Chef Kevin Ashade feels like a student who just failed the big test.
“You failed, but you don’t know how you failed. You don’t have any answers. You don’t know what questions you got wrong. You don’t know what you did,” said Ashade, known affectionately as ‘Chef Kev.’
In truth, Chef Kev did not fail. And neither did his newly-opened Pangea Restaurant and Bar that fronts President George Bush Turnpike in Garland.
The coronavirus pandemic swept into North Texas and forced the closure of Pangea and hundreds of other businesses in Dallas County, and thousands more across the region.
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Chef Kev held a Grand Opening for Pangea on Jan. 24, after years spent working in high-end kitchens here in the Dallas area and after securing a significant amount of funding through bank loans, and was looking forward to launching something that could last.
“Some people quit their job and put their livelihood in my hands. And I was in here, day in and day out. You can ask anybody. I never missed a day,” Chef Kev said. “There is no preparing for this. I can’t tell everybody to be ready for something that we have never prepared for.”
The building’s landlord has agreed to wait for April’s rent, considering the circumstances, which Chef Kev described as “very helpful.”
But there are still taxes and payroll to meet, with no clear answers on when customers can return.