Tom Bergin's, the almost 80-year-old House of Irish coffee and all-around Los Angeles institution, which they took over in 2011, will close its doors on Sunday. Word came down via Facebook late Wednesday night, just before the long July 4th weekend. "We are sorry to let everyone know that this Sunday will be Tom Bergin's last day of business," was the first post.
And then came more: "The current management team is actively seeking a buyer with the intention of preserving this historic property intact. Once doors close on Sunday, every fixture, every shamrock, will remain untouched until an appropriate operator steps forward to purchase the property. While Bergin's is a widely beloved landmark, a sluggish economy and insufficient sales made it difficult to sustain as a business. We are proud of our staff for working so hard this past year, and will miss the regular patrons who have made Tom Bergin's a Los Angeles institution for the past 80 years." Fans are not pleased.
Ebbink and the current management group, which also owns Dominick's, Little Dom's and 101 Coffee Shop, closed Tom Bergin's in 2011 for a complete overhaul, which many feared would involve huge sweeping changes, and reopened about a year ago. There were subtle upgrades, with the look and vibe of the Fairfax bar and restaurant mostly intact - years of shamrocks remained stapled to the ceiling and walls, the Irish coffee was the same, a few bartenders who've been there forever were still pouring whiskey and telling tales. The menu changed, however, as did prices; the crowds, at least it seemed, still filled the space. So what happened?
No word from the current owners other than what was posted. Hopefully a new owner will step up and keep the longstanding spot open. It would be a shame to lose it forever.
You have till Sunday for your Irish coffees and, more appropriate for this weather, Sheridan's Specials, or just a shot and a pint. We'll keep you posted on any new developments.