On Sunday night, Upper West Side institution Big Nick's flipped its last burger, ending a 50-plus year tenure serving a dedicated following of fans from the neighborhood and beyond. Filmmaker Dave Mack was on hand for the tearful goodbye and created a touching and fitting film farewell to the longtime restaurant.
Soundtracked to "Melancholy Serenade" by native son Jackie Gleason, the film captures the layers of history, painted out in grease stains, framed pictures and multitudes of menus. Owner Nick Imirziades speaks to regulars with the dazed expression, taking in the scene for one last time.
Even if you never set foot in the restaurant, you'll feel the melancholy pang as another piece of New York City's soul fades into memory.
The Last Night at Big Nick's from FranBro Productions on Vimeo.
Grub Street has another video from the final night, and The New Yorker published this touching encomium.