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Two more Providence institutions bite the dust

In contrast to the fertile period from the late '90s and into the new decade -- when Nick-a-Nee's, the Wild Colonial, the Red Fez, the Decatur Lounge, and Lili Marlene's burst upon the Providence scene -- things have waned a bit n recent years.

Babe's closed. The Custom House closed. And we know all about the Decatur.

Now, good guy David Segal offers the news that Talk of the Town, a downtown Providence mainstay, will serve its last rounds on Wednesday night. I've heard some loose talk that TOTT might try to relocate in Olneyville.

The bar is being displaced by plans for a hotel. Last week, P+J offered their thoughts on New Japan, which is also being forced out by this development:

Sayonara to a wonderful place
P&J are greatly saddened by the imminent closing of one of our longtime favorite restaurants, the warm and inviting New Japan, which has been a staple in downtown Providence for 30 years.
 
Yukio Hiyama is closing shop at the end of October — when the building will be converted to (another) hotel. We’re not entirely sure what to make of the recent proliferation of downtown hotel projects, but we do know that there will never be another place like New Japan. When Yukio first opened, there was almost no Japanese cuisine in the state.
 
There was the Oki Steakhouse chain restaurant, but that was generic stuff. The sushi craze had not yet hit, and New Japan was a wondrous little spot with a small menu of great food and an atmosphere like home. Yukio has been one of the greatest hosts in local history. Jorge remembers accidentally leaving his wallet at home one evening and Yukio (who was much closer to Phillipe) told him, “Oh, just come by next time you’re in the neighborhood. No problem.”
 
New Japan was a favorite of the Young Adults back in the ’70s, when it was run by Yukio’s predecessor, the equally beloved and diminutive Beatles-song-singing Osaki. The band would often convene there, for a light meal and plenteous sake, before a gig at Lupo’s.
 
Your superior correspondents had many a fabulous lunch and dinner at New Japan, and we mourn its passing. We send all the best to Yukio, a true prince of a man.

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