Smoke: BBQ owner Adrian Martinez plans to reopen his popular dining spot at a new downtown location, the San Antonio Business Journal reports. The news comes a day after Martinez revealed the closure of the eatery's St. Paul Square location via a Facebook post.
Martinez said Smoke: BBQ will reopen with curbside service at 501 E. Crockett St. on Friday. Future plans include the expansion into an outdoor dining spot with a stage for live performances, eventually evolving into Smoke: BBQ Live.
Martinez told the SABJ the COVID-19 pandemic brought strain that began to tap his financial resources. His expenses included $20,500 a month in rent.
"I looked at it and made the decision because of uncertainty. No one knows what's going to happen this year, next year and so on," Martinez told the paper.
While Smoke: BBQ did well with takeout and catering during the pandemic, its large St. Paul Square location — which includes basement bar Ash and the tequila bar Fuego — couldn’t survive with only that revenue coming in, he added.
The new East Crockett location is just 9,000 square feet, including the outdoor patio, and its $2,200-a-month rent is more affordable, Martinez told SABJ.
"I don't want to give up Ash. I don't want to give up the tequila bar. I don't want to give up that venue," he said. "But at the age of 42, I'm just not that gambler that I used to be in the past, and I'm here to make reasonable business decisions."
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