Just a year after opening, it appears the legally-embattled Mercadito Counter has reached the end of the road. Crain’s is reporting that the River North spot, which launched in August 2014, is closing its doors. The restaurant was Mercadito Hospitality’s attempt at attracting the fast-casual crowd looking for a cheap bite. The menu featured twists on American comfort food and offered items such as hot dogs, burgers and burritos in addition to a variety of tacos.
Unlike its popular sibling Mercadito, the "Mexican deli" was Chef Patricio Sandoval’s take on the corner stores found in his hometown of Acapulco. Unfortunately, it seems the concept will be short-lived as it’s failed to garner the support that’s made Mercadito a hotspot. No word on what’s coming next but the space is currently listed for sale with real estate agency Sperry Van Ness. It likely won’t be too long though before there’s a buyer; the River North boom shows no signs of slowing down any time soon.
Mercadito Counter was also the subject of five lawsuits. Three were filed in December 2014, and one in March, when Mercadito didn't respond to the summons. The latest one in April involved Z Bakery, and Mercadito wasn't present during the judgment, which awarded $1,680.37 to the plaintiff.
[UPDATE: A Mercadito representative says Mercadito Counter isn't closing.]