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Jun 12, 2020. 23 comments

Do we actually need Ruby Tuesday?

Do we actually need Ruby Tuesday?

While the pandemic has forced a massive number of restaurant closings, large corporate chains with deep holdings and access to venture capital have largely been spared. That is not the case for Ruby Tuesday, which has announced that it will be permanently closing 150 of its locations.

As reported by the industry publication Restaurant Business, the closures account for more than a third of the...

23 Comments

Jun 10, 2020. 8 comments

Startups are clamoring to profit from contactless restaurant orders

Startups are clamoring to profit from contactless restaurant orders

Yet another interesting byproduct of the COVID-19 pandemic has been our changing relationship to technology in our daily lives. Games like Animal Crossing that double as social interaction among friends have caused many users’ daily screen time to spike (coupled with unemployment). And because podcasts are a form of entertainment that goes hand-in-hand with a daily work commute, American...

8 Comments

Apr 29, 2020. 11 comments

Chicago restaurant pivots to meal kits forever

Chicago restaurant pivots to meal kits forever

Fat Rice, a Macanese restaurant on Chicago’s northwest side, opened in 2012 and became one of the city’s most beloved restaurants for its delicious food (especially its peri-peri chicken and namesake dish arroz gordo), laid-back atmosphere, and comparably affordable prices. It expanded into neighboring storefronts and added a cocktail bar and bakery (and, most significantly,

Portuguese egg...

11 Comments

Apr 29, 2020. 10 comments

Waffle House is once again open to the public in Georgia

Waffle House is once again open to the public in Georgia

It’s already well established that Waffle House fares well in times of crisis—there’s an actual (informal) FEMA metric called the

Waffle House Index that judges the severity of a given disaster by whether Waffle House locations are staying open. In the event of something like an impending hurricane, each Waffle House location is assessed for its likelihood to be impacted, its workforce’s...

10 Comments

Apr 25, 2020. 14 comments

Looking to support your local restaurants? Special orders might help.

Looking to support your local restaurants? Special orders might help.
FeaturesFeaturesStories from The Takeout about food, drink, and how we live.

Instagram clued me into the coronavirus-related closing of a restaurant where I worked last year. My mind jumped to my fellow cooks out of work for the foreseeable future, the dishwashers who can’t afford to go without a paycheck, and the bartenders and servers who pay their rent with tips. Admittedly, I...

14 Comments

Apr 21, 2020.

An ode to the restaurant regular, from a chef who misses them

An ode to the restaurant regular, from a chef who misses them
FeaturesFeaturesStories from The Takeout about food, drink, and how we live.

In the second week of March, around the same time the coronavirus pandemic shut down schools in my state, I spoke with a woman who’s worked at the Dunkin’ in my hometown for more than a decade. Normally our town’s most popular pit stop, it was nearly empty when I entered. As she poured a coffee, she told me that in the...

Apr 20, 2020. 8 comments

Shake Shack gets $10 million loan from the government, then returns it

Shake Shack gets $10 million loan from the government, then returns it

As COVID-19 restrictions continue to put the restaurant industry in a chokehold, these businesses require not only the support of customers in their communities, but also (and perhaps most of all) the assistance of the federal government. A few weeks ago, the CARES Act relief bill was passed by Congress, and within it, the PPP, or Paycheck Protection Program, which promised $349 billion in...

8 Comments

Apr 10, 2020. 10 comments

$3,700 lining the walls of Georgia bar donated to employees

$3,700 lining the walls of Georgia bar donated to employees

Does a faded, autographed dollar bill with 25 staples in it count as legal tender? It’d better, after all the work that restaurant owner Jennifer Knox put into prying thousands of them off the walls of her business. CNN reports that The Sand Bar, a popular tourist destination in Tybee Island, Georgia, has been feeling the economic impacts of COVID-19 restrictions just as much as any other...

10 Comments

Apr 10, 2020. 18 comments

Ask The Salty Waitress: What are the rules for tipping in a pandemic?

Ask The Salty Waitress: What are the rules for tipping in a pandemic?
The Salty WaitressThe Salty WaitressSalty Waitress is The Takeout’s advice column from a real-life waitress that will teach you how not to behave like a garbage person while dining out—and maybe in real life.

Hello Salty Waitress!

I appreciate your column especially for guidance on tipping etiquette. I have a disagreement with a housemate on tipping etiquette when we go to pick food up directly...

18 Comments

Apr 10, 2020.

Last Call: What are some ways to enhance the takeout or food delivery experience?

Last Call: What are some ways to enhance the takeout or food delivery experience?
Last CallLast CallLast Call is The Takeout’s online watering hole where you can chat, share recipes, and use the comment section as an open thread. Here’s what we’ve been reading/watching/listening around the office today.

Yesterday, we reported the most delightful story of a brewery in Virginia that’s sending delivery people out bearing six-packs and

dressed as Left Shark from Katy Perry’s...
Apr 09, 2020. 10 comments

The curious connection between health food restaurants and cults

The curious connection between health food restaurants and cults
FeaturesFeaturesStories from The Takeout about food, drink, and how we live.

