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Health Department Shutters Brown Cup Cafe

By Meredith Hoffman

DNAinfo Reporter/Producer

CHELSEA — The Brown Cup Cafe has been shut down — at least twice — for operating without a health permit, the Health Department said.

The eatery at 334 Eighth Avenue was closed on Friday, and tried to reopen on Tuesday but was re-closed, the DOH said. The store reopened again around 1 p.m. on Wednesday.

The New York City Health Department confirmed that it closed the cafe Friday for operating with an expired permit, and said inspectors said the cafe was shut again on Tuesday after reopening without permission. The cafe passed a DOH inspection, but was not supposed to reopen until it renewed its permit with the Department of Consumer Affairs, officials said.

"The cafe [was] open in violation of the Commissioner’s order, so it was reclosed," the DOH wrote in an email. "Another reopening inspection is scheduled."

Don Han, manager of Brown Cup, who was present in the cafe on Tuesday, told DNAinfo that the restaurant had no health issues, but confirmed that the permit was expired. He did not say how long the permit had been expired prior to the closure, nor did he comment on the cafe's attempted reopening.

Han said Tuesday that he hoped "to reopen tomorrow."

Bruce Goldman, a resident of Penn South housing complex down the street, called the store "immaculate" and "one of the best" in the neighborhood.

"I eat here every day," said Goldman. "They missed out on business on the 4th of July — the streets were packed."