Ice Cream by Mike, a longtime Ridgewood, New Jersey, ice cream shop, has scooped its last cone.
The small business closed its doors this summer.
"We just didn't have enough business," owner Mike Elias told Northjersey.com, adding, "I really thought that if I built it, they would come."
Many fans of Ice Cream by Mike shared their dismay on social media.
"I live in Connecticut and when we visit our friends in [New Jersey], my one 'demand' is that we go to Ice Cream by Mike," said a Facebook commenter.
"Seriously," the person continued, "I can't say enough about how delicious it is and what a fantastic variety of flavors" the shop offered.
Elias is a technology engineer with Dun & Bradstreet, noted Northjersey.com, but opened the shop seven years ago because he "thought it would be fun."
The ice cream market as a whole is robust; the category is estimated to "acquire a size of over $122 million by the end of 2030," according to Globenewswire.com.
Elias shared the news of his shop's closure on his business's Facebook page.
"What’s wrong with this picture?" Elias wrote in the post, showing a photo of the empty ice cream shop.
"It’s time to call it a wrap," his post continued. "After 7 years (3 in Hackensack and 4 in Ridgewood), we have not turned a profit," he said.
"I had the ‘Field of Dreams’ mentality. ‘Build it and they shall come,’" he continued in the post.
"Not enough came," he explained. "I am deeply saddened. Unless there is a patron out there who wants to support my art, we have no choice."
Noting that there was a "bright side," Elias also noted that his daughter began her own business after "working and learning with me."
"And that’s a home run," he said.
Sharing that after an expensive sushi dinner recently, his daughter told him, "I got this, Dad," when the check came, Eliot also said in his post, "What a feeling to know your kid has found their way. I am deeply proud of her. Love u Dylan."
A former small business owner in Iowa who once owned a string of restaurants echoed the statements of the ice cream shop owner.
"It’s just so hard to keep a small business afloat, and the hours never end," he told Fox News Digital.
"Today," he continued, "with recession and inflation on the heels of two years of the COVID lockdowns, I would say it’s mighty hard to see the upside in continuing even if you're breaking even — it's just too precarious out there."
An ice cream artisan, Elias used "top-notch ingredients for his treat, including imported-from-Italy pure pistachio paste, sweet Tahitian vanilla beans and prized Valrhona chocolate from France," Northjersey.com reported.
Fans of Ice Cream by Mike lamented the shuttering of the business.
"Don't give up. Just find a better place!"
"This is such horrible news," wrote one commenter on Facebook. "I am so saddened when a place like yours just doesn’t have the appreciation and support from the community of such an amazing art and skill of quality ice cream …"
Yet another thought the problem might have been where the shop was located.
"Mike, your ice cream is delicious, but the issue is the location," they posted.
"Ridgewood has too many ice cream places ... Don't give up. Just find a better place!"
"Always on the ‘best of’ lists," wrote another. "Clearly COVID didn’t help … Wish it worked out the way you had hoped," another commenter wrote.
Elias told Northjersey.com that a lack of business might have been due to the parking situation — "it was difficult to find parking," he said — or that the shop suffered from the lack of an awning promoting itself.
Closing the shop is "sad," he told the outlet. "It's depressing."
But Elias said he was happy for his daughter. "She's killing it," he said to the outlet of his daughter's business, "Plated by D," a charcuterie board spot in Lodi, N.J.
"Thank you again for everyone who has supported our dreams and we hope we made some beautiful memories," the shop shared on its Facebook post.