the pandemic and rising rent costs were the nail in the coffin. “Diners — it’s very hard to survive,” he said.
Chinatown: The grates are down at C&L Dumpling House, a Chinatown stalwart that at one point sold five pan-fried dumplings for a dollar. The restaurant, open since 2009, is now permanently closed, according to Yelp, and the last review of the business on Google — a user claiming the shop was shut down during listed hours on a Friday and Saturday — is from more than a month ago.
East Village: Taiwanese bubble tea chain the Alley is out in the East Village. The restaurant posted a hand-written “closed until further notice” sign on its front door earlier this year, according to EV Grieve; Google now lists the business as permanently closed and the address has been removed from the company’s website.
Rego Park: Queens sushi bar Sai Sushi is out after four years due to the rising cost of rent and a downturn in business during the pandemic, Patch reports.
Upper East Side: Neil’s Coffee Shop, a Greek diner open since 1940, has closed. The restaurant’s closure comes after the death of owner of Cristo Kaloudis, who ran the business for around 40 years. The diner allegedly owed close to $1 million in unpaid rent; Kaloudis died two months before shop’s eviction date, Patch reports.
Upper West Side: DiDi Dumpling, a pair of Manhattan dumpling shops specializing in potstickers has shut down its uptown outpost. I Love the Upper West Side reports that the restaurant recently closed after opening at this address in August. Its location at 34 Lexington Avenue, near East 24th Street, remains open.
Flushing: Dumpling Galaxy, a Queens restaurant whose menu listed more than 100 types of dumplings, has shuttered. The business landed in Flushing’s Arcadia Mall in 2014 and earned a following for its abundant and unusual flavor combinations, like scrambled egg with dill, and duck with shiitake mushroom, which helped it nab a one-star rating from the New York Times within a year of opening. Earlier this month, a writer at Grub Street tweeted that chef Helen You had made the decision to retire; her restaurant is now listed as permanently closed on Google and the phone line has been disconnected.
Fort Greene: Fort Greene’s Bati Ethiopian Kitchen closed its original location after 13 years on New Year’s Eve. The restaurant is preparing to relocate to 1057 Fulton Street, near Irving Place, in Clinton Hill, according to an announcement on social media.
Chelsea: Cambodian sandwich shop Num Pang has apparently closed in Chelsea Market; the phone line has been disconnected and the website is down. Ben Daitz and Ratha Chaupoly launched Num Pang in 2009, focusing on sandwiches, bowls, salads, soups, dishes rooted in Southeast Asian cooking. The merchants once had multiple locations in Midtown, Chelsea, Battery Park City, and Union Square where the original was located before it moved across the street. Now there are none.
East Village: After less than a year of business, a Korean fast-casual spot for stuffed hot dogs, snacks, and K-pop stuff, the Texas-based Oh K-Dog & Egg Toast has closed on St. Marks Place.
Forest Hills: Another cheese shop has closed. Open since 1965, Cheese of the World closed at the end of last month, with the owners hinting they’d like to reopen in a new location. The store changed ownership in 2018, with Nellie Chiu buying it — a prosecutor who decided to become a cheesemonger when she saw the shop was for sale, Forest Hills Post reported. The shop sold a range of 250 cheeses.
Hamilton Heights: Flor de Broadway has closed, Yelp, Google, and a dead phone line confirm. The lunch counter served Cuban sandwiches and mofongo, among other dishes.
Long Island City: After two years in business, Black Star Bakery has closed, with the same owners swapping the concept for a bagel and juice spot.
Prospect Heights: It appears that no-frills Mexican Mi Tierra has closed; the website no longer allows for pre-orders and the phone has been disconnected.
Carroll Gardens: Sal’s Pizzeria, a Carroll Gardens fixture for over 50 years, closed on February 26 — one week after pizza institution Lenny’s Pizzeria ended its 70-year run in Bensonhurst. Sal’s informed customers of the decision with a note on its door, Brooklyn Magazine reports. Sal’s and its next-door restaurant, Mama Maria’s ,were run by John Esposito, whose parents oversaw the pizzeria starting in 1970. According to the publication, Mama Maria’s has since closed, and is becoming a doctor’s office.
East Village: It’s the end of the line for the East Village’s Anyway Cafe, EV Grieve reports. The “cafe,” really more of a music venue and vodka bar, was one of the last remaining restaurants in lower Manhattan to host live performances nightly, and was known for its borscht martini. According to its website, it had been open in this location since 1995 and at one point had three outposts. The Manhattan business closed things out with a final night of music on February 27. Ex-employees are allegedly attempting to come to an agreement with the building’s landlord to potentially reopen something in the East Second Street space; otherwise, they are plotting a “likeminded” business to Anyway Cafe, per EV Grieve.
Hell’s Kitchen: The Hell’s Kitchen location fast-casual chain Chirping Chicken has closed. A tipster reports that the building’s sign has been removed and the interior has since been gutted. The restaurant is closed on delivery apps, its phone line has since been disconnected, and the location has been removed from the chain’s website.
Little Italy: Alleva Dairy, considered to be New York City’s oldest cheese shop, held its last day on March 1, following a 130-year-old tenure. Originally, owner Karen King had told the New York Post that the last day in operation was March 5, however, she closed the shop down earlier than planned this week and announced Alleva Dairy would be moving to New Jersey.