Updated here. Updated 8/17: A new report suggests TJ's shut the store after learning employees wanted to unionize.
After 15 years at 138 E. 14th St. near Irving Place, the Trader Joe's Wine Shop – the only one in NYC (AND NEW YORK STATE) — shut down today.
A note on the door thanks patrons for the 15-plus years of business... and states that employees will be paid through Aug. 28. There is also a tease of "an even better wine shop experience"to come somehwhere ... post claims that employees received no warning of the closure.
Meanwhile, TJ wine shop fans are NOT pleased...
The Trader Joe's outpost next door remains open.
NYC TikTok is outraged that the Trader Joe’s wine store in Manhattan is closing pic.twitter.com/npdZsW9Gsv— Benjamin Goggin (@BenjaminGoggin) August 11, 2022
End of an era.
This isn’t just the only TJ wine shop in NYC — it’s the only one in *the entire state of New York.* This is due to a NYS law which prohibits one person or corporate entity from owning or operating more than one wine or liquor store. Curious to find out about the what/when/where of this “better wine shop experience.”
They can legally operate 1 wine store and this location just doesn't seem to be what it once was. The closure of 14th Street to vehicular traffic, coupled with the impact of Covid, has sapped a lot of the life out of the street. There are so many retail vacancies in the corridor from 3rd Ave to 8th Ave along 14th. The street is completely devoid of the energy it once had.
Who drove to the wine shop?? The closure of 14th st to traffic did not cause this store to close…
There's the Morton Williams liquor store on 23rd & 2nd, for what it's worth.
I drive there all the time to pick up a case. Easier than the bus and you can drive on 14th street so I just swing around the block and easy peasy
And all the NYU kids drink white claw ! So sad
"The closure of 14th Street to vehicular traffic" etc. "has sapped a lot of the life out of the street."
This line is bogus. The is zero proof to back this up. Anyone who walks on 14th between 1st Ave and 6th Ave like I do, sometimes 2-3 times a week, knows that's true. And FD, I have car and drive. In fact, improved SBS bus times has been a great plus to 14th Street commerce. Part of the problem of Union Square has been the usual story of big brick and mortar chain shores being slaughtered by E Commerce, the usual suspect and now waiting for Target to open. There are other factors as noted but this one, propagated by store owners/employees who used to park on 14th Street and feed meters, is again, bogus.
Another great example of excessive NY regulations.
Union busting. Staff had planned to ask for a vote to unionize. Corporate got wind of it and decided to close the store and let the staff go before they were formally notified. Closing the store after asking for a union vote is illegal, thus the immediate unannounced closure. Willing to close their only wine store in the state to prevent any union activity in their largest market.
If it "isn't what it once was," can someone tell me why the ridic lines persist?
I remember when the main store next door opened. I went the first day (first and only time the place wasn't slammed) and as I was walking down the street afterwards people kept coming up to me and demanding to know if there was a TJ's in town now.
Maybe they can reopen in the Steiner bldg.
It’s too bad you can’t just buy wine and beer in the grocery store like in other states.
The old Walgreens spot would be good for a new location.
Something is seriously wrong when there numerous weed dispensaries opening up and the only one Trader Joes Wine shop closes.
good wine for cheap is a good concept. wegman's, hello?
This is indeed an unwelcomed exit from a stable company providing a service in the neighborhood. The staff was friendly and welcoming and supplied a nice public restroom, too. Not a wine drinker much, but I was in there last week to use the facilities and was impressed with the ease, cleanliness, availability, and I thought, it's good to know of a clean bathroom in these parts. Of course, nyc changes in the blink of an eye. Union? I hope that's not true bc that's just shitty AF. They can and should unionize! Workers deserve rights and protections.
From where do you get that information? If true, verifiable, there are steps that can and should be taken to punish that behavior.
You actually can buy beer in grocery stores in NYC, which is why I find it really odd that you can not also buy wine there.
As long as they don't close down Trader Joe Foods I'm good.
14th Street is now great! So nice and quiet. Just a bus occasionally rattling by, and maybe a cop car. After dark, it reminds me of Charles Street in downtown Baltimore.
They can get in line behind all of the employees from Amazon and Starbucks suffering the same. Our government seems very concerned with helping them.
Darn what a TERRIFIC Bathroom they had there!
I love my local wine / liquor store on AVE B near 14th St and never set foot in the TJ's location. The one thing I must say about NYS in regards to how it controls these stores is that it benefits small independent stores, adds more variety of products and wine is chosen personally by the owner / manager of privately owned shops. I know this because I worked in a very good store on the upper east side in the 1980's for several years. Don't let national corporations own every facet of our lives. Small businesses is the only thing keeping this town interesting.
Imho, wine should be allowed to be sold everywhere where beer is sold!
Hard liqueuris a different story!
I drove there and the bus lane thing got me a ticket
Wine is technically considered liquor by the state so it’s subject to different laws than beer
These laws are absurd . It only benefits the store owner with higher prices, lack of selection, and lack of competition.
First the lovely Wine Shop on 3rd Ave by 10th street closes and now this? I am NOT going into Union Square wines and their ridiculous prices. Not looking for another "liquor store", where are there nice & reasonably priced wine shops nearby?
Just came back from 14th St. empty-handed. What a bummer! For what it's worth, there's a store on 1st Ave. between 22 and 23 Sts. called Liquor Up and Wine Down. They have an array of affordable wines (plus more expensive ones) along with weekly specials. The staff is nice and knowledgeable, so if you're in the neighborhood it's a good place to investigate.
Remember when they first opened and the grocery store employees were not allowed to acknowledge the wine store? I asked an employee if they sold wine and they just said, "no, sorry", but did not recommend the store next door, which was weird. They were not supposed to admit to any affiliation with the wine store. So bizarre. I'd love to know what that was all about.
Strange, because I can buy their flavored Prosecco or moscato wines in their other locations.
And I have friends who work in other shops, who are already unionized, so this is really weird.
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