The coronavirus pandemic is impacting the world like never before. New York City’s restaurants and bars have taken an astronomical hit as the city, nation and the world faces the impacts of COVID-19. Small businesses had to quickly adapt to a takeout and delivery model, with little guidance or financial stability. The federal Paycheck Protection Program loans were more difficult for restaurants and bars to obtain, as the business model relies more on part-time employees than full-time employees on payroll, which the loan program is geared toward.
With Mayor de Blasio anticipating that restaurants will only be able to open up to 50% capacity by Labor Day, the strain on the city’s local restaurants and bars may become too much to bear. Already, more than a dozen eateries have shut their doors permanently or have announced plans to relocate due to economic stress and high utility costs. Here is our guide to the restaurants and bars that have closed in New York City already, from oldest to newest.
1. The Paris Cafe (Founded 1873)
Located in the Historic South Street Seaport, The Paris Cafe announced in early May that it would be closing its doors for the forseeable future. Opened in 1873, the cafe was one of New York’s oldest pubs, and it served a menu of traditional Irish and American rustic fare with an emphasis on seafood. The restaurant also claims to have served famous patrons like Theodore Roosevelt and Buffalo Bill Cody. With views of the Brooklyn Bridge and with 12 big screen televisions, The Paris Cafe was a destination for city-dwellers looking for a delicious dinner or a late night beer (until 4:00 a.m.).
The pub was originally a part of Meyers Hotel and Bar back when the area had a busy port and seafood scene. Although it could not survive the coronavirus, the pub did survive Hurricane Sandy, which flooded the eatery to its ceiling after its front doors were blown away. The pub opened seven months later after extreme repairs and went back to serving popular dishes like Paris Mixed Seafood Chowder and Irish Shepherd’s Pie. The Paris Cafe was also well-known for its seafood selections like fish & chips and seafood stew in a tomato broth.
“Through no fault of anyone but the outbreak of this virus we are unable to forge a way forward that makes economic sense,” owner Pete O’Connell wrote on Facebook. “We had no option but to close our doors. Hope springs eternal and perhaps with a change in the economic climate we may find our way back.”