End of an era: Hinsch’s is closed

End of an era: Hinsch’s is closed
File photo / Tom Callan

Hinsch’s, the legendary luncheonette and Brooklyn institution, whose neon sign, “Happy Days” decor, and greasy-spoon menu have changed little since it first opened in 1948, has served its last egg cream.

The old-school Fifth Avenue soda fountain between 86th and 85th streets is officially closed, according to owner John Logue.

“Basically my lease is up and that’s all,” said Logue, who declined to comment further.

Logue posted a sign announcing the closure on the store’s window on Thursday.

“Our lease is expiring and we decided not to renew it,” the note, signed “The Logue Family,” read. “Current economic conditions, customers changing eating patterns, and our desire to retire early have led us to this decision. We thank all of our customers for your business and appreciate your support and loyalty. We will miss serving you.”

The shop was one of the borough’s last-remaining authentic soda fountains — back when soda jerks were the baristas of their day and the Hula Hoop was the toy of choice.

Landlord Anna Tesoriero said that she was seeking rent of more than $10,000 a month from Logue or a deep-pocketed corporate client to take over the space —up from the $7,500 a month Hinsch’s was paying.

But Tesoriero said the sudden closure of the store surprised her.

“He didn’t tell me anything until he put the sign up,” she said. “He’s been in there so long and he wants to retire and his children are not interested in taking it over.”

Owner John Logue (background) served classic egg creams at Hinsch’s, an old-school soda fountain and diner between 85th and 86th streets, that went out of business on Friday.
FIle photo / Gregory P. Mango