What first attracted our team to Austin wasn’t the music scene, or the food scene, but the people. If you live in Austin, you understand. There is an overwhelming sense of community, openness and loyalty that surrounds this city - from the coffee shops, to the small businesses, to the restaurants.
As more restrictions are enacted to help stop the spread of the novel coronavirus, the restaurant industry has been hit with a series of devastating blows.
Many large cities and states have already issued their own mandates to close restaurants and bars. Recently, the same happened in Austin.
People across all parts of the industry — from restaurateurs to chefs and dishwashers — are growing increasingly worried as their livelihoods face unchartered territory. Many of these people we are lucky enough to call friends, peers, and mentors.
There are more than 1 million restaurants in the United States, employing 15.6 million people. More than 70% of these restaurants are small businesses that support their local communities. These local restaurants run on razor-thin pre-tax margins, and they are facing an unprecedented cash flow crisis.
Hundreds, if not thousands, of restaurants, may be closed until the pandemic is under control, and while many will be able to reopen, likely, many more will never recover.
FoodStories wasn’t built from a place of profit, but from a place of necessity and love. Love for our friends, love for our food, but most importantly, love for our city.
That is why we decided not to sit aside, witnessing how the restaurant scene of Austin is dying. That is why, from the comfort of our quarantined living room, we went to work. Building, connecting, and ideating a better future.
This is how FoodStories was born.