COVID-19: Calgary diners pleased about eating with others again as restrictions eased – Calgary


For the first time since mid-December, people returned for breakfast at the Monkey Breakfastclub and Bistro in Calgary, and the diners couldn’t be happier.

The popular dining area was busy on Saturday mornings as customers set a date for the first two days before Benedict could sit down and enjoy an egg as the restaurants were forced to close two months ago.

“It’s so nice to just go out, socialize and interact and just leave the house,” said Brett Giachetta, who was having breakfast there on Saturday.

On Feb. 8, Alberta restaurants were allowed to reopen for personal dining. The rules allow six people to sit at one table; all must be from the same apartment. Those who live alone may have two more close relationships.

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Plexiglas shields were installed for an additional layer of protection against the virus.

“We had to get rid of four tables, so that’s a huge difference, but we’re doing it,” said manager Francis Catholos.

He said Monki has 36 powers as usual, but now he has 18.

“Fortunately, I’ve been there all the time. But for me personally, it’s great that I don’t have to talk to myself anymore, ”Katolos laughed.“ I can talk to clients again and again with my staff. It’s always a favorite thing for Monki; we’re a family here. ”

Employees had to adapt to the tight squeeze, but it’s worth it, given the squeeze in their budget as they’ve been laid off.

“I’m really unemployed for two months. I’ve worked a bit in retail, but it’s not the same, so it definitely helps. I have a student loan, so it’s good to see money in the bank again, ”said server Dani Marshall.

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Customers like Giachetta say they don’t have to worry about eating with others as long as the pandemic continues.

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“Right now, I’m familiar with all the protocols and I’m confident that restaurants will do everything they can to keep themselves safe,” Giacchetta said.

This time a new element is the requirement to search for contacts. Some restaurants have made it simple: the customer has to scan the QR code with their phone and show their name and phone number.

“It takes 20 seconds to say your name and phone number so you can go,” Giacchetta said.

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The Alberta Hospitality Association is in talks with government officials over the next week or so to ease more restrictions in March, such as how many people will eat together or stay open after 11 p.m.

“Right now, it’s not very important for the cold, but when spring comes, especially with our 17th Avenue, we would like the curfew to be postponed a bit,” said AHA President Ernie Tsu, who owns Trolley 5 Brewpub on 17th SW Avenue. does

Tsu said that despite the severe cold weather last week, people still came out to support local restaurants.

“I’ve heard it was a very good start, even though it was very cold. It’s good that everyone sees their staff coming back, ”Tsu said.

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But for people who work in restaurants, it’s more than just a pay raise.

“Just the vibration, the feeling of the people around you and the conversation. Being outside. I can say that socialization is the best part,” Marshall said.