Remember a few years back how a number of Houlihan’s restaurants were closing with little to no warning? It was so bad in some cases workers were at or on their way to their jobs when they found out the place had shut down.

This was before the pandemic, too, so it had nothing to do with it. It was things like market forces, disputes with landlords, etc. A company has to know its end is near, I mean, they’re seeing the books. So it’s a shame when employees are mistreated by being kept in the dark right up until they show up for a shift to a locked door with a note taped to it.

You are fired
Karen Roach

The same thing just happened with a number of TGI Fridays locations in New Jersey.

It’s the no notice that gets to me.

I had a friend once who worked for a trucking company before he became an owner-operator. It was about a week before Christmas and he and other truckers were dads with families.

They all showed up to the fenced-in lot where the rigs were kept. The gate was closed, locked tight, and a note coldly informed all of them the company was out of business and they were all out of work.

Well, it’s happening yet again in the restaurant business in the Garden State.

This time it’s Jose Tejas.

Google Maps
Google Maps

The small Tex-Mex chain had three locations in New Jersey. The newest one in Mount Laurel just went dark on Tuesday. It was the newest one in the state and lasted only a year.

After great consideration, we have made the difficult decision to close our Mt. Laurel, NJ location effective January 2, 2024. We want to thank all of our wonderful guests and team members for supporting us over this past year,” read a company statement on their website.

If the closure really happened “after great consideration” you would think employees wouldn’t have been blindsided. I mean great consideration would have taken a while, right? Yet, word is staff at the Mount Laurel location was taken by complete surprise and only found out the same day they closed.

This is typical corporate disrespect. It's a slap in the face to anyone who's worked hard for them.

Closed sign hanging in business window
Susan Vineyard

Also I’m shocked the newest location folded. Jose Tejas has a location in Iselin that feels like it’s been there as long as I can remember. It’s a fantastic place and was packed every time I enjoyed it.

There’s one other Jose Tejas in New Jersey with their Fairfield location, and two in Massachusetts plus one in Delaware.

Restaurants that closed in New Jersey During 2023

Here are some of the restaurants that closed their doors around New Jersey in 2023 listed alphabetically. Did your favorite restaurant close in 2023? Contact reporter Dan Alexander at

Gallery Credit: Dan Alexander

LOOK: 50 Beloved Retail Chains That No Longer Exist

Stacker takes a look at 50 major retail chains that no longer exist and the reasons for their demise.  

Gallery Credit: Madison Troyer

Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Jeff Deminski only.

You can now listen to Deminski & Doyle — On Demand! Hear New Jersey’s favorite afternoon radio show any day of the week. Download the Deminski & Doyle show wherever you get podcasts, on our free app, or listen right now.

Click here to contact an editor about feedback or a correction for this story.

More From New Jersey 101.5 FM