Renowned Spanish-American chef José Andrés announced on Sunday that he would shut down all of his restaurants in the Washington, D.C., area.
The restaurants, including Oyamel and Zaytinya, will be closed until further notice. Some of his restaurants will be transformed into community kitchens to offer lunches for those in need of a meal, Andrés said on Twitter.
"The community kitchens will operate out of the restaurants’ side doors with a limited number of volunteers from 12 – 5 pm daily beginning Tuesday, March 17, offering only takeout service. All restaurant employees will be provided with paid leave and current health benefits for at least the first two weeks," Andrés wrote in a statement.
Restaurant Closures and Community Kitchens:
- America Eats Tavern, Georgetown: A community kitchen will operate from the back upstairs patio.
- China Chilcano, Penn Quarter: Due to the lack of outdoor space at the restaurant, a community kitchen will not be available.
- Jaleo, Bethesda: A community kitchen will operate from the side door.
- Jaleo, Crystal City: A community kitchen will operate from the side door.
- Jaleo, Penn Quarter: A community kitchen will operate from the side door.
- minibar and barmini, Penn Quarter: The restaurant and bar both closed following the end of service on March 14. A community kitchen will not be available. Guests with existing reservations will be contacted to rebook, and deposits will be refunded.
- Oyamel, Penn Quarter: A community kitchen will operate from the side door.
- Zaytinya, Penn Quarter: A community kitchen will operate from the side door.
- Beefsteak, Dupont, Foggy Bottom & Montgomery Mall: Our D.C.-area fast-casual locations will offer delivery only, available via our website.
- Pepe Food Truck, D.C.: Will remain in operation, check here for current location.
"We feel these community kitchens can help during this challenging time, and those who cannot afford to pay we will welcome as well," Andrés said.
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José Andrés is the founder of World Central Kitchen, a nonprofit that provides meals to victims of natural disasters. He won the National Humanities Medal in 2015 for his work with World Central Kitchen.
Andrés owns dozens of restaurants, 11 of which are located in the D.C. area.