Several Austin restaurants and food trucks are participating in the nationwide walk-out, A Day Without Immigrants, over President Donald Trump’s immigration policies on Thursday, February 16, as reported by Austin 360. This includes the following restaurants that are setting out to close, as well as those that can’t open because of lack of employees who are partaking in the strike:
- Kyoten Sushiko
- El Borrego de Oro
- Taqueria los Jaliscienses on Ben White Boulevard
- Taqueria Mi Trailita
- Mi Tradicion
- Casita Nicole Antojitos Mexicanos
- Veracruz All Natural
- Hay Elotes
- Hyde Park Bar & Grill on Westgate Boulevard
- Morelia Mexican Grill
- Dragon Delights
- La Mexicana Bakery
- Churro Co.
- Torchy’s Tacos on South Lamar and Guadalupe
- Tacodeli in Westlake
- Home Slice
- Swift’s Attic
- Wu Chow
- Taqueria Arandinas
- Vegan Yacht
- Both locations of Azul Tequila
- Both locations of Papalote Taco House starting at 3 p.m.
- Rosita's Al Pastor
- Taco More
- McDonald's on West Parmer Lane, Barton Springs & South Lamar, MLK & Guadalupe, and Capital Plaza
Distributed flyers promoting the strike urge people to boycott work, school, and even withhold from purchasing anything in order to show the impact of immigrants, both documented and undocumented.
Kyoten owner and chef Otto Phan took to his restaurant’s' various social media channels to explain why he decided to participate in the strike. He gave a shout-out to the Mexican-American community, which “has always played a big role in Austin’s hospitality industry,” and noted that his “heart is with them during this time of increased fear and panic.” Read his full note below.
While Vinaigrette isn’t closing, it will donate half of its proceeds from the day towards the Immigrant Legal Resource Center. Similarly, Old Thousand is donating 10% of its sales of the day to Caritas of Austin.
Celebrated restaurateur Jose Andres is leading the cause in DC, where he is shutting down his restaurants: Zaytinya, Oyamel, and all locations of Jaleo. The chef is a noted critic against Trump — he is in the middle of a lawsuit over pulling out of the now-president's new hotel in the city.
Italian restaurant Asti had to stop serving lunch this week because two of its employees were afraid of being detained during the recent immigration raids in the state.
Know of other restaurants, food trucks, and bars participating in the strike? Let Eater know through the tipline or shoot over an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Note from Kyoten Sushiko’s Otto Phan
I will always have tremendous love for all my mentors. And while I often speak of familiar names like Tyson Cole and Tatsu Aikawa, there have been many “Pablo’s” along the way that have also played an equal role in my development as a sushi chef. If it were not for the kindness of these mentors, I would not have the skills to run a sushi restaurant of this exceptional caliber. The Mexican American community has always played a big role in Austin’s hospitality industry, from your neighborhood taco trailer to one of Austin’s best sushi restaurants. My heart is with them during this time of increased fear and panic among a community that has been very good to me. -Otto Phan