COVID-19 has affected everyone’s life is some way, shape or form. Life has been somewhat put on hold. Some of the people that have been affected the most are dining in restaurant owners and operators.
While takeout and delivery can be enough from some restaurants; the model won’t work for everyone. If a temporary closure is right for you, here are the tips on how to do it properly, efficiently and at minimal cost.
This list is from the Arizona State Restaurant Association with the help of Darden Restaurants and 110 Grill. You Can also read the full article from the National Restaurant Association here: Do it right: Tips for temporarily closing your restaurant
- Empty all refrigeration units, unplug and leave doors open.
- Prepare and transfer all perishable food.
- Let staff take any food that can’t be frozen or saved.
- Take a final inventory of all food and beverage items remaining.
- Lock all alcohol in cages or in an office. (To preserve open bottles of liquor, remove pour tops and tightly wrap the bottle top in plastic cling wrap.)
- Clean and blow out beer lines.
- Remove all trash from the building and cancel dumpster pickups.
- Cancel all customer reservations.
- Turn off any autopayment processes.
- Cancel all scheduled deliveries: foods, soft drinks, liquor, sanitary supplies, linen service and any others.
- Cancel all scheduled services: trash pickup, beer-line cleaning, knife sharpening, cable TV service, music service, armored car pickup and any others.
- Close out your usual month-end procedures.
- Make sure you have updated contact info for all your employees.
- Alert your payroll company to any layoffs and/or changes in payroll, and alert your health insurance provider to any layoffs or elimination of benefits.
- Forward the restaurant phone line and email address to ones that will be monitored.
- Set thermostats to power-saving mode without shutting off the system completely. (Reconditioning the building after the air has been shut off can cause HVAC systems to fail.)
- Leave all your exhaust fans running. (If there’s a gas leak or a pilot goes out while the restaurant is closed, the fans will help exhaust any hazardous gas from the building.)
- Set tankless water heaters to off, turn off the water circulator pump, shut off any gas supply and turn off all gas to kitchen equipment.
- Perform a final walkthrough to ensure all kitchen knobs are set to “off”; all lights are off in the walk-ins, kitchen, dining room and offices; all entertainment electronics are off; and all exterior doors and doors to secure storage areas are locked.
Temporary closure may be necessary for your restaurant, but the industry will come back to full service with high demand! Everyone in the industry is behind you!