There’s more to report today about the loss of two corner institutions: a manager at 7A confirms the rumor that the East Village all-nighter will close, and gives January 26 as the last day. According to the person we spoke to, who didn’t want to be named, business has been getting slower and slower in the last two and a half years, they’ve been in the red for some time and the owner wants to retire.
Meanwhile, at the corner where Gray’s Papaya stood proudly for 28 years, the tubs of Nature’s Own Revitalizer will soon be replaced by juice presses. That’s because Liquiteria is moving in, per Eater.
Nicholas Gray confirms with Fork in the Road what we heard from an employee yesterday: that a rent hike is to blame for the demise of the Sixth Avenue location. Specifically, a hike from $30,000 to $50,000.
Eater went whole-hog (whole-dog?) on Papaya coverage today, remembering the snappy signs, chatting with neighbors who of course blame Bloomberg, tapping everyone from Mario Batali to Big Gay Ice Cream’s Doug Quint for memories, and posting a eulogy by East Village food writer Robert Sietsema, who says, “The disappearance of such a well-known eatery — and a bargain one at that — diminishes our city immeasurably.”
True dat, though as Grub Street notes, there are still plenty of Papayas left — some more distinguished than others.
But needless to say, many New Yorkers are seeing these two developments as The End.
It is not a good time to be un-rich in G. Village: Gray’s Papaya shuttered today, my newsstand over weekend, Ray’s/Roio’s Pizza last Nov
— David Kamp (@MrKamp) January 8, 2014
Replacing Gray’s Papaya with Liquiteria should be a precise-yet-implausible metaphor for the changing NYC landscape, not ACTUAL REALITY.
— Helen Rosner (@hels) January 9, 2014
I was willing to live with the Velveeta shortage but now Gray’s Papaya in the Village is closing so somebody’ll have to talk me off a ledge.
— Tom Ceraulo (@tceraulo) January 8, 2014
— Anna deVries (@adevries18) January 8, 2014
7A CLOSING MEANS IT IS TIME FOR ME TO MOVE. FUCK YOU NYC! #imisstheoldNY
— Joevasion (@joevasion) January 9, 2014
News of Gray’s Papaya and 7A closing in the same day has got me heartbroken. #NYC
— Yoncé Paradigm (@ShanteParadigm) January 8, 2014
There’s only one Gray’s Papaya left in NYC and 7A is closing? New York wtf is going on since I been gone…??
— Brigitte Fritz (@FritzTitz) January 8, 2014
Additional reporting by Allyson Shiffman