Mayor de Blasio extends Open Storefronts program to restaurants and bars
In a minor win for restaurateurs this week, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that restaurants and bars can now use a portion of their sidewalk space to accept takeout orders and sell pre-packaged food items as part of the city’s ongoing Open Storefronts program. The program — which previously allowed non-food businesses to use a portion of their sidewalk “to display merchandise, sell goods, complete transactions, and provide queuing areas” — now extends to the city’s restaurants and bars until at least next fall.
The Open Storefronts extension comes as a growing number of restaurants and bars repurpose their indoor dining rooms as markets, grocery stores, and wine shops to keep their doors open through the winter. Those goods can now be sold from the sidewalk space in front of businesses, so long as they maintain an eight-foot path from the curb and do not use the sidewalk space of adjacent businesses.
Mayor de Blasio initially launched the program in October as a way to help businesses increase their sales during the holiday shopping season. Previously set to expire on at the end of this year, the Open Storefronts program is now extended through September 30, 2021.
In other news
— A growing number of restaurants are offering prix-fixe meals for takeout and delivery on New Year’s Eve. The Chinatown location of Jing Fong is accepting pre-orders for a Peking duck and dim sum dinner that serves four to five ($135). Cool-kid wine bar the Four Horsemen has drinks covered with its cheese, cocktail, and natural wine party packs ($115).
— Ganso Ramen, the popular but now-closed Boerum Hill ramen restaurant, has returned as a ghost kitchen operating out of Sarabeth’s in Tribeca. The restaurant is delivering to customers in Tribeca, Soho, and the Financial District to start.
— Local architecture firm the Rockwell Group is adding space heaters to the outdoor dining structures it constructed for businesses on Mott Street in Manhattan’s Chinatown, according to a spokesperson for the company.
— Hunky Dory owner Claire Sprouse announced that the neighborhood restaurant will temporarily close for the winter after service this Sunday, January 3.
— The Wall Street Journal sticks up for radicchio.
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