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Boka Restaurant Group plans to lay off more than 500 workers

The Chicago-based multi-concept operator, known for partnering with chefs like Stephanie Izard and Giuseppi Tentori, filed notice that it will begin mass COVID-related layoffs starting September 20.


James Beard nominees say they support the decision to cancel the awards

Past winners and 2020 nominees acknowledge the industry's challenges this year in supporting a two-year postponement.

The organization, which recognizes the country’s top independent restaurants each year, said handing out awards would do little to help an industry struggling amid the pandemic.

Mom and pops are facing rising debt amid the pandemic as they wonder how long they can stay afloat.

The multi-concept operator has already had to reclose just-opened restaurants due to the coronavirus and it is preparing to refund its holiday event deposits.

Mounting debt and operational uncertainty are creating a bleak future for mom and pops, according to a survey from the James Beard Foundation and the Independent Restaurant Coalition.

Independent restaurants, many of which have won awards and operated for decades, are closing due to the impacts of the pandemic.

Risky business or smart move? These operators are betting on the latter.

Close to a majority are investing in permanent adjustments to pandemic conditions.

Solo onion rings and singular cheeseballs are hitting menus as bars try to cater to customers who just want a beer.

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