Raise the Wage for Re-Opening

The debates have begun about whether higher wage guarantees for some of America’s most vulnerable and most effected by the pandemic should be part of the government’s recovery.  When I write it like that, it seems obvious that a higher min. wage and an elimination of the tipped min. wage ($2.13/hr in TX), need to […]

SAVES Resolution 10/1

It is with difficulty that I must speak against Item 52, the SAVES resolution which provides much needed assistance for childcare and music venues but not nearly enough to make a meaningful difference to Austin’s locally-owned bars & restaurants.  We are the nation’s and the city’s biggest employer, have been damaged in complex ways by […]

It’s the City’s Turn

Published in the Austin Business Journal It’s becoming clear that D.C. will not pass more substantial legislation that is supposed to get small businesses and their employees to the other side of the pandemic. Some businesses will close. Employees who were laid off during the temporary shutdown will not have jobs to return to, assuming […]


“Tomorrow’s May 1st, are you going to pay rent?” The interviewer asking me this question was hidden by the Skype set-up. The truth was, I didn’t know.  I haven’t been thinking about when bills are due during this shutdown.  What I should have said was, “We’re permitted to be open at 25% so that’s how […]

Wellness Update 3.15

We missed Pi Day yesterday.  I guess there were some other things going on. Practically, we are being as diligent about cleaning as we always are.  Staff has been told they can stay home if they want to and we have expanded our Paid Leave benefits for those who have to stay home.  We’re promoting […]

Some Virus Notes – 03.09.20

Now more than ever, I know why L’Oca d’Oro is fighting for the city to be allowed to implement the paid sick leave ordinance that L’Oca d’Or and many other businesses helped write. The public needs to know that workers in restaurants can afford to stay home when they are sick.  This can’t be left […]

Good Work Austin Benefit 6.27.19

Happy Birthday L’Oca d’Oro. Below is the toast from our event last night: I want to thank all of you who came out tonight and I want to thank all the folks who contributed to the evening, the many donors to the silent auction, Banner distilling, Susto Mezcal & Goodnight Loving Vodka for making Eva […]

Dan Barber and Washington’s Failure

“It’s not hard to see why organic food is expensive. Farmers have to price the organic carrots to reflect the cost of production in a world designed for them to fail. In the checkout aisle, we wince. A consensus is reached: Organic carrots are a noble idea but not a practical one to feed our […]

SB 15 Testimony

We were lucky to participate in yesterday’s hearing before the State Affairs Committee. Below is my testimony which I hope starts to get at why this is not just an issue regarding paid sick leave but about business’ ethical responsibility and the role of city government. “Good morning Madam Chair Huffman and members of the […]

The Goose Goes to Washington

Transcript of our testimony in Congress on the Raise the Wage Act, 2/13/19: Thank you members of Congress for your work on the Raise the Wage Act and for giving us an opportunity to tell our stories. My business partner and I opened L’Oca d’Oro, a full-service Italian restaurant in Austin, TX three years ago. […]

Hospitality Charges

20% Pre-Tax service charge

is added to all checks to ensure our employees a thriving base wage, provide paid sick leave and health benefits.  Additional gratuity is not required but is appreciated and is distributed to the entire staff.

2.85% Credit Card Convenience

We charge 2.85% on credit cards to help offset processing costs.  This amount is not more than what we pay in fees.  We do not surcharge on debit cards, gift cards or cash payments.

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