MANHATTAN – New York will break your heart. Six words were all one man needed to perfectly capture that feeling when you find out yet another neighborhood institution has closed. This time, it’s The New Amity Restaurant saying goodbye to neighbors after more than four decades on the Upper East Side.
“The New Amity coffee shop suddenly closes, robbing the Upper East Side of one more much needed hearth for the heart,” tweeted Adam Gopnick, a writer for The New Yorker, sharing a message posted at shuttered restaurant, located at 1134 Madison Avenue between East 84th and 85th Streets.
“It has been our joy to serve this community for the past 45 years,” reads the note from The New Amity Restaurant’s team taped to the front window.
“We thank you for your years of friendship and support,” it goes on to say.
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That message, behind the storefront’s metal roll down gate, is the only sign left of the beloved neighborhood diner that can be seen from the outside.
After serving comfort food to Upper East Siders for decades, the restaurant’s last day was Memorial Day, May 31st, according to the note.
The burgundy fabric awning with the diner’s name written large in white letters is gone— stripped off the storefront. In its place, a large white sign with red letters was hung, reading ’space for rent.’
On the inside, the greenish vinyl booths remain empty and the giant sailboat mural is no longer the focal point for customers. Menus and a board displaying the daily specials are gone from the storefront’s window.
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Despite being closed for more than a week, there was some activity at the restaurant on Tuesday. The lights were on and a gallon of milk was sitting on a counter, as well as a copy of the New York Post from June 2nd.
However, no one was seen inside the eatery so we could not ask what happened after such a long, successful run on the Upper East Side.
Calls to the restaurant were met with a ‘disconnected number’ recording, while attempts to reach the owners were unsuccessful.
“Not having even said goodbye to the fine owner and sweet staff,” Gopnick writes, reflecting on the unexpected closure of the neighborhood fixture, “We do now.”