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NYC Restaurants Scramble to Prepare for Potential Avocado Shortage

Plus, New York is getting its first annual halal restaurant week — and more intel

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Slices of avocado sit above black beans on blue corn tortillas as part of a taco preparation
Black bean and avocado tacos from For All Things Good.
Gary He/Eater NY

Restaurants across the city are voicing concerns about the possibility of an avocado shortage, after the U.S. Department of Agriculture temporarily banned export of the fruit from Mexico over the weekend. Some, like Venezuelan restaurant Casa Ora, tell Time Out that they are stockpiling underripe avocados expecting sourcing issues down the line, while others, including For All Things Good in Bed-Stuy and the Rosa Mexicano restaurant chain, say they would consider removing avocado — and yes, guacamole — from their menus if things didn’t change soon.

Several restaurants tell Grub Street they have enough avocados to make it through the next week or two, but prices are already shifting. At upscale Mexican restaurant Aldama, owner Chris Reyes tells the publication that the price of a case of 48 avocados has increased from $55 to around $75. If the import ban on avocados continues, the cost of his restaurant’s guacamole may start to move, too. “We’re not at that point yet,” he says.

Whispers of New York’s latest supply chain issue started earlier this week, after the USDA announced it had temporarily suspended avocado imports from Michoacán, the Mexican state responsible for exporting 80 percent of the United States’s avocados. The suspension came after “a verbal threat was made to U.S. safety inspectors working in the country” and “will remain in place for as long as necessary,” according to the New York Times.

New York is getting its first annual halal restaurant week

Two leading social media accounts promoting halal eating, Halal NYC and the Halal Guide, are teaming up to launch the city’s first annual halal restaurant week. The event will run from March 17 to 31 and include more than 50 halal restaurants in the five boroughs and Long Island, the groups announced in an Instagram post on Wednesday. Participating businesses will offer a prix fixe menu at a discounted price in an effort to boost awareness of halal restaurants in the city.

A restaurant chain where you order by the decimeter

A Chinese-Korean restaurant chain, where customers order their food by the decimeter, opened earlier this month at 71 Fourth Avenue, at the corner of East 10th Street, near Union Square. Photos posted to DM Restaurant’s Yelp page appear to show dinner sets that can be ordered in three sizes, all measured in decimeters, the metric unit of length that’s equal to one tenth of a meter. According to EV Grieve, it’s the first location in North America for the restaurant chain, which claims to have more than 200 locations internationally.

Inside a dinner club nourishing transgender New Yorkers

Grub Street sits down for pastrami and pesto sandwiches with CDI Cross Gender Community this week, a dinner club that’s nourished transgender New Yorkers for decades. The club, started by a group of male crossdressers in the 1980s, skews old and has just one rule: Gentlemen aren’t welcome, with guests being required to dress in the “most passable feminine presentation” of themselves. A professional makeup artist is present for most meetings.