My favorite breakfast spot in Chicago was Victory’s Banner. It was a quirky, cheerful cafe in Roscoe Village with yellow walls, a diverse waitstaff wearing saris, pictures of an older man weightlifting and smiling on every wall, and sugar packets that had quotes on the back of them like “listen to your heart...

10 Comments

Apr 09, 2020. 5 comments

Reply-all fiasco somehow leads to happy ending, for once

Reply-all fiasco somehow leads to happy ending, for once

The 21st century has introduced professionals of all types to a certain kind of workplace calamity: the reply-all email chain. We at The Takeout have even covered this type of inescapable hell

in the past , and advise you all to think twice before hitting the most dreaded button in your email client’s compose window. Don’t hurt those you love.

This week, Plate reported on a reply-all-pocalypse...

5 Comments

Apr 08, 2020. 4 comments

Anyone can enjoy the cuisine of Passover, and these chefs highlight their favorite dishes

Anyone can enjoy the cuisine of Passover, and these chefs highlight their favorite dishes
How Do You Take Yours?How Do You Take Yours?In How Do You Take Yours?, The Takeout solicits staff and outside expertise for secret tips on improving one dish.

It’s a little hard to envision Passover dinners without big groups of people gathered around the table and groaning platters of food. The traditional crowded seder meals largely won’t be happening this year, thanks to social distancing...

4 Comments

Apr 03, 2020. 4 comments

NYC’s most posh restaurant reopens to feed first responders

NYC’s most posh restaurant reopens to feed first responders

Few fine dining restaurants are as well-regarded, or as expensive, as Eleven Madison Park in Manhattan. Helmed by Swiss chef Daniel Humm, this three Michelin-starred temple of white tablecloth gastronomy requires a nonrefundable deposit of $729 when you reserve a table for two, and the optional wine pairing costs a cool $175 per person. While Eleven Madison has been ranked the best restaurant...

4 Comments

Mar 31, 2020. 14 comments

Chefs never let good food go to waste—instead, they get creative

Chefs never let good food go to waste—instead, they get creative
FeaturesFeaturesStories from The Takeout about food, drink, and how we live.

It’s summer 2010, the end of the month, and food costs are high. One of the sous chefs at Pittsburgh’s Pennsylvania Macaroni Company tells me I need to get rid of an excess of giardiniera from the kitchen. Giardiniera, you probably know, are the spicy pickled vegetables commonly found on Italian beef sandwiches, and...

14 Comments

Mar 27, 2020. 13 comments

Every restaurant in America should redesign its website right now

Every restaurant in America should redesign its website right now
FeaturesFeaturesStories from The Takeout about food, drink, and how we live.

The COVID-19 pandemic and stay-at-home orders across the country are

wreaking havoc on restaurants and bars . With their dining rooms closed, many of these establishments have pivoted to takeout and delivery models in order to stay open through the current quarantine period, but meal delivery can be a minefield of

13 Comments

Mar 24, 2020. 5 comments

NJ restaurant takes out $50,000 loan to keep employees paid, so please order all their baked ziti

NJ restaurant takes out $50,000 loan to keep employees paid, so please order all their baked ziti

With restaurant owners scared they’ll have to shutter, and employees being laid off in scores,

some have questioned how the restaurant industry can survive this period of discord. Luckily, there are people like Bryan and Michael Morin out there. The co-owners of Federico’s Pizza and Restaurant in Belmar, New Jersey took out a $50,000 line of credit to keep their employees paid during the...

5 Comments

Mar 21, 2020. 5 comments

Restaurants are transforming into grocery stores before our very eyes

Restaurants are transforming into grocery stores before our very eyes

When I first met my husband, who was also a chef back in 2005, we shared a dream of one day opening our own gourmet shop. We’d make sandwiches and prepared foods, sell cheeses and fine foods, and do plenty of catering to keep the lights on. We kept our pennies in a jar, and dumped our life savings into our dream: Robicelli’s Gourmet Market, which opened with long lines and plenty of local...

5 Comments

Mar 18, 2020. 5 comments

So do you order takeout or not?

So do you order takeout or not?
Hot LinksHot LinksWe spend way too much time on the internet

This week has brought back two of my most enduring memories of 9/11 and the immediate aftermath.

The first is of sitting in a blood bank in Boca Raton, Florida. I’d waited most of the afternoon to even get inside; the line was so long, they took my name and number and told me to go home for a few hours. The rest of us there had filled...

5 Comments

Mar 17, 2020. 2 comments

Arnold Schwarzenegger, Whiskey the pony, and Lulu the donkey have a message for you

Arnold Schwarzenegger, Whiskey the pony, and Lulu the donkey have a message for you

The governors of Illinois, Ohio, and California have announced that all the restaurants in their states are closed for the time being. You can still order takeout and delivery, but there’s no more dining in. Arnold Schwarzenegger, former Mr. Olympia, Terminator, and governor of California has taken it upon himself to spread this message in language even a donkey and a pony can understand:

2 Comments