Want to know what doesn't work without a refrigerator? Sushi. Nori Handroll and dozens of other restaurants are closed in Dallas while they wait for the power outages to end. A storm knocked out power in much of Dallas on Sunday, June 9.

Want to know what doesn't work without a refrigerator? Sushi. Nori Handroll and dozens of other restaurants are closed in Dallas while they wait for the power outages to end. A storm knocked out power in much of Dallas on Sunday, June 9.

Smiley N. Pool/Staff Photographer

Take a look at Oncor's outage map and you'll see a big splat over Dallas, where storms knocked down trees and power lines and left hundreds of thousands without electricity. A storm of this magnitude would ordinarily send lights-out homeowners to restaurants, but they're suffering, too. 

"Everything is lost," says Jimmy Park, chef and owner of Nori Handroll Bar in Deep Ellum.

"I'm here with my guys, throwing everything away. Thousands of dollars, but I need to assure quality for Nori customers. I don't think we will even be able to open tomorrow. Our walk-in cooler is not working."

The storm is more than just an inconvenience, of course: It's costly. And it's unexpected. 

"The economic hit is significant; insurance doesn't cover this type of loss," says restaurateur Julian Barsotti. He owns four Italian restaurants in the Park Cities area. Fachini in Highland Park Village is the only one that lost power, and it closed on Monday and reopened on Tuesday.

The two-day outage at steakhouse Al Biernat's on Oak Lawn Avenue near the Park Cities was the longest unexpected closure they'd seen in 20 years, says Director of Operations Brad Fuller. He says the restaurant lost about $20,000 each day it was shuttered. Fuller reports he didn't lose any food or drink because he was able to use a generator to keep food cold and also brought Ben E. Keith refrigerated trucks to the restaurant to save other products.

Early Monday, White Rock Coffee near Lakewood was closed due to the power outage. (It felt especially unfair: No coffee on a stressful morning?) Their Facebook page sent customers to the White Rock Coffee in Preston Hollow, on Royal Lane, which remained open. They offered this olive branch: "Come charge your electronics if you need." 

That area of Lakewood was hit pretty hard, and restaurants like Hillside Tavern and Manny's Tex-Mex were closed Monday. Hillside Tavern won't reopen until Thursday, most likely; Manny's reopened on Tuesday.

East Bound and Down Ice House had a similar idea as White Rock Coffee, offering a comfortable spot for anyone in need. "If you're out of power, come watch TV, do your makeup, get work done and charge your phones," they say on Facebook.

The restaurants that were open were likely to have a good Monday night — the day that's otherwise considered "slow" in the restaurant world. On Lower Greenville, Snuffer's Restaurant & Bar was "slammed" on Monday, says Blythe Grates, senior marketing director for Firebird Restaurant Group. Other popular restaurants and bars on Greenville, like Rapscallion, HG Sply Co. and the Libertine Bar were open. Their operators expected to see lots of neighbors, many who were looking for dinner if the food in their fridges is getting tossed.

In that neighborhood, however, Wabi House was closed on Monday. It reopened Tuesday.

Ordinarily, Peja Krstic is cooking for his guests at Mot Hai Ba. This week, though, he's tossing out food.

Ordinarily, Peja Krstic is cooking for his guests at Mot Hai Ba. This week, though, he's tossing out food.

DMN file photo/2017

Mot Hai Ba chef-owner Peja Krstic says he'll lose about 80% of his food. He notes that he can't prep any new food until the power is back on. 

When it rains, it pours: "I will probably be closed [Tuesday] for service and maybe Wednesday if the power is not back," he says. "I also had a little situation on Saturday night when my internet box died and we lost any ability to run credit cards. I still have my whole Saturday sales open and not processed and now this power outage is making things even worse.

"Modern commodities that we take for granted are at a halt," he says.

Grates, who works for the company that operates local chains El Fenix and Meso Maya, says five of the company's restaurants were affected by power outages. The restaurants that remained closed on Monday were El Fenix in Casa Linda, Meso Maya at Preston-Forest and Village Burger Bar on Inwood Road near Forest Lane.

Cane Rosso, the pizza joint near White Rock Lake, closed for two reasons: a power outage and a recent robbery. They write on Facebook: "Any fellow Lakewood restaurants or businesses in the area: be safe, locked up, cleared out, on the lookout, and ready for people to be the absolute worst again tonight." Cane Rosso White Rock remained closed Tuesday and expects to reopen Wednesday.

Nearby East Dallas brewery On Rotation also closed Monday because of the storm.

The restaurants listed here are but a snapshot of a much larger list of closed restaurants; email sblaskovich@dallasnews.com if you know of others.

If you're wondering if your favorite neighborhood restaurant is open, the best bet is to drive by. 

Michalene Busico contributed to this story.

Editor's note on June 11, 2019: Many of the restaurants named in this story have since regained power and are open. Confirmed reopenings: Al Biernat's on Oak Lawn Avenue; Fachini in Highland Park; White Rock Coffee in Lakewood; Manny's Tex-Mex in Lakewood; Wabi House on Lower Greenville; El Fenix in Casa Linda; and Meso Maya at Preston-Forest.

Editor's note on June 12, 2019: Cane Rosso White Rock is expected to reopen Wednesday. Hillside Tavern is expected to reopen on Thursday.

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