2175 Broadway at 77th Street
Big Nick's was an UWS institution from 1962 through July 28, 2013. The burger and pizza joint with a 27-page menu was one of 15 restaurants owned over the years by Nick Imirziades. It was always a noisy and "cramped mismatch of counters and tables," with walls featuring headshots of stars that never were. And it was a great place to get a burger or Thanksgiving dinner at a reasonable price - 23 hours a day. Another Big Nick's on 71st street retained Imirziades' name, but had been sold by him in 1986.
Big Nick's had been around for so long and had such an illusory quality of permanence that I never thought to get a decent photo of it until I popped back into town in 2014 and discovered it was gone. Facing a rent increase from $40K to $60K/month, a 71-year-old Imirziades had no choice but to close - which was an all too common refrain in the early decades of the neoliberal 21st century in NYC. (NY Times)
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