A tribute to 500 places that defined New York City and have now closed forever

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2020/12/08/a-tribute-to-500-places-that-defined-new-york-city-and-have-now-closed-forever.html

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The picture sure looks like one I could happily live without, but it’s always important to remember when reporting on things like this that:

It didn’t have to be like this.

This is because we couldn’t be fucked to take action to control the virus, and when forced to do so couldn’t be fucked to do it properly, or to pay the (what now is a pittance) to offset the economic damage.


We NYers – former and current, same diff – all have our places on this list. Mine are:

Chumley’s – Restaurant, Greenwich Village, 1922

Copacabana – Nightclub, Times Square, 1940

The Cupping Room Cafe – Restaurant, Soho, 1977

Hop Shing – Restaurant, Chinatown, 1977

Ipanema – Restaurant, Midtown, 1979

Gotham Bar and Grill – Restaurant, Greenwich Village, 1984

Aureole – Restaurant, Times Square, 1988

Lucky Strike – Restaurant, Soho, 1989

Max Fish --Bar, Lower East Side, 1989

Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre – Comedy Club, Chelsea, 1990

Odessa – Diner, East Village, 1994

Jazz Standard – Jazz Club, Chelsea, 1997

Tom’s Delicious Pizza – Restaurant, Upper West Side, 1998

Fresh Tortillas – Restaurant, Inwood, ca. 2000

[the list is by date opened, which is a great way to order things]

One spot of good news in all this misery: 2 weeks ago my regular barbershop there got saved from the axe.


Here in Austin quite a few great places have closed. One of my fave pizza places that was near the university closed its doors due to their foot traffic going down to zero and i’m afraid that the nearby Brazilian + Taco Shop and the pub around the corner will all end up closing. My one comfort at least is that my favorite mexican food truck is still going strong. I haven’t been to it to eat since March but i swung by to talk to the owner recently just to say hi.

It’s sad to see so many loved institutions close their doors down for good this year and it’s all just been utterly pointless. Had the politics around the quarantine been less bullshit this would not be happening :frowning:


Wait, go back. The gallery that trusted you to build a cloud??

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This is happening in every big city. Maybe it’s always been going on, or maybe the corporatization and monetization of the world is speeding up and wrecking old time family-owned establishments.


You’re gonna hate me for this: a few years ago, I lived right around the corner from there, but I never went in. I’m not sure why I didn’t. Now I feel terrible about it.

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Honestly, I mainly went in because of the name. How do you not try his Delicious Pizza?

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It’s really important right now: If you have a favorite place, throw them a few bucks, even if you can’t eat there right now. Get some to go; see if you can get a gift card, buy some merch… something.

We’re going to loose so many businesses because the idiots who thought loosing 100% of revenue for 3-4 weeks was worse for small businesses than losing 50-75% of their revenue for 18 months… or, because that’s the excuse they gave for not pulling up their big kid panties up and doing the right thing.


Definitely agree on ordering take-out if available. Most of the restaurants here in the Bay Area offer take-out options. Especially down here on the the southern end.
Also if you do order take-out go ahead and tip too. Helps whatever wait staff are working.


We do this, of course, but the thing is, most of these places operate on modest margins in good times. Now a very large chunk of their clientele are either unemployed or need to be saving in case they lose their jobs, and of course groceries themselves are going up in price.


Last time I was in NYC, I went into the Gem Spa to try an egg cream but couldn’t figure out how to ask for one (a confusing little store, to me anyway). Sorry I missed it but, frankly, the Lower East Side hasn’t been the same since Ratner’s (the restaurant AND most especially the bakery) closed.

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