ST. LOUIS – Some St. Louis restaurant owners and managers say they are already concerned about winter. COVID-19 concerns and restrictions will create challenges some restaurants might not be able to overcome.
Chef Rick Lewis is the owner of Grace Meat + Three. The restaurant is known for its comfort food. Lewis said there’s little comfort for locally-owned restaurants right now.
“I talk to lots of restaurant owners every day and everybody is fearful of what winter is going to bring,” he said.
Lewis said he’s fortunate to have enough room in his restaurant to socially distance tables. He recently added a walk-up window and believes deliveries will be big part of future business.
“Our main goal is to just make our food as accessible to everybody as we can,” Lewis said.
Jimmy Polito is the manager of Square One Brewery & Distillery. The Lafayette Square neighborhood business is known for making its own beer and spirits. A heated patio makes for a nice dining area and a recently added walk-up window makes carry out orders available for those who do not want to come inside.
“Going into the wintertime we are really nervous because everyone wants to sit outside,” Polito said. “It’s just a nervous time for everyone.”
He hopes everyone will take precautions to help to lower the spread of COVID-19. St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson was asked about the winter months during Tuesday’s Facebook briefing.
“As it gets colder it will be more difficult, so we are working with bars and restaurants,” she said.
Krewson’s office said the city will be guided by COVID-19 data when decisions about restrictions are adjusted. Current dining room capacities are limited to 50 percent in St. Louis and bars and restaurants cannot stay open after 11 p.m.