ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – It has been one week since Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham announced restaurants around the state would be limited to take out and delivery. Local eateries said that has been financially crippling.
Restaurants that have been considered staples in Albuquerque for decades said they are not sure how much longer their businesses can last. Garcia’s Kitchen, which has six locations across town, has lost 75% of its business.
While the dining portions of their restaurants are closed, they are doing deliveries through a few apps as well as pick up orders and taking food out to cars so people don’t have to go inside.
Vice President Dan Garcia said each location does anywhere between 50 and 100 pickups per day, which he said is hardly enough to pay the existing employees. He said they are barely surviving.
“We could possibly close one location so the others could get more business but right now, we are trying to stay open even if we are not making a profit just to turn the money to help pay some of the employees,” Garcia said.
It is the same story at Church Street Cafe in Old Town. Owner Marie Coleman said income has dropped more than 95% and she has had to lay off all but four of her employees.
Church Street is doing deliveries and pickups too. Coleman said since the restaurant is known for dining in, they are not getting enough orders to bring back staff.
“I am not sure how long we can hold on,” Coleman said. “We are trying to hold on until at least she [Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham] releases it, but even after she puts us back into business, it is not going to be the same.”
The governor’s order lasts until April 10. Garcia added that their catering arm also has zero business as gatherings larger than five are currently banned. Another idea to support local restaurants is buying a gift card for you or someone else to use at a later time.
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