[Photo yesterday by Riley McCormick]
Word started circulating yesterday afternoon that Avenue A mainstay Benny's Burritos is closing after Saturday.
However, fans of Benny's Mexicali food here at East Sixth Street will still be able to order it via a to-go storefront that workers have been carving out of the existing corner restaurant and D-Lish Pita next door...
We haven't heard any official word about the closure from management just yet. Apparently Benny's had been struggling lately to make it work here. Employees received the news about the closing yesterday.
Benny's opened in the East Village in 1988... and is the latest comfortable spot to close along Avenue A ... joining 7A and the Odessa Cafe and Bar, among others.
Updated 2:43 p.m.
Lisha Arino at DNAinfo talked with owner Mark Merker about the closure.
“The world has changed,” said Merker, who opened Benny’s in late 1988.
The restaurant has had trouble staying afloat, as costs and rents rose while competition increased from Chipotle and other restaurants that served burritos, Merker said.
“It’s actually been pretty good, that’s the killer,” he said. “I would say that our traffic has been pretty consistent for the past four [or] five years, but that’s a problem. With rising costs, you need more business. It’s just the way things are going.”
The take-out space will include a few tables for diners, he said.
Updated 2:55 p.m.
EVG reader Riian Kant-McCormick notes that workers are currently loading a truck with scrap metal and equipment from Benny's...