New York Times: Is This the End of Tipping?

New York Times: Is This the End of Tipping?. “During two enormous crises — a public health emergency and an economic crash — restaurant service workers have found themselves double-exposed. Those who have been able to keep their jobs have felt compelled to keep working, though they know the risks of long hours surrounded by maskless customers. Many say their average tips have declined, while they’ve been saddled with the added work of policing patrons who aren’t social distancing, or as one service worker put it, ‘babysitting for the greater good.’”

‘Call the pros’: Chick-fil-A helps direct gridlocked traffic at S.C. drive-thru COVID-19 vaccine site (Fox 11 Los Angeles)

Fox 11 Los Angeles: ‘Call the pros’: Chick-fil-A helps direct gridlocked traffic at S.C. drive-thru COVID-19 vaccine site. “No business can master a drive-thru like Chick-fil-A, and a restaurant manager is getting high praise for using the company’s method to help workers at a COVID-19 vaccination site after a computer glitch caused a traffic gridlock.”

TMZ: Roscoe’s Chicken & Waffles Maskless Customer Returns With Gun … ‘Put The Chicken In The Bag!!!’

TMZ: Roscoe’s Chicken & Waffles Maskless Customer Returns With Gun … ‘Put The Chicken In The Bag!!!’. “We’re told he’d initially walked in without a mask, and got into an argument with staff when they asked him to put on one. Cops say he refused, and did leave when the staff asked him to do so. But, when he returned armed … he walked through the back kitchen and demanded the cook put the food in a bag. And, get this … on his way out the door, the suspect allegedly grabbed extra syrup for his meal.”

SF Gate: Did shutting down outdoor dining contribute to California’s COVID-19 surge?

SF Gate: Did shutting down outdoor dining contribute to California’s COVID-19 surge?. “There has been no such linkage between outdoor dining and COVID-19 transmission, but California banned the activity in most of the state in early December, despite being one of the few states with a winter climate that would support it. Despite the ban, California has had one of the worst winter COVID-19 surges in the country, which begs the following question: Is it possible that shutting down outdoor dining made the state’s surge even worse? Dr. Monica Gandhi, an infectious disease expert at UCSF, believes it’s highly likely.”

The Denver Channel: Industry expects 10,000 restaurants to close in next 3 months

The Denver Channel: Industry expects 10,000 restaurants to close in next 3 months. “There is arguably no industry in the US that has been harder hit by the coronavirus pandemic than restaurants. A combination of restrictions placed on restaurants and public health experts advising the public to avoid restaurants has resulted in a decline for many eateries. The National Restaurant Association said it expects that 10,000 restaurants will close in the next three months, based on a survey of its members.”

USA Today: Burger King rolls out feature to let customers order straight from Google search, Maps, Google Pay

USA Today: Burger King rolls out feature to let customers order straight from Google search, Maps, Google Pay. “Burger King really wants you to have it your way, even by ordering from a Google search. The fast-food chain said it will allow customers, starting Dec. 21, to order pickup or delivery straight from Google search results. Customers can also order directly from Google Maps or Google Pay.”

Washington City Paper: The Unusual Case of the Five Cookies and $1,000 Fine at Dirty Goose

Washington City Paper: The Unusual Case of the Five Cookies and $1,000 Fine at Dirty Goose. “Dirty Goose had five cookies on its menu last week, but the Alcohol Beverage Regulation Administration investigator who visited the establishment didn’t have a sweet tooth. Following a Nov. 27 inspection, ABRA fined the gay bar on U Street NW $1,000 for violating one of the city’s most peculiar policies. Businesses holding alcohol licenses must ‘offer a food menu at all times containing at least three prepared food items’ in order to seat customers during the phased reopening process in D.C.”

KCAL: Business Owner Says Restaurants Are Being Unfairly Targeted By Coronavirus Restrictions

KCAL: Business Owner Says Restaurants Are Being Unfairly Targeted By Coronavirus Restrictions. ” A restaurant owner who was forced to shut down because of coronavirus restrictions is frustrated after a film crew was able to set up outdoor dining for its workers right across from her restaurant. Angela Marsden, who owns Pineapple Hill Saloon and Grill, said her anger isn’t toward the movie industry, but because she believes restaurants are being unfairly targeted by Los Angeles County health orders.”

Billy Penn: New map lets you track Philly restaurant closings — and hopefully reopenings, too

Billy Penn: New map lets you track Philly restaurant closings — and hopefully reopenings, too. “ClosedinPHL is a project from Foobooz founder Art Etchells. It displays a map of recent restaurant closings, with details about each one. You can sort closings by month, click on a marker to find out if the closure is intended to be permanent or temporary, and keep tabs on a spot’s current status.”

The Atlantic: Don’t Eat Inside a Restaurant

The Atlantic: Don’t Eat Inside a Restaurant. “The unfortunate ubiquity of mucus is why restaurants, it brings me no pleasure to report, are contributing to the spread of the coronavirus. Indoor public places, including restaurants, played a significant role in the spread of COVID-19 this spring, according to scientific analyses of cellphone data. In a September study, people who tested positive for COVID-19 were more than twice as likely as those who tested negative to report eating in a restaurant recently. Talking with someone who has COVID-19 for 30 minutes or longer—about the time between your bloomin’-onion appetizer and molten-chocolate dessert—more than doubles your odds of catching it.”

Mother Jones: Hygiene Theater at Restaurants Is Creating Endless Plastic Waste

Mother Jones: Hygiene Theater at Restaurants Is Creating Endless Plastic Waste. “…it’s not clear exactly how many restaurants have switched to disposables. But extrapolating from pre-pandemic studies of California restaurants, a midsize restaurant with 30 seats went through 17,800 disposable cups and utensils in a year. Multiply that by 520,000—the number of US restaurants that the consulting firm McKinsey estimates survived the COVID-19 shutdowns—and you get more than 9 billion pieces of trash in one year. And bursting landfills aren’t the only problem: The uptick in plastic restaurant waste, advocates point out, will be especially acute in Black and Brown communities.”

The Guardian: Food couriers denied toilet access at UK’s top chains during lockdown

The Guardian: Food couriers denied toilet access at UK’s top chains during lockdown. “Some of the UK’s biggest restaurant chains, including McDonald’s, KFC, Nando’s, Subway and Wagamama, have been illegally denying toilet access to the couriers that have helped keep them in business during the lockdown. Couriers claim government laws stipulating that people making deliveries should continue to have access to loos during the pandemic are being widely flouted at food outlets currently restricted to takeaways only.”