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Charleston Restaurants React to the Novel Coronavirus Outbreak

Many are trying to stay open

Erin Perkins is the editor of Eater Carolinas, covering the food and restaurant scene across North and South Carolina.

As the novel coronavirus spreads, Charleston restaurants are starting to see a decline in business.

Establishments in the Lowcountry are trying to find ways to stay afloat while giving customers the opportunity to dine while coming into contact with as few other people as possible — spacing out tables more, optimizing takeout and delivery options and procedures, encouraging gift card sales, and the like. Charleston isn’t imposing any strict measures along the lines of curfews or lockdowns, but the phrase of the week is “social distancing” as local and national governmental and health organizations urge people to keep a distance.

Many restaurants took to social media over the weekend to insure that they are taking every precaution necessary to try to prevent the spread of the virus. Restaurant group Indigo Road posted the following about its restaurants:

Taking care of our employees and our guests has always been and always will be our highest priority. During this difficult time, we stay committed to this promise.

While we have always adhered to the highest standards of cleanliness and food safety, we are now taking extra precautions with our staff, our partners and purveyors to follow the guidelines and recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and the World Health Organization.

• Increased frequency for disinfection of high-touch areas with sanitizing solutions.

• Implementation of hand sanitizer dispensers throughout restaurants

• We have asked our employees to stay home if they are feeling ill

• We are requiring all vendors and delivery partners to bolster their own safeguards

We appreciate all of you. We are all in this together. Please keep safe and we hope to see you soon.

Cru Cafe/Purlieu owner John Zucker took to Facebook to say “I believe that we can survive this crisis and come out on the other side, but we need to work together to do that. I’m reaching out to gauge the interest of owners/operators to schedule a meeting to brainstorm, create a plan, and discuss the current crisis.”

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2 Nixons owner Jeffrey Stoneberger urged food and beverage employees to contact senators and congresspeople for help.

Thanks Jeffrey Stoneberger for getting a call to action. If you, like me, are concerned how this virus is already and...

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Most Charleston restaurants remain open, but as the week goes on, closures might become more prominent. Keep an eye here for updates.