Over the weekend, a visit to two Houston restaurants from Attorney General Jeff Sessions caused a major backlash, and the controversy inspired a particularly snarky sign on the marquee at El Real in Montrose.
Sessions dined at El Tiempo Cantina and La Mexicana over the weekend, and Houstonians weren’t particularly happy about it. At El Tiempo Cantina, Sessions posed with co-owner Dominic Laurenzo in a photo, which inspired a social media fury so intense that the restaurant chain shuttered its social media accounts and issued an apology.
In response to the furor, Montrose Tex-Mex restaurant El Real threw shade at the El Tiempo controversy with a sign on its extremely visible marquee on Westheimer. “Brunch sessions at El Real are always cage-free and full of rainbows,” the marquee read, likely in response to Sessions’s role in the Trump administration’s anti-immigrant policies and longstanding dedication to dismantling protections for LGBT people.
Houston bar mogul Bobby Heugel also weighed in on the controversy, posting a lengthy missive on the issue to his Instagram account. Heugel later deleted the post, but made the point that restaurant and bar owners often can’t choose who to serve based on their political beliefs thanks to the tight margins that these establishments operate within.