The El Torito restaurant at 3113 West Olive Avenue here in Burbank has shut down and removed all signage. The parent company, Cypress-based Real Mex Restaurants, shuttered the Burbank location and five other Southland eateries for a number of reasons from lackluster performance to “unfavorable” lease terms, according to the Orange County Register. The closures were announced last Monday, December 26. Real Mex is apparently trimming down in preparation for the acquisition of a new chain to kick start growth, the Register reports.
The word is some of the employees who lost their jobs will be offered positions at other locations. Real Mex owns the Acapulco, Chevy’s, El Torito Grill, and several other smaller chains for a total of more than 100 restaurants. The company has been struggling for a while. In 2011, it filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and was eventually taken over by a group of investors. Since then, Real Mex has been attempting to improve the bottom line by updating its restaurants’ brands and adding a variety of new dishes to the menus.
As for an El Torito replacement, Burbank Community Development Director, Patrick Prescott, said in an email: “We had an inquiry from Chick-Fil-A for that location, but we told them we would be hard pressed to support a drive through at that location because it would not comply with the Media District Specific Plan’s call for pedestrian oriented design and because of potential negative impacts on adjacent single family neighborhoods. That’s the only restaurant that has reached out to us about the site.”