A pair of high-profile Manhattan dining institutions filed for bankruptcy in recent days. Café des Artistes, an Upper West Side classic, made its filing this week after closing its doors last month. The restaurant had been open since 1917 and is well known for its murals and protracted meals.
A few blocks away, Tavern on the Green filed for bankruptcy as well, although its current owner promises to continue operations until the end of the year. Unlike Café des Artistes, which has closed for good, Tavern's operating license has been sold to another operator, who takes over in 2010.
The pair are the latest casualties in a difficult year for restaurants; several notable high-end eateries, including La Goulue and Payard, closed in recent months. The Bloomberg article linked above notes New York's restaurant industry, an integral part of its social and economic infrastructure, has declined 11 percent this year.