José Andrés temporarily closes all restaurants; converts them into community kitchens

The celebrity chef and philanthropist is providing affordable meals in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.

chefs cooking in restaurant kitchen
Photo by Michael Browning

Currently, grocery store shelves look like the zombie apocalypse has taken over the region. Food is sparse and locals are weary of going out to eat. As the risk of the coronavirus sweeps the DMV (and the nation), businesses are doing what they can to support families in need, including José Andrés and his ThinkFoodGroup restaurant group.

In response to the coronavirus, the ThinkFoodGroup team is temporarily closing all restaurants in the Washington, DC area and New York City, as of March 15. All restaurants are being repurposed as community kitchens, offering affordable plates available for takeout.

We are in a serious global emergency and people need to take every precaution, including staying home as much as possible,” Andrés said in a recent press release. “However, we also want to help provide food for those who want it in a safe manner, so we feel these community kitchens can help during this challenging time. And those who cannot afford to pay we will welcome as well.”

The restaurants’ efforts will operate out of each location’s side doors with a limited number of volunteers from noon to 5 p.m. daily, beginning Tuesday, March 17. Only takeout service will be available. 

Restaurants impacted by this change include Georgetown’s America Eats Tavern; Penn Quarter’s China Chilcano; Bethesda’s, Crystal City’s and Penn Quarter’s Jaleo; Penn Quarter’s minibar and barmini; and Oyamel and Zaytinya, both also located in Penn Quarter. The fast-casual Beefsteak, located in DC, is also currently offering delivery, and Pepe Food Truck will remain in operation throughout the city.

Looking for free meals for your family during school closures? Click here to see our list of available options.

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