There are many fan-favorite dishes at Mandarin Noodle House, which the owner prepared to serve while the crowds were out celebrating the Lunar New Year in Monterey Park.
Like many other restaurants in the San Gabriel Valley, Denny Mu’s has stocked its kitchen to prepare for the post-Christmas rush, which is typically the most profitable time of year for many businesses in the area. However, after the mass shooting on Saturday night, that all came to a screeching halt.
“That morning I had two parties for 12 cancellations,” Mu said. “I canceled another party of 10.”
Mu said there have been many empty seats at his restaurant in the past week, but said he is determined to persevere – and is encouraged to see customers returning today.
“Seeing our customers dine with us and fill their bodies with soul food is a reward in itself,” Mu said.
After a dreary and slow week, some small business owners in Monterey Park tell us they hope the community will come out this weekend and support them, including the owner of Mr.Obanyaki’s candy store.
“We specialize in Japanese fusions called ‘obanyakis,'” said owner Kevin Mok. “First we put the dough and it bakes for about 10 minutes.
Mok said he had a surplus of ingredients to make sure his shop had enough obanyaki for the late-night crowds.
“We thought Lunar New Year would be happy, joyful. But now, everybody – the streets are empty at 5:00, 6:00,” Mok said.
He never saw the crowds he expected, but remains optimistic that his community won’t live in fear and will continue to help small businesses like his.
“Everyone, just a blessed year,” said Mok. “New week, hopefully, new luck for everyone.”
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