It's been a tough 2018 for Stillwater institutions.
First it was Smalley's, the decade-old Caribbean barbecue joint known for serving up some of the finest jerk chicken anywhere in the country.
This month, it's the much-older Brine's, which shuttered last week after nearly 60 years at 219 S. Main St.
No landlord dispute, unlike the Smalley's situation -- the Pioneer Press reported that at 61, manager Gerry Brine simply wanted to step away to do something else with his life, and no one else in the family felt like taking over. Unsurprisingly, he described the decision to close the downtown Stillwater favorite as a bittersweet one.
It's not all bad, though. You can still get fresh-baked bread and deli meats and delicious sandwiches that combine the two at Brine's Deli and Market: 1790 Washington Ave. S., Stillwater. And while Brine couldn't tell the PiPress who's taking over just yet, it sounds like the historic 140-year-old building will remain a bar and restaurant. So at least there's that!