The salt and pepper shakers sit atop blue tables, and a yellow and orange banner outside invites passersby to stop by for Happy Hour specials and karoke. But the tables at Echo Park’s La Botana (formerly Nuvia’s) have remained empty and the karoke machine silent since late October, leaving nearby merchants to wonder what happened to the Sunset Boulevard pupuseria and Mexican restaurant. The phone goes unanswered and unopened mail has piled up in the doorway.
“It’s been closed since Halloween,” said one merchant in an email.”I thought it closed for the holidays. But, it’s been a month now and there aren’t any signs up, no closing party, nothing … ”
The restaurant, formerly known as Nuvias, had undergone changes in recent years, broadening its menu beyond pupusas and adding alcoholic beverages to the menu. Online records indicate the restaurant’s alcohol license is still owned by the previous owners.