On the Embarcadero, 26-year-old Palomino, once known for his popular happy hour, just closed. Three restaurants near Oracle Park — Pete’s Tavern, Pedro’s Cantina and Amici’s East Coast Pizzeria — have also closed, according to Hoodline. And in the Mission District, the owner of Dosa is also closing its original location on Valencia Street after 15 years.
“It was a combination of a lot of different things,” Dosa CEO Anjan Mitra told ABC7 News. “It felt like the perfect storm that hit us, hit the restaurant industry.”
LIST: Restaurant closures in historic Bay Area
Mitra said the rise of food delivery companies, such as DoorDash, Uber Eats and GrubHub, as well as technology companies like Munchery and Sprig, which delivered ready-made meals to customers, contributed to the increase in the number restaurant closures.
“The way people order food, you know online, puts a lot of price pressure on us,” Mitra explained, “So they took our markups away from us, so we’re giving up 25-30% of our prices to delivery companies.
On top of that, he said, the high cost of living, as well as the City’s requirements for employee benefits, have driven up business costs.
“It became almost impossible to sustain it,” he said.
According to Laurie Thomas of the Golden Gate Restaurant Association, who reviewed the numbers available on Yelp, restaurant closings in San Francisco exceeded openings by 9%. She said last year there were 325 closings compared to 298 openings.
Thomas, along with other members of the Golden Gate Restaurant Association, recently addressed the San Francisco Board of Supervisors asking the city to offset some of the costs for small business owners.
“If you want to have neighborhood restaurants, keep adding to the vibrancy of each of those neighborhoods,” Mitra said. “You have to think about the laws that you actually put in place that could potentially have a devastating impact on the city and in the Bay Area, potentially.”
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