In a pickle! Beloved Lower East Side business owner says he may be forced to close; he needs workers


LOWER EAST SIDE, Manhattan — A beloved business owner is the owner, chef, cashier and cleaning staff of his restaurant.

Diller has dished up pickle-focused foods since 2019, but the pandemic hit the business hard, owner Mike Garlick said. Customers came back, but his workers didn’t. Garlick said five of his employees quit during the pandemic and never came back.

“‘I get paid more to stay home than to come to work,’ that’s what they said to me,” said Garlick.  

Customers waiting for fried pickles, vinegar-brined french fries, a rueben egg roll, jalapeño poppers and a Beyond burger on Monday felt bad for him. Long-time customer Raymond Rodriguez considered hopping behind the counter to help out.

Garlick is not alone. Many small business owners are struggling to stay staffed.  An October survey by the National Federation of Independent Business found that 49% of owners had job openings that could not be filled while 94 percent of those hiring reported few or no qualified applicants for the jobs they were trying to fill immediately. 

“If you have kitchen experience, we pay more than minimum wage.  We have benefits here.  It’s a family oriented small shop,” said Garlick. 

Reach out to Garlick if you want to apply or help.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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