WASHINGTON — There's nothing more D.C. than Ben's Chili Bowl. It's been a staple in the District for decades, and now it's getting national attention thanks to a new ad from Google.
The ad shows someone searching for "restaurants near me," before showing Ben's Chili Bowl and speaking with owners, including founder Virginia Ali, about how the coronavirus pandemic has impacted the historic D.C. spot.
Ben's struggled early on during the virus outbreak but has remained open.
"We've been through all kinds of changes but this pandemic has been the most difficult of all the challenges I've experienced," Ali says in the ad.
Ben Ali, a Trinidadian-born immigrant and his fiancé, Virginia, opened the iconic restaurant in 1958. Despite recent struggles, the restaurant continues to give back to the community.
"Business dropped 80% or more with the onset of COVID-19," co-owner Sage Ali told WUSA9 last year. "We were set up to have our best year ever. Things were going very well. All of a sudden, this hit and it caught everyone off guard."
Despite the recent struggles, Ben's continues to survive and thrive, and that's a D.C. thing.