Restaurant owners have begun dusting off pots and pans and readying their kitchens in preparation for next Monday’s limited reopening of the sector.
On Saturday Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley announced that curbside pick-up and delivery services for restaurants and street food outlets would resume on July 19.
With flames set to be reignited next Monday, restaurant owners have begun dishing out work to ensure the expected overflow of orders is met. According to Wayne Kowlessar, owner of Bottles and Bites restaurant in St Joseph Village, San Fernando, the days leading up to the partial re-opening of the food industry would be buzzing with activity.
“Stocktaking, re-orders and deep cleaning…deep cleaning is sanitizing this restaurant from the ceiling to the floor, a complete sanitization. The entire restaurant, not only the kitchen but also the bar, the eating area, the patio area, every area.”
Kowlessar also explained that the partial re-opening of business will keep hopes burning in and out of the kitchen.
“It has been the most difficult period for us, the last year and a half, particularly the last two and a half months there is zero sales and most of all our staff, no income for our staff, although we support them and continue to support them.”
Kowlessar said he was grateful for the opportunity for people in the food sector to start back earning funds as the pandemic had left many thinking that their business’ days were numbered.
“If this lifeline was not extended to us, maybe within the next two months we would have had to seriously consider closing the restaurant.”
Kowlessar’s son, Brent, who is a manager at the family-operated restaurant said, sadly, even before the prospect of profits, there were still losses to be counted in the coming days.
“I’m sure we are going to have to dump a few things because of the fact that a lot of things expire, freezer burn, when you open something it will expire, so I am sure we are going to lose a lot of things.”
Meanwhile, over at “I Love Sauce Doubles” in Barataria, employees ensured all was in order for next week Monday, both in and out of the kitchen.
Branch manager Fazeer Hosein said with the doubles desire raging, customers needed to adhere to all health protocols to ensure their saving grace was not taken away from them again.
“Let us do the right thing and take away, buy and go…go back to your vehicle, go back to your home, but just come buy and go, safety first.”
Over at Pappy’s Fried Chicken in Woodbrook, last-minute touches were being made to welcome customers once again, a scene that will likely be replicated across the food industry in the coming week.