When was the last time you ate inside a restaurant? It’s been so long for some of us that we can’t remember, but that could change soon as restaurants in Sacramento are reopening their dining rooms to customers. Going out to eat won’t be exactly like it was before and health and culinary experts say we should still be cautious. Here’s what they recommend when dining at a newly reopened restaurant.
- Don’t dine with people you don’t live with – Dr. Shira Doron, an infectious disease physician, advises not eating with anyone you wouldn’t be spending time within six feet of or anyone you wouldn’t wear a face mask around. “Ideally, your dining companions should be your household members,” she explains.
- Don’t show up with symptoms, even mild ones – Your slightly sore throat or low-grade fever probably won’t keep you from enjoying your meal, but it could affect others. Dr. Doron recommends staying away from others when you have mild symptoms including body aches, cough, and sore throat.
- Don’t forget to do your homework – Get familiar with the CDC’s recommendations so you know what proper safety precautions restaurants should be following. Also check out your local government’s health authority website to get information on regulations in your area.
- Don’t just show up – Most states are reopening in phases, so restaurants may still be operating at less than 100% capacity. Since they can’t serve as many customers at a time, you probably can’t just show up and expect to be seated right away. Your best bet is to call ahead and ask how crowded they’ll be and if you can make a reservation.
- Don’t stay too long and don’t be impatient – The longer you’re in a communal space, the higher your risk for coming in contact with coronavirus. So don’t linger around the hostess stand waiting to be seated and don’t hang out at your table long after you’ve finished eating.
- When it comes to food, sharing is no longer caring – This means if you want to split a dish with someone, ask your server to have the kitchen do it before bringing it to the table.
- Don’t forget to tip – It’s always important, but if the service was excellent and you can afford it, now’s the time to tip generously.