Philadelphia restaurants are on the verge of Spring with a hopeful return to Philly indoor dining.
With Spring 2021 in the Northern Hemisphere beginning on Saturday, March 20, and a set of C-19 vaccinations already in motion, I get the feeling that a lot more people are going to be ret to roll into the open and party. Freely. Like it’s 1999.
Never mind that European countries that opened wide, in desperation, early, are currently going into quiet re-re-lockdown due to another pandemic’s spread. Or that live-event experts just yesterday, again, postponed huge outdoor live concert festivals Coachella and Stagecoach into mid-2022.
I know… I’m a crepehanger.
That said, if places and spaces, indoor and outdoor, are to open, there needs to be greater uniformity and regulation. When I’m crying out for uniformity, you had better believe it is necessary!
For example, just the other day, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf announced the lifting of some targeted restrictions on restaurants and other businesses, as well as increased gathering limits.
“Effective April 4, restaurants may resume bar service; alcohol service will be allowed without the purchase of food; the curfew for removing alcoholic drinks from tables will be lifted; and indoor dining capacity will be raised to 75 percent for those restaurants that are currently self-certified and those that undergo the self-certification process, which involves agreeing to strictly comply to all public health safety guidelines and orders, including the cleaning and mitigation protocols and other operational requirements contained in the Governor and Secretary of Health’s mitigation and enforcement orders issued on November 23, 2020, as amended. Those restaurants that do not self-certify may raise capacity to 50 percent. Outdoor dining, curbside pick-up and takeout are still encouraged.”
That may or not be fine. Your call.
That does not mean, however, that Philadelphia and its immediate surrounding areas has gone, or will go in the immediate future, beyond its recent restrictions. If you want to open, indoors, even at 50% capacity with a max of 4 people seated at one table, your restaurant has to meet new ventilation standards the likes of which we detailed at dosage MAGAZINE previously.
That said, Federal Donuts just re-opened downtown in a temporary space. Downstairs at 1526 Sansom Street, with some indoor seating. Just as CookNSolo’s Abe Fisher popped its tiny room top with indoor seats. Those two join the likes of The Dutch (1527 S. Fourth Street) and Fond (11th and Tasker Streets) in the re-opening indoor stakes or steaks?! Northern Liberties is holding its Restaurant week from April 9 to April 18 with Standard Tap leading the way north.
And one thing I’ll have more to say about once I get hold of him, is Stina on Snyder Avenue’s chef-owner Bobby Saritsoglou and his take on the whole #NotPizza box trend started by Hardena. A carb-free box of Mediterranean meat fresh from his restaurant’s wood-burning oven, and ready for pick up. WTF?!