Guide for California Restaurants to reopen during COVID-19

There are signs of California reopening in the coming months. You can bet that Dine-In Restaurants are the most eager to acquire the foot traffic they once had. Unfortunately, it seems there are still some rules in place before things go back to normal.

California Department of Public Health has released guidelines for restaurants re-opening here. San Francisco's Eater did a good laying out the most important changes to come.

  • Restaurants must “provide disposable menus to guests and make menus available digitally so that customers can view on a personal electronic device, if possible. If disposable menus cannot be provided, properly disinfect menus before and after customer use.”

  • Restaurants must also “discontinue pre-setting tables with napkins, cutlery, glassware, food ware, etc. These should be supplied individually to customers as needed. Do not leave card stands, flyers, napkin holders, or other items on tables.”

  • Same goes for condiments: “Suspend use of shared food items such as condiment bottles, salt and pepper shakers, etc. and provide these foods in single-serve containers, if possible. Where this is not possible, shared items such as condiment bottles, shakers, etc., should be supplied as needed to customers and disinfected after each use.”

  • “Takeout containers must be filled by customers and available only upon request.”

  • And tablecloths might become a thing of the past: “Dirty linens used at dining tables such as tablecloths and napkins should be removed after each customer use and transported from dining areas in sealed bags. Employees should wear gloves when handling dirty linens.”

  • Restaurants must also “discontinue tableside food preparation and presentation such as food item selection carts and conveyor belts, guacamole preparation, etc.”

  • And forget grabbing a mint on your way out: “Do not leave out after-meal mints, candies, snacks, or toothpicks for customers. Offer them with the check or provide only on request.”

  • Brewpubs, breweries, bars, pubs, craft distilleries, and wineries must remain closed if they don’t offer sit-down dining, but they can reopen if they “contract with another vendor to...serve dine-in meals.”

Cities in California like Berkeley are getting creative by shutting down streets to help restaurants utilize more outdoor tables (of-course 6 ft apart).

It doesn't seem like California has determined the penalty for restaurants that do not abide by these rules and guidelines. Many could argue Bar/Night Clubs in more populated areas will have a hard time keeping at 50% capacity without ignoring any policies.

Vivid has been helping many restaurants get set up with online ordering and order ahead software (learn more here). Feel free to reach out to if you would like our team to help.

Stay safe :)

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