Last year in Houston, Texas-based marketing professional Karinn Chavarria inaugurated Latin Restaurant Weeks, calling the effort one of "pure passion for small businesses and the restaurant industry."
In 2020, Chavarria resolved to expand the concept to Miami.
"We wanted to bring awareness to Latino-owned restaurants. This is their livelihood," she tells New Times, adding that the COVID-19 pandemic transformed a priority into an urgency.
To date, 30 Miami-area restaurants have signed up to participate in Latin Restaurant Weeks. Each will offer a prix-fixe meal that can range from a smoothie and a sandwich to a multi-course dinner. Chavarria said she was happy to offer the promotion to restaurants at all price points.
"It's wonderful to see these smaller restaurants participating. They're happy to be part of something that's truly special," she says. She also aims to spotlight the community's diversity of flavors and national influences.
The promotion, which runs through Friday, November 27, also brings awareness to the Miami Dolphins Food Relief Program, which has been delivering food to Miami residents in need of a meal. Latin Restaurant Weeks has also partnered with Woodford Reserve bourbon, and many participating restaurants are featuring Woodford cocktails.
More than anything, Chavarria hope Latin Restaurant Weeks brings to light the role Latinos play in Miami's restaurant industry.
"For the longest time, Latinos have been the backbone of the restaurant industry," she points out. "From the back-of-house dishwashers and line cooks to the front-of-house managers and bartenders, Latinos are the hard-working people who make our meals. The culinary industry would not be what it is without Latinos."
For a complete list of restaurants participating in Miami Latin Restaurant Weeks, which runs through Friday, November 27, visit latinrestaurantweeks.com.