On Monday, Houston officials ordered the closure of bars and placed restrictions on restaurants. Dining in is no longer an option at local restaurants in order to help slow the spread of COVID-19, the upper-respiratory disease caused by the new strain of coronavirus.
This measure was put into effect Tuesday and continues for at least 15 days.
While many small businesses are taking hits, the potential damage to local restaurants is particularly heartbreaking. Having covered the food and drink scene in our area for two years, a lot of these places have become a part of my life.
When Hurricane Harvey wreaked havoc on Houston in 2017, I saw the Houston community as a whole come together to help their neighbors. Now, I’m seeing that again in many ways, including the multiple posts I’ve seen on social media of local residents reminding people how they can still support restaurants during this time.
You can still order carryout. Many restaurants are offering pick-up, delivery and curbside services.
The Classic, 5922 Washington Ave., is offering a limited to-go menu as well as a “Hunker Down” menu via online ordering, phone orders and DoorDash. Curbside pickup is available from 11 a.m.–7 p.m. daily. The Hunker Down menu will feed a family of four for $100. Each order will also include a roll of toilet paper while supplies last. They will offer free in-house delivery on orders of $50 or more.
Local Foods, 714 Yale St., is offering a limited to-go menu as well as a Hunker Down available for pickup or delivery from 11 a.m.–8 p.m. daily. Guests can order online or call and pick up curbside or get it delivered via DoorDash. They will also offer free in-house delivery on orders of $50 or more.
Field & Tides, 705 E. 11th St., is offering its full menu, with the exception of raw food items, for takeout and pickup orders, as well as delivery to the Heights, Hunters Creek, Spring Valley and Montrose. The restaurant will offer a $50 gift card after someone places a third order with them that can be used for dine-in only once their normal business operations are back in place. Delivery orders require a minimum of $20 and they will charge a $5 flat delivery fee.
Rainbow Lodge, 2011 Ella Blvd., is offering curbside pickup, along with a $20 gift card for a future visit.
And these aren’t the only places that are transitioning to carryout or offering promotions. I don’t have the space to name all of them, but I’ve seen several restaurants in our area post that they have that option available.
Another way to help a local spot while business is slower than usual is to buy gift cards.
Other ways to help include buying merchandise, such as shirts, or donating if the restaurant has that option. Of course, you can still tip while grabbing your carryout.
It’s also important to not forget the shops that aren’t your typical restaurant, like Tea + Victory, the board game cafe at 2030 E. T.C. Jester Blvd. The shop is offering curbside service for coffee and has an online store for board games and merchandise.
We don’t know how the next week will hit us, so let’s do the little we can while we can.