STORIED NEW YORK DIVE BAR CALLS IT QUITS AFTER 68 YEARS

In this weekly column, Eater documents the city’s permanent restaurant and bar closures. If a restaurant or bar has closed in your neighborhood, let us know at [email protected].

June 28

Chelsea: The grates are down and a “for rent” sign is up: Billymark’s West, a decades-old dive, has closed. The storied venue opened in Chelsea in 1956. Since 1999, it has been under the supervision of brothers Mark and Billy Penza, who keep its lights on from 8 a.m. to 4 a.m., 365 days a year. Not much changed when the Penzas took over two decades ago: They cleaned up some graffiti and repainted the bathroom, but the decor — the photos of the Beatles, the boxing gloves, the headshot of Elvis Costello — stayed the same. At one point, the owners of the West Village pub McKenna’s had proposed taking over Billymark’s West and making it “a bit more aesthetically pleasing.” It’s not clear if those plans are current. 332 Ninth Avenue, at West 29th Street

East Village: It was another big week of closures for the East Village. Dhom, serving food from Laos, closed this week after two years. Nick Bradley, an owner, blamed credit card fees, point-of-service apps, rising insurance premiums, and other issues tied to inflation. “Running a restaurant is a different ballgame post-COVID,” he says. Dhom was a follow-up to Khe-Yo, a Tribeca restaurant that also closed this week. 505 E. 12th Street, at Avenue A

East Village: Ise, a decades-old Japanese restaurant, will close after service on Friday, according to a note on its website. It’s been open in Cooper Square since 2014. Before that, it operated in the Financial District for 26 years. 63 Cooper Square, between Seventh Street and St. Marks Place

East Village: Portuguese egg tart chain Joey Bats has closed its East Village location, open since 2021. EV Grieve spotted owner Joey Batista removing signage from the storefront. There are other locations in Essex Market, Chelsea Market, and Grand Central Terminal. 50 Avenue B, between Third and Fourth streets

East Village: M and J Asian Cuisine closed this week after a decade. The takeout restaurant and sushi bar announced the closure with a note on the front door, reports EV Grieve. It opened in 2014. 600 E. 14th Street, at Avenue B

Tribeca: Khe-Yo, from celebrity chef Marc Forgione, closed this week. “We would like to thank all the guests, employees, purveyors, family members, and everyone else who ever touched Khe-Yo in some way over the last 11 amazing years,” Forgione said in a statement with partner Soulayphet “Phet” Schwader. When Khe-Yo opened in 2013, it was one of the few places known for Lao food in New York. The opening menu had bamboo-grilled quail, lemongrass sausage, and whole pig head. 157 Duane Street, near West Broadway

June 21

Astoria: Pizza X, known for putting huitlacoche and birria on pizza, has closed, according to an announcement on Instagram. Since July 2023, owner Javier Román has operated from a small stall he subleased from an Astoria market, called H Lopez. He closed in June to open a freestanding pizzeria in Prospect Lefferts Gardens. It opens later this month. 30-72 Steinway Street, near 31st Avenue

Chinatown: If you never tried the blossom chicken at Hakka Cuisine, you missed it: Last week, the Chinatown restaurant closed for good, according to a note on its website. Wade Li, the restaurant’s owner, grew up in Huizhou, outside of Hong Kong. He opened Hakka Cuisine in September 2022 to remind him of home, and nabbed several recognitions, including a two-star review from the New York Times, and a “best bird in town” declaration from Grub Street. 11 Division Street, near Bowery

East Village: Miami-born taqueria Tacos El Porky closed at the start of June over a dispute with its neighbors. “We leased the space because it had a backyard,” says owner Frank Neri. He planned to host food events in the outdoor space, but soon after his restaurant opened last year, complaints about noise and other issues rolled in. The backyard was unusable. “We were losing money,” Neri says, “so we decided to close.” Before Tacos El Porky, Neri ran another taqueria at the same address. 151 Avenue A, between Ninth and 10th streets

Flatiron: The ornate restaurant inside the Fotografiska photography museum closed on June 15, according to an announcement on the museum’s website. (The museum is moving to a larger space.) Verōnika opened in 2020 with help from prolific restaurateur, Stephen Starr. It scored a two-star review shortly after it opened, with critic Ryan Sutton calling it “impossible-to-get-into” and “occasionally excellent.” Verōnika closed during the pandemic and reopened without Starr in 2022. 281 Park Avenue South at 22nd Street

Upper East Side: Gerry’s Place, a year-old Irish bar, has closed due to “rising costs.” The pub was the off-shoot of a Norwood, New Jersey, restaurant that has been open since 2017. The Manhattan location opened in March 2023 and replaced another Irish bar, O’Flanagan’s, which had closed a week earlier. 664 Third Avenue, between 93rd and 94th streets

