Houston-area restaurants reopen Friday

After weeks of dine-in services halted due to stay-at-home orders, Phase 1 of Gov. Greg Abbott’s plan to re-open the state will get underway with stipulations for restaurants. The order states restaurants may only operate 25% capacity for dine-in services and must maintain social distancing practices.

HOUSTON – Businesses such as retail stores, movie theaters and restaurants were allowed to reopen on Friday for dine-in customers with 25 percent capacity.

The restaurants took steps to keep visitors and employees safe.

Gov. Abbott still urging everyone to continue to social distance, wash hands and wear a mask if they’re uncomfortable.

Cormier’s Kitchen and Cajun Cuisine, Spring

Cormier’s Kitchen and Cajun Cuisine could only serve 25 people at a time.

“We do have the crawfish, the gumbo’s and the jambalaya and the po’boys,” said Owner Kevin Cormier. “You’re not paying for all the bills, but it pays for most of them, and it keeps our employees working.”

Cormier said they’ll station a host outside the front doors so customers can wait outside.

“We spaced everything out already, everything 6 feet apart, we gotta close some tables down. These are all bolted to the ground.”

The Spot, Galveston

For those headed south for a weekend getaway, The Spot in Galveston was ready for business.

The restaurant posted pictures on Facebook and wrote, “Sneak peek of the 125 seats that we will open with at 11 a.m. Saturday. Looking forward to seeing all of our valued guests.”

Jackson Street BBQ, Downtown Houston

At Jackson Street BBQ, the smokers were heated up for 60 dine-in customers.

“Obviously we want to reopen,” said Owner Bill Floyd. “(We’re) disinfecting, wiping down after each use, all of our employees have been tested, everybody’s got masks, everyone is going to wear gloves.”

During the two-month closure, Floyd said, thanks to customers’ donations, they’ve delivered nearly 10,000 meals to first responders, including medical staff, officers with the Houston Police Department and firefighters with the Houston Fire Department.

“It’s been a dark 6 weeks and we’re ready for the sunshine,” said Floyd.

Irma’s Restaurant, Downtown Houston

“I love my customers and I miss them dearly,” said Irma’s Owner Irma Galvan.

Galvan said they’re excited to welcome guests at the popular eatery.

“We get calls every day. When are we gonna open? When are we gonna get the mole,” said Galvan.

The Mexican restaurant remained closed for two months, but now, they’re prepared to serve a little differently.

“We’re not putting things on the table. We’re gonna use paper linen and wrap up our silverware in little bags and stuff like that,” she said.

Galvan said people had already made reservations for this weekend.

Sizzle & Brew, Tomball

“For this weekend, we’re actually gonna go with disposable plates and cups and silverware and stuff like that trying to make people feel better,” said Sizzle & Brew Owner Brooke Mackin.

Only opened a year, Mackin said it’s hard to know if people will show up this weekend for the eggs, pancakes and mimosas.

“At least it’s moving in the direction to getting open,” said Mackin.

Snappy’s Café, Katy

“I’m just so happy that we’re getting to the start of the end of this,” said Clark Vanorman.

A rush for customers to land one of the 25 available seats at Snappy’s Café in Katy.

“It’s not normal yet but we are glad we can accommodate some people inside,” said Owner Alex Tsounakas.

The 20-year-old restaurant was taking a lot of precautions.

“We have hand sanitizer, as you see we’ve taped all the tables and we sanitize everything after the people leave.”

They also used disposable menus and condiments and every employee wore a mask.

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