The trustee appointed to oversee the bankruptcy of Don Coqui Restaurant in New Rochelle closed the restaurant March 19 because it was losing money, the trustee’s lawyer told a judge today.
Peter Zisser said that for each $1 in sales, the restaurant, formerly known as MacMenamin’s Grill, was spending $1.10 to $1.15.
“It didn’t help to keep the restaurant open anymore,” Zisser, who represents trustee Robert Geltzer, told U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Adlai S. Hardin Jr. in White Plains. “It would have kept losing money.”
Zisser also disclosed that a number of employees were not paid for the work they performed during the week before the restaurant closed. Some of that money is in the form of tips that they earned, he said. Those tips are “embedded” in credit card payments the restaurant received, he said.
Geltzer’s decision to close the restaurant last month drew criticism at the time from the lawyers representing owner Brian MacMenamin and investor Jimmy Rodriguez. They said Geltzer pledged to let the restaurant stay open if Rodriguez could come up with $150,000 but then changed his mind.
The restaurant filed for bankruptcy protection last November after being hurt by the recession and delays in getting a state license for a cooking school at the site.