ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – A local restaurant is finding new ways to drum up business, while also helping those less fortunate in our community. Like many other restaurants around New Mexico, Brixens in Downtown Albuquerque says it’s a struggle with business down, but it pushed them to come up with an alternative to indoor dining.

“When our guests are in here, we get to serve them, serve them the food right when it comes out of the kitchen, and now we’re not able to do that,” said Tanya Sanchez, owner, and chef at Brixens. “So we got creative and we thought, how can we give people an exciting, COVID-safe dining experience outside of our four walls but still provide hot food, fresh.”

The crew says they were inspired by childhood nights spent at the Albuquerque 6 drive-in theater. They decided to make their own version along Central Avenue.

“It was a really nuclear family experience,” said Sanchez. “We’d go, stay in our car, we’d eat our food, we’d eat our popcorn, watch the movie, all from the safety of our car and I thought if we could duplicate that and make something really fun for families outside of the home.”

The drive-in option is free for customers. It includes sanitized dining trays, along with a tablet and speaker connected to Netflix, brought out by servers. While checking out either in-person at the checkout window or online, customers can select “curbside drive-in” to get the experience.

It’s just one way the local restaurant hopes to bring in customers. They’re also running a holiday give back burger to get people coming in, while also giving back to others.

“2020 has been just a really rough year all the way around. When we were looking at what we’re going to do for the holidays, we decided to really focus on joy and what we could do to provide for families that are in need,” said Sanchez. “We decided to partner with PB&J Family Services. They’re an amazing charity that just does so much good over the holidays. This year, they’re sponsoring 203 families made up of 678 individuals that just need help and support to make the holidays special.”

Those who order the special can post a picture to social media, tagging Brixens and adding #BlizzardOfBlessings. The person posting will get a $10 gift certificate to use on a future visit and a $10 gift certificate will also go to a person in need through PB&J Family Services. Their hope is to also provide $25 gift certificates to those in need but would need 1,695 people to participate.

“It’s a lofty goal, one we hope to achieve, but if we can do that, we can give almost $34,000 back to the community this holiday season,” said Sanchez. “I’ve always thought that you can either focus on what’s going wrong, or you can find a way to turn around and focus on something positive. If you choose to focus on joy and figure out how to bring joy to other people’s lives, then hopefully it comes back to you.”

The Brixens Blizzard of Blessings project for PB&J Family Services will run through this Sunday, Dec. 20. They hope the drive-in will stick around until indoor dining is back.

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