New York City’s dining scene regains a shred of normalcy today with the return of outdoor dining. While many restaurants had preempted the city’s official announcement last week and set up tables and chairs outside, several others are scrambling to get things ready for this new reality. For places that already had outdoor dining permits, things will mostly be the same with the addition of new social distancing rules, like keeping tables six feet apart. But for others, there’s a new online application process with restaurants being instantly approved, the city says.
Already, dozens of restaurants across the city have set up shop outside including Thai Diner in Nolita, Brazilian spot Pao de Queijo in Astoria, and Taco Mix in Sunset Park. Many others are waiting to see what the first few days will be like. NYC has been relatively strict and slow with its reopening plan, but many parts of the country are seeing a rise in COVID-19 cases as more people return outside. Though studies indicate that there is a lower exposure risk when outdoors, the level of risk involved with patio dining is contingent on restaurants following strict social distancing and other safety guidelines.
Still, as more people feel safe hanging out outdoors, restaurants are eager to meet the demand. Be sure to call your favorite neighborhood spots to see if they have plans for outdoor dining.Read More