ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – New Mexico’s restaurant industry continues to take a big hit during the coronavirus pandemic. However, that isn’t stopping one Albuquerque businessman from starting a new restaurant during this time.
Business is closed, and it’s been like that for many restaurants throughout New Mexico. However, Tako Ten Chef and Owner, Dominic Valenzuela, says he’s up for the challenge. “The demand is there and so you only got one chance. I figured, why not go for it,” he says.
After seeing a lot of success with his taco food truck, Valenzuela decided it was time to expand. Then, the coronavirus hit, and many of his colleagues in the restaurant industry not only lost their jobs but their businesses.
Just last week, the Revenue Stabilization and Tax Policy Committee met at the roundhouse to talk about New Mexico’s financial future. The committee noted the hospitality industry has taken the biggest hit during the pandemic.
“687 businesses closed in New Mexico since the start of the pandemic. 355 of those were permanent closures. About 210 of those were restaurants,” the committee noted last week.
Valenzuela realizes the odds are not in his favor, but he’s confident in his business. “Honestly, we don’t feel like it’s going to affect us too much being that tacos are a take out style food,” he says.
While the coronavirus wasn’t something Valenzuela planned for, he believes his hard work will pay off. “All I can do is continue to work hard and hope there’s going to be an end to it soon,” he says.
Since Valenzuela started planning his businesses before the coronavirus, he had to make some adjustments. He’s now adding patio seating to be compliant with the state’s health order.
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