LITTLE ITALY, Manhattan (PIX11) – A beloved 130-year-old cheese shop in Little Italy will soon be closing after the pandemic forced the owner to file for bankruptcy a few months ago.

Alleva Dairy, located at the corner of Mulberry and Grand streets, will shutter on March 5, according to a store announcement. The oldest cheese store in America is owned by Karen King and is known for its imported Italian cheeses, like fresh mozzarella and ricotta, the announcement said.

“I was really hoping that this day would never come and it’s a sad one,” King said in a statement. “I have plans to open a new location and continue the Alleva legacy. I want to thank everyone for their love and support.”

But like many small businesses, the pandemic drained the store financially. The owner filed for bankruptcy in September. King said she worked out a deal with the landlord and agreed to vacate the store next month.

“COVID-19 still continues to show no mercy,” the announcement said. “For the past two years, dozens of businesses in Little Italy have closed permanently. Dozens more are hanging by a thread.”