Restaurants are moving forward without eating inside


For many, the future is uncertain.

Michele Gaton, 50, owner of Extra Virgin in the West Village, said she and her chef told 34 workers they would no longer be scheduled for shifts after the weekend. She had warned the employees that she would have to cut spending if the meals inside ended.

Kenya Britain, the manager of Row House in Harlem, said he hoped to capitalize on a partnership with a bar that had invested in radiators in a large outdoor space.

Jonathan Forgash, executive director of Queens Together, a restaurant group, said restaurants “throw ideas at the wall and see what sticks or works.” Some are reducing their menu offerings to keep the cost of food supplies and labor down, and still others are reorienting their dining halls into markets.

But the outlook is bleak. A survey of 6,000 restaurateurs by the New York State Restaurant Association found that more than half said their businesses were unlikely to be still in business in six months without any government help. The survey found that 78% expected more layoffs in the next three months.

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