UPPER EAST SIDE, NY — Another quintessential New York City diner bites the dust.

Neil’s Coffee Shop has occupied the corner of East 70th Street and Lexington Avenue since 1940, but this week it finally closed after years of court and legal proceedings related to around $1 million in unpaid rent.

And just two months before the eviction on Tuesday, the diner’s longtime owner of over 40 years, Christo Kaloudis, passed away.

Find out what's happening in Upper East Sidewith free, real-time updates from Patch.

The diner was a longtime favorite of Upper East Side greasy spoon aficionados, old-timers and hungry Hunter College students.

“So sad,” said one woman as she passed by the diner on Thursday afternoon.

Find out what's happening in Upper East Sidewith free, real-time updates from Patch.

“R.I.P., courtesy of the Marshal,” said another with a group of friends.

In 2017, Grub Street photographed Neil’s counter covered with exactly 50 items from their menu.

Kaloudis told the foodie site back then that the coffee shop went through 30 pounds of ground beef every day for their 22 different hamburger variations.

Even back then, the longtime owner told the site that rising food prices were making profits elusive.

“We have low prices here. I never raise them!” Kaloudis told Grub Street.

And since 2017, the dark clouds of eviction have hung over Neil’s’ head when the landlord of 961 Lexington Ave. first filed a claim against the Upper East Side landmark for $287, 286 in unpaid rent.

Click Here: rapid prototyping

According to a lease included in the court documents, their annual rent in 2017 was $302, 400, or $25,000 per month.

Court documents show that Neil’s debt to its landlord grew over the years as the diner agreed in multiple settlements to various repayment schemes.

In 2018, the landlords pursued and were granted an eviction for payment, according to documents stemming from Neil’s first bankruptcy filing in 2016, when its debts were still less than $100,000.

The warrant was held off by the series of repayment plans, which found Neil’s in default a number of times.

According to court records, their rental arrears reached $903,117 in late 2021.

But the 84-year-old greasy spoon just couldn’t keep up. Those repayments, and the regular rent, faltered again starting in 2019 until Kaloudis filed for bankruptcy one last time in September, claiming $844,000 in debt.

The final amount owed, according to bankruptcy court documents from February, topped around $1 million dollars.

In late February, landlord successfully dismissed the bankruptcy proceedings in the wake of Kaloudis’ Jan. 3 death and on Tuesday, a Marshal’s notice was issued, now on display in the institution’s front window.

The death of the old-school New York City diner is a too common story, but if you want to find a new-school diner to sip an egg cream in, the New York Times published a list last month that should have diner fans feeling hopeful.

Get more local news delivered straight to your inbox. Sign up for free Patch newsletters and alerts.