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Trois Mec, the Hollywood Media District restaurant that in 2019 was awarded a Michelin star, has permanently shuttered, Krissy Lefebvre, a Trois Mec partner, Tuesday confirmed in an email to What Now Los Angeles.
Trois Mec was one of only 25 Los Angeles restaurants to don the Michelin award. Its website, social media, and automatic email reply still say the restaurant is only temporarily closed. As with the rest of the city’s eateries, Trois Mec temporarily closed in March to slow the spread of COVID-19 by mandate.
Here is Lefebvre’s statement in its entirety:
It is such a crazy time we are living in right now, but the reality is that there is no clear path forward for so many restaurants. As owners we do the responsible thing, buy business interruption insurance. But when the largest shutdown in American history happens, the insurance does not apply. The government sets up a program to help (PPP), but the rules and restrictions associated with the program made it so difficult to utilize the funds in a productive manner that could really help the business stay afloat. The program became more of a government-funded employer-paid unemployment program. As restaurateurs, we have had to shift and pivot numerous times, just to be told to do it again, but differently. The necessary rules on social distancing, now limited to outdoor dining with social distances (Los Angeles), truly limit the ability of restaurants to bring in enough revenue to cover costs.
Restaurants operate on some of the narrowest margins of any business. If the federal government does not recognize the value of an industry that brings in approximately $650B in 2020, investing 90% of that immediately back into the economy, then the independent restaurant truly is on the verge of extinction. Congress really needs to pass the Restaurant Act. This is bigger than the loss of Trois Mec, it is about a crumbling industry.
Losing Trois Mec is very painful. Ludo has worked for 35 years in this industry hoping to earn a Michelin Star (it’s a French thing 😉) and to face the reality that there is no way for a restaurant with 4 tables and 8 seats to survive in this pandemic, is very sad. The investment cost to build a suitable “outdoor” dining space, in a strip mall, next to a very active construction site, just can’t be justified at this point. The situation is sad for everyone. Our employees, their families, our guests, our suppliers, everyone.
We are so beyond grateful for the 7 years Trois Mec in Los Angeles. Ludo will now solely focus his efforts on keeping Petit Trois alive during this time and hope to be able to weather the storm. It is all really hard on our employees and we recognize this. We are beyond thankful for each and every one of them who come in daily come wearing their PPE to provide as normal as possible of a dining experience to our guests. The Trois Mec space will continue to serve the needs of Jose Andres’s World Central Kitchen relief efforts for as long as they need. We are honored and grateful that they have trusted us with some of their relief efforts in Los Angeles.