Mestizo Restaurant has asked a federal bankruptcy court for protection from its creditors while the Acadian Thruway restaurant reorganizes its finances after closing a second restaurant.
“The fact that Mestizo’s is in Chapter 11 is not going to have any impact on the current operations of the restaurant. Nothing is going to change. They’ll continue to have the same product they have had the past 15 years or so,” said Patrick Garrity, an attorney for the company.
Mestizo filed for bankruptcy protection because of the debt left over from a second restaurant, La Mestiza in Prairieville, Garrity said. When that restaurant closed, Mestizo was saddled with its debt, and dealing with the additional burden created some cash-flow issues.
Mestizo is going to reorganize to handle the cash-flow issues and move on, he said.
Mestizo’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing shows it has $505,437 in debt, all of it unsecured. The bulk of the money owed is taxes. Mestizo owes $168,868 to the Internal Revenue Service; $123,448 to the Louisiana Department of Revenue; and $40,723 to the city of Baton Rouge.
The upscale Mexican restaurant has been in business since 1999. Owner James Urdiales is active in the local and business communities. Among other things, Urdiales has served on the National Federation of Independent Business’ 20-member Louisiana Leadership Council. In June, the state Department of Health and Hospitals named the restaurant one of the state’s first three WellSpots because Mestizo offered healthy menu options, accommodated customers with dietary restrictions and trained staff to offer healthy dining options.
Mestizo filed for Chapter 11 reorganization on Feb. 6.
Bankruptcy court records show the restaurant generated $1.1 million in revenue in 2013 and $1.3 million in 2014. During the first five weeks of 2015, the restaurant had $122,960 in revenue.