With seating capacity reduced by half, city restaurants could remain full on the first day of reopening on Monday. The two-and-a-half-month shutdown has whetted the appetite for dining out and there could be queues despite the stringent anti-Covid measures, felt owners. Around half of those who visit restaurants, however, could prefer to place orders on phone instead of interacting with waiters and opt for disposable crockery, they felt.
Requests for bookings poured in at restaurants on Sunday. Most restaurants, however, have chosen to stick to the first-come-first-served system.
“We expect a decent crowd for lunch and the footfall could rise in the evening, though dinner time has been cut short. We must down shutters by 9pm, but we still expect a short queue by late evening,” said Sudesh Poddar, owner of Song-Hai.
Some of the Park Street restaurants are expecting a ‘good crowd’ as well. “It would have helped if we could serve alcohol, but we still expect a good turnout,” said Mocambo and Peter Cat owner Nitin Kothari.
Trincas, known for its live music, has decided to wait a few days and plans to open later in the week. “We will resume with a curtailed workforce since the number of guests has been halved. For a fortnight, we have been delivering food via online services. Now it seems people are ready to dine out,” said Anand Puri of Trincas.
Mughlai chain Oudh 1590 received several requests for bookings at its flagship outlet at Deshapriya Park on Sunday. But they were turned down. “We are keeping fingers crossed and expect a good turnout. We will be offering the option of remaining ‘contact-free’ once guests are inside. They can order on phone from the table by calling a number that we will provide. That apart, menus and bills will be virtual,” said owner Shiladitya Chaudhury.
Source: Times of India