Goodbye, Grand Canyon

My wife walked by Grand Canyon, 141 Montague Street, yesterday, and was dismayed to find it closed. She loved its burgers; our friend Edmund delighted in its turkey clubs. A sign taped to the door says, “Grand Canyon is CLOSING. We thank you for 32 years of support.” No word on why, other than a suggestion that it may have been an untenable rent increase. What else is new?

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  • Sen. Bob Forehead

    There was a time when this was about the only decent place to eat in this nabe. I will miss sitting outside with a pitcher of beer and some comfort food. Lots of good people worked there too, will miss them.

  • memeadjuster

    Yes, and they kept their prices very reasonable while portions were always very large.

  • GHB

    I’ll miss weekend breakfast at the counter. Always a nice, comfortable place to relax and get a decent meal. Do you know if their Park Slope location is still open?

  • MonroeOrange

    very much a shame…i would thought they possibly had owned the building, judging by how long they were there and the fact that in recent years, it wasn’t ever busy enough to support the rents.

  • A Neighbor

    The best cream of chicken soup — thick, lots of chicken — on Sunday in the wintertime. 😢

  • cat

    I thought that they had already settled the rent problem, but maybe not, the lease was up for renewal last year. It was a shock to see it closed, we eat (ate) there a lot. Great burgers. Walked by the other day and the owner and staff were clearing out stuff. The owner (we unfortunately never new his name), always happy to see us, said he wanted to retire. We’re going to miss everybody, especially Esther and David. Have known them for so long. Jimmy, another old time employee who now works at Custom House, was giving them a hand and told us that Go Burger (part of a chain of various types of restaurants) was moving in. (Oh good, dueling burger joints across the street from one another.) While Grand Canyon wasn’t exactly a gourmet restaurant, it was a comfortable and friendly place to go to grab a good, thick burger or a Tex/Mex omelette or a bowl of chili. One would always see familiar faces, often old timers like us, eating there on a regular basis. Now what do we do? Yet another piece of the “neighborhood” gone.

  • errrybodyrelax

    This place had the best bacon, egg, and cheese in the entire city. So sad.

  • Willow Street Watch

    We know several neighbors who ate there every day! One or two family members week there at least once a week for lunch.

    But when the news broke last week I stopped by. The staff was VERY BITTER..they said that the landlord was Doubling the rent from an already high figure. They couldn’t operate with that. Few people realize that a restaurant is a high effort for the amount of income type business.
    Its a hard buck. The canyon in its own way was a stabilizing force on BH’s main street. They had their regulars. Remember the violin and French horn couple? Remember the tall elderly lady who wore designer clothes, very distinguished? One regular said he worked for the Dodgers in the late 40’s to the early fifties. Nice people getting beaten up by the out-of-control RE market. I told one employee the story of the tulip craze in Holland. I also told him that all this is not going to stop until several big names in RE end up in jail….

  • Arch Stanton

    What would they go to jail for, increasing rent when a commercial lease has expired? Nothing illegal about that.

  • Willow Street Watch

    I think I’ll let the statement stand for the intelligent readers to consider and appreciate. Given what has gone on in the RE business that I know of, it’s one of the great moral and ethical voids. So are much of the funding source world.

    But I’ll tell you what…if I had my long standing business shot out from under me like that, first of all, I’d publicize the landlord’s name complete with his home phone number for community members to call and “comment” on his actions.

    And secondly, I’d SURE take like ten grand of my money and float a REWARD for information on corruption in the RE “industry,”

    Just because they destroyed my financial life and the lives of my workers, I’d want to see some justice for an out of control sector.

    That’s the way it would be done, by the way, in the say, pre 1975
    real America. When our country was more healthy and vital, strong
    civic action was standardly taken against destructive or even ques-
    tionable sectors in society. (Imagine someone trying to invent the
    dirivatives prior to 1970. What would have happend?)

    Oh, all the casino-oids (like someone we know,) don’t like all of this
    pointed out? Make the most of it guys…

  • StudioBrooklyn

    Yes, we intelligent readers consider and appreciate, like a well-translated Chekhov novel or a particularly rare Bordeaux vintage, the subtle notes and multifaceted nuance of the implication that landowners should simply be thrown swiftly into prison at the whim of our neighborly sentimentality.

    Too bad Arch Stanton is too much of a lay philistine to really get this. Well, not everyone is lucky enough to have been born geniuses like us, eh WSW?

  • Willow Street Watch

    First, my observations were not aimed at a specific landlord or management group. After all I do not know the exact particulars of the lease involved. But I do know that what employees of the business involved told me is the EXACT complaint/cry for help I have heard from dozens of stable responsible commercial Tennant’s, mostly retail who’s long standing concerns were being destroyed or has been destroyed by ever escalating rents driven not by operating costs but by the ever escallating RE tulip craze which by the way, is being driven by one world policies like visas for $$$
    and largely no questions asked foreign investment. RE trusts and condos are the new swiss bank accounts.

    TAKE a small look at the Village. How many non cooperate or tax loss retails remain??

    A city or nation run by not by the honest and the productive but by the “financial types” will ALWAYS spiral down.

    You know, it wasn’t restauranteurs that our lord changed out of the temple….

  • washashoreedgartown

    As someone who grew up in the Heights I have to say that all these places displaced another place that was adored and will be missed. This is the nature of New York. If you want continuity then you’re in the wrong city. New York has always been about making money and money MOVES.

  • Arch Stanton

    Yep, Grand Canyon replaced “My Little Chickadees” I grilled chicken joint, before that it was a place called “The Hamburger Stop”.

  • ShinyNewHandle

    Ah, the days of the telegraph.

  • Arch Stanton

    Correct, there was a Western Union across the street.

  • ShinyNewHandle

    …in case you had to eat & dash…

  • Willow Street Watch

    While that sounds reasonable on the surface, it ignores the reality that New York like all great cities, at least in better days, was a city of long standing firms of all kinds which served the public and set reliable standards stan-
    dards of service. At one time you knew if you needed a medication for a family member or a household item or you wanted to buy a small appliance that there was a local merchant or larger store that had exactly what you needed and they were reliable (and the item was made here)
    No more…now you have to go on a hunt for the least questionable foreign made product sold at a store which which will give you the least argument if you have to return it. Remember the days of satisfaction guaranteed?
    Not in our new one world. And, if you wanted lunch or dinner you knew a couple of places where you always got what you wanted in a friendly atmosphere at a reasonable price. That’s what made the city.

    Now the line is that constant change is always good and the faster you move reference points the better. Really?

  • Willow Street Watch

    I remember when Western Union was on Pierrepont and Clinton in the St Ann’s (sic) prep building.

  • Arch Stanton

    More like, eat and send cash…

  • Arch Stanton

    I hate to play this card but will someone please call WSW a whambulance.

  • Arch Stanton

    Oh yeah things were so much better in 1975…LOL.

  • judifrancis

    That is not true about the rent. It was actually LOWERED to accommodate this long standing restaurant company! And the owner’s name was Frank.


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