After facing backlash over a potential restaurant that would oust Dallas Comedy House from its Deep Ellum home, Terry Black’s Barbecue in Austin is biting back at claims that it bullied the venue’s owner.
On April 16, Eater reported that Dallas Comedy House owner Amanda Austin was accusing the barbecue joint’s parent company of trying to “bully” her out of the building that she’s occupied for the past three years. When we reached out to counsel for Black Market Investments, they didn’t offer any comment, but the restaurant posted a lengthy screed in defense of itself to Facebook, reportedly “against legal advice.”
“We, the Terry Black Family, take the allegations made by the Dallas Comedy House very seriously and against our legal advice think it is absolutely necessary to get as much of our side of the story out as legally possibly,” the post begins. “Ms. Austin’s assertion that her introduction to us was a default letter could not be further from the truth. We went above and beyond to notify her of numerous issues and gave her over two months to resolve these issues. It is also ironic that Ms. Austin chose to close her statement by saying, ‘I will not be bullied.’ It is disturbing to see several people jump to such drastic conclusions about us and our family business based upon completely biased and one sided stories.”
Austin told a very different story, saying that the lawyers for Black Market Investments sent her multiple notices to terminate tenancy by April 16 based on bogus claims that she was in default of her lease. As of that date, Austin was able to access the building, i.e. her landlord hadn’t changed the locks. “I don’t know what’s next. Oftentimes a notice to terminate tenancy is what they send before they send a lawsuit, but I can’t confirm because I haven’t received one,” Austin told Eater on Monday. “I was able to get in today. So it’s business as usual.”
She remains hopeful that she can reach an agreement with Black Market on her stay in the building, as her existing lease is good for two more years. If they won’t allow her to stay through the remainder of her lease, she hopes that Black Market at least allows her to remain in the building until she can find a new residence for Dallas Comedy House — finding her current spot took a year.
“Moving a business is really hard and we’re a very specific business with specific usage needs and location requirements,” Austin says. “I still believe there’s a way to negotiate this so both parties can end on a good note. I’m not going to be here forever, but I’m not going to close my business so they can move in.”
Neither Black Market Investments or its lawyers have responded to Eater’s request for comment at the time of publication. Scope out the full post from Terry Black’s below: