April 26, 2016 Staff Report
An Astoria restaurant will close its doors after five years in the neighborhood.
Bear, a Russian restaurant located at 12-14 31st Ave., will close for good at the end of the month, the restaurant announced on Facebook on Friday. Bear will host a “blast-off” party on Thursday.
The lease on the space is coming to an end, and the owners have decided not to renew it, co-owner Sasha Salona wrote in the post. Salona said that they did not make this decision due to a struggling business, but rather to take a break from the challenging task of running a restaurant.
“Ask anyone who is a restaurateur and they will tell you, when you own a restaurant it becomes your life,” the post reads. “We feel that after five years a nice break is not too much to ask.”
Despite the closing, the post states that Salona is proud of what was accomplished at Bear, especially operating a kitchen with a female Executive Chef.
Chef Natasha Pogrebinsky successfully ran the kitchen in a “male-dominated world,” which at times was difficult, according to the post.
Porgrebinsky has appeared on the Food Network’s “Chopped” multiple times.
Salona also wrote a goodbye to the restaurant’s customers.
“It’s not a tragic goodbye – but it is a goodbye nonetheless. It’s life – everything good ends,” Salona wrote. “And it’s okay to be a little sad, that’s what makes us human.”
The owners could not be reached for comment.