June 14

Columbus Circle: One of the pioneering sushi restaurants in the city, Fuji Sushi, open since 1954, closed on April 27 due to its lease ending. The website frames itself as “an old relic with a modern twist.” A note posted on the door thanked customers for their support over the years. 238 West 56th Street, between Broadway and Eighth Avenue

East Village: Ace’s, not to be confused with Ace Bar, also in the East Village, has closed. A Marshal’s notice on the door says the landlord has taken possession of the property, according to EV Grieve. Owner Mike Dollaway previously worked at the Mercer Kitchen and other Jean-Georges Vongerichten restaurants. He opened Ace’s in 2022. 197 Second Avenue, near East 12th Street

East Village: Roast duck shop Hay Hay Roasted has closed its East Village location after six months. “Despite our best efforts, this decision, though difficult, reflects our commitment to adapt and thrive,” the business shared on Instagram. The last day was May 28. The original restaurant opened on Mott Street in Manhattan’s Chinatown in 2021. 167 First Avenue, near East 10th Street

Greenwich Village: Mexican restaurant chain Dos Caminos closed in Greenwich Village at the end of May “to make way for a new concept,” according to a spokesperson. The chain has other locations in Times Square, the Meatpacking District, Midtown East, and Atlantic City, New Jersey. Dos Caminos is one of several brands run by Landry’s, the Texas-based company behind Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. and Morton’s Steakhouse. 475 W. Broadway, at West Houston Street

Hell’s Kitchen: Chinese restaurant Mee Noodle Shop has closed, according to an announcement online: “We are heartbroken to say goodbye but we hope we will be back in this neighborhood as we actively looking for a new location.” The noodle shop has been open since 1996, according to its website. 795 Ninth Avenue, West 53rd Street

Hudson Yards: Dumpling bar Hidden Leaf has closed in Hudson Yards. Josh Cohen, who was involved in Chez Ma Tante and Lilia, opened the restaurant in the Midnight Theatre performance venue in 2022. It has been replaced by Midnight by Navarro’s, a wine bar. 75 Manhattan West Plaza, between Ninth and Tenth avenues

Midtown: Voilà Afrique, a counter-service West African restaurant, closed earlier this year. The space has been vacated, and the most recent online reviews are from February. Owner George Quainoo, from Ghana, and chef Margarete Duncan, from Nigeria, opened Voilà Afrique in 2020: They chose the name because it “sounded sophisticated.” They have since opened a catering company based in New Jersey. 844 Second Avenue, at East 45th Street

Williamsburg: After raising thousands of dollars to stay open, dog-friendly cafe Boris & Horton has closed in Brooklyn. “Despite our best efforts, sales have just been too weak to support the store,” owners Logan Mikhly and Coppy Holzman shared on Instagram. The closure comes after Mikhly and Holzman raised $250,000 to save their two cafes: The money was used to pay employees and repair their East Village location, which will stay open. 510 Driggs Avenue, at North Ninth Street

June 7

Flatiron: Singaporean restaurant Laut Singapura closes this week after five years. No reason was provided for the closure. The owner, Salil Meta, runs several Southeast Asian restaurants in town, including Laut, Wau, and Kanyakumari, which opened earlier this year. Singapura, open since 2019, was the only few spots to serve “must-get” Singaporean foods, like chile crab and roti prata. 31 E. 20th Street, between Park Avenue South and Broadway

Lower East Side: Two-year-old Korean snack shop Chick of Us has closed. On Friday, workers were seen removing furniture from the building. The small restaurant turned popular street foods — potato “tornadoes,” skewers with rice cake and sausage — into viral snacks. 205 Allen Street, near East Houston Street

Soho: Northern Italian restaurant Osteria Morini from the Altamarea Group closed on June 1 after 14 years: The business will be moving to a new location at a to-be-announced address. Celebrity chef Michael White opened Osteria Morini in 2010, although he hasn’t been involved since 2021. At the time of the opening, Eater wrote that the “rustic trattoria” was built by “scouring Italian markets” and “old properties.” 218 Lafayette Street, near Spring Street

Washington Heights: Vegan Quick Bites, known for vegan Dominican food, has closed its original location. Owners Blenlly Mena and Javier Saba wrote on Instagram that sales were “not enough to cover the expenses required to keep the business running.” Mena and Saba started the vegan food business in 2021 as Next Stop Vegan; they rebranded as Vegan Quick Bites earlier this year. There is another location in Downtown Brooklyn and one opening soon in Greenpoint. 1636 St Nicholas Avenue, at West 192nd Street

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