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José Andrés Closes D.C. and NYC Restaurants in Wake of Coronavirus

The chef will transform some into takeout-only “community kitchens”

José Andrés
José Andrés
World Central Kitchen / Facebook
Hillary Dixler Canavan is Eater's restaurant editor and the author of the publication's debut book, Eater: 100 Essential Restaurant Recipes From the Authority on Where to Eat and Why It Matters (Abrams, September 2023). Her work focuses on dining trends and the people changing the industry — and scouting the next hot restaurant you need to try on Eater's annual Best New Restaurant list.

Chef and humanitarian activist José Andrés has closed his restaurants in D.C. and NYC, citing the desire to halt the spread of the novel coronavirus. “We are in an unprecedented emergency,” he said on Twitter, “and as painful as it is, ALL restaurants, bars, etc. must be closed across America if we are to avoid what’s happening in other countries. This is the only way.” Per a press release, the restaurant employees will be “provided with paid leave and current health benefits for at least the first two weeks.”

As of today, all of his D.C. restaurants (including Minibar and the entire Jaleo portfolio) are closed. Some will be transformed into what the chef is calling “community kitchens” in conjunction with Andrés’s nonprofit World Central Kitchen. The community kitchens will offer to-go meals to those who need it. The community kitchens plan to “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.”

Reopening as community kitchens in Washington, D.C., area:

• America Eats Tavern, Georgetown

• Jaleo, Bethesda

• Jaleo, Crystal City

• Jaleo, Penn Quarter

• Oyamel, Penn Quarter

• Zaytinya, Penn Quarter

Reopening as community kitchens in NYC:

• Little Spain’s Spanish Diner at the Mercado Little Spain, Hudson Yards

Watch the chef’s video announcement here: