‘Heartbroken’ restaurant owner forced to shut down suddenly

‘I’m truly, truly heartbroken’

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A popular Mexican restaurant in Keynsham has closed suddenly.

Kirsty Davenport opened Dalia Cocina on the town’s High Street five years ago. The restaurant was well-known for its Mexican-style street food, and its ‘hidden’ back garden, friendly service and interior decorations.

But this week, she announced that the restaurant had closed in an emotional message posted on the businesses’ social media platform.

Ms Davenport, who appeared on Channel 4’s Come Dine with Me: The Professionals last year, said she’d been hit by rising fuel and food costs, the cost-of-living crisis and wage increases.

And despite the reopening of Mokka nearby this year, and a surge in custom, the upturn was ‘just not in time’.

She said: “I’m truly, truly heartbroken. I’m happy, sad, scared, excited, proud, ashamed, I’m up, I’m down, I feel physically sick, but then free, my emotions are absolutely all over the place.

“These times have been tough for the whole of the hospitality industry. I would never have left there [the restaurant] of my own free will, so my hand has been dealt.”

She added: “The upside is, you supported us enough to give us a good name and you left incredible reviews, you came, you ate, you laughed, you drank. We are homeless for now, but we will be back.”

She said the business had plans to appear at upcoming festivals and ‘to find a kitchen’ to continue providing food.

The closure marks another blow for the High Street which last year lost Church’s newsagent, and this year greengrocer WF Buss. Last month, TSB closed its branch on the High Street.

Dalia Cocina in Keynsham has closed after five years in the town’s High StreetDalia Cocina in Keynsham has closed after five years in the town’s High Street
Dalia Cocina in Keynsham has closed after five years in the town’s High Street

Despite this, there have been several openings. Mokka opened in the former HSBC bank in March. A new greengrocer has opened in Temple Street recently and BristolWorld spoke to some traders last month who were upbeat about the town’s future.

However, the town will no longer be with Dalia Cocina. Reacting to the post on social media, some customers expressed their sadness.

One said: “I’m so sorry you’ve had such a hard time. Absolutely loved every meal with you without exception. I’m sure something will turn up , I can’t imagine you ever giving up. Looking forward to seeing the next chapter of your story.”

Another said: “That’s so sad my heart goes out to you, you gave my daughter an absolutely fantastic 40th birthday party last month the food was amazing and you all worked so hard and we all really appreciated it, thank you.”

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