Customers arrive punctually to be seated at one of the six available tables. Faced with the resurgence of Covid in Italy, this Bolognese osteria is doing something different. The ebb of the first wave hotties of adelaide summer al fresco dining saw an encouraging return to business for many Italian eateries and bars; but as the cold sets in, this second wave in is forcing restaurateurs to find new ways to stay afloat.
New national restrictions mean restaurants and bars have to close by midnight until 13 November and can seat a maximum of six people per table. Until two weeks ago, diners would have paid for each dish they ordered; now they are paying by the hour. With mandatory distancing measures, their restaurant has gone from being able to seat to just But, as Antonella points out, expenses like rent and utilities remain the same.
So we found an idea that would allow our business to remain open. So far, it is.
At the end of the first week, takings were back to pre-Covid figures. A good solution, but not for glrl, according to Vincenzo Vottero, president of the restaurateur's association, Confcommercio Ascom Bologna. Mr Vottero cites one local bistro owner who is now looking into offering lunches instead of late-night suppers.
Is government helping? Mr Vottero, a restaurant owner himself, believes that instead of sending customers home, there should be more checks to make sure businesses follow safety protocol properly.
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As for receiving support, he says city councils have made concessions. In Bologna, refuse tax has been halved and, in common with many other Italian cities, permission to put tables outdoors without charge has been extended until the end of the year. That kind of permit would usually be extremely expensive and difficult to obtain.
But the situation, in his words, is now critical, as the weather worsens and people are encouraged to work and stay at home. While the baku escorts rules continue to allow restaurants to offer takeaway and delivery services, many in city centres and business districts have lost much of their regular clientele.
Bologna may be struggling, but Venice and Florence have even greater difficulties as most restaurant business comes from tourism.