Downtown Cincinnati's Mita's to Transform into a Relief Center for Restaurant Workers

Teaming up with chef Edward Lee's The LEE Initiative, the center will offer hot meals (to go) and groceries to food/beverage industry workers affected by coronavirus closures

click to enlarge Mita's - Photo: Joe Harrison
Photo: Joe Harrison

Downtown Cincinnati's Mita's has teamed up with chef Edward Lee's The LEE Initiative program to transform the restaurant into a relief center for employees in the food and beverage industry that have been affected by coronavirus-related closures. The center provides aid for restaurant workers who were laid off or experienced a significant pay reduction or reduction in hours. The program kicked off on March 19. 

Partnering with Maker's Mark, the center is offering nightly to-go dinners for recently unemployed restaurant industry workers (limit two per person unless it's an emergency situation), as well as supplies like diapers, baby food, canned foods and cereals, toilet paper (when available), paper towels, aspirin, notebooks and pencils and more. Supplies are limited per person. 

"We will continue to offer this program throughout the quarantine period or until we can no longer financially support the program," a press release from Mita's reads. 

The relief center will be open 5-8:30 p.m. daily. Bring your ID and employment paperwork (like a pay stub) that shows you were recently employed at a restaurant. 

The restaurant asks that those taking advantage of the relief center be patient — lines may be long and they will be handing out meals outside of the restaurant. 

According to the press release, they plan to hand out 250 to 350 meals a night on a first-come, first-served basis. 

If you'd like to donate to the Restaurant Workers Relief Fund, visit To volunteer or donate supplies, email [email protected] 

"The Salazar Restaurant Group is thankful for the continued support of our Cincinnati community and for the chance to partner with The Lee Initiative and Maker's Mark to give back to it," the press release concludes. 

Mita's, 501 Race St., Downtown.

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