Huntsville restaurants navigate dining options during surge of coronavirus cases

Restaurants told WAAY 31 how they're trying to keep health and safety a priority.

Posted: Jun 27, 2020 10:55 PM
Updated: Jun 29, 2020 8:53 AM

With the state adding nearly 900 coronavirus cases Saturday, we wanted to see how local restaurants are responding to the increase in new cases.

WAAY 31 spoke with some managers about their approaches to staying open right now.

Restaurants like the Brass Tap have patio seating available to customers who want the dine-in feel without feeling crowded.

But at Phuket in Providence, the only seating option is outside and the owner told us he plans to keep it that way for the foreseeable future.

"So far, I think we are okay even with just the outside, because if you look at our patio, it's a pretty good size," said Furit Phornroekngam.

Phornroekngam is the owner of Phuket and as soon as coronavirus hit Alabama, they closed their dine-in services. That was three months ago, and he told WAAY 31 it'll stay that way until the pandemic is over.

Harold Smith is the general manager of the Brass Tap, and he is keeping both dine-in and patio services open to customers.

Restaurants already operate at 50% capacity and if he cut the size down even more to just outside, he couldn't afford to keep all of his staff.

"We don't want to have to do that to our employees because they suffered for over a month of being unemployed, so we really hope we don't have to do that again," said Smith.

Smith told us business has been slower since the pandemic started, but he's happy to see his customers again.

Although the number of cases keeps increasing, he wants people to take necessary precautions, like social distancing and wearing masks, so they won't have to cancel all their summer plans.

"We have big plans for the summer and we'd like to get back on track with our plans. We do live music here and we have a lot of things for outdoors planned you know," he said.

Both restaurants want to keep their doors open as long as they can, but they say it's not easy.

They hope the community will keep eating local while keeping health guidelines as a top priority.

"We need busy activity to keep it going. We cannot shut down again. We have to be safe and also be able to keep everyone here," said Phornroekngam.

At both restaurants, curbside pickup is still an option for a no-contact way to get your food.

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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 134231

Reported Deaths: 2357
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson19441349
Mobile13271291
Montgomery8778179
Madison775480
Tuscaloosa7496119
Shelby584951
Lee582961
Baldwin516550
Marshall390944
Calhoun346641
Etowah342047
Morgan325428
Houston278123
Elmore263247
DeKalb239120
Walker228483
St. Clair227837
Talladega212728
Limestone206120
Cullman188519
Dallas177426
Franklin175529
Russell17442
Autauga173825
Lauderdale168233
Colbert163626
Blount159415
Escambia158425
Jackson154611
Chilton153531
Dale135444
Covington134427
Coffee13078
Pike11879
Chambers115142
Tallapoosa114685
Clarke107717
Marion95729
Butler91339
Barbour8577
Winston73712
Marengo70820
Lowndes65327
Pickens65114
Bibb64210
Randolph63713
Hale62828
Lawrence60922
Geneva5995
Bullock59814
Cherokee59115
Monroe5818
Clay5707
Washington55613
Perry5407
Conecuh53111
Crenshaw53132
Wilcox53111
Henry4865
Macon48020
Fayette4438
Sumter43419
Lamar3632
Choctaw34612
Cleburne3396
Greene30315
Coosa1673
Out of AL00
Unassigned00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 187690

Reported Deaths: 2312
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Shelby30460452
Davidson26252298
Hamilton928791
Knox918175
Rutherford915088
Williamson516536
Sumner475896
Wilson341844
Putnam320139
Montgomery302244
Out of TN296825
Unassigned29145
Bradley289317
Madison280061
Sevier257015
Blount247723
Maury230923
Washington223935
Robertson219035
Sullivan212133
Hamblen188525
Tipton178118
Trousdale16517
Gibson160922
Hardeman154826
Wayne14905
Bedford132017
Dyer131813
Dickson123515
Cumberland117518
Fayette117418
Coffee116613
Weakley115719
Anderson115312
Henderson115322
Carter114728
Obion11389
Loudon11356
Greene112943
McMinn110025
Jefferson109714
Macon103520
Warren10267
Monroe102217
Lawrence101211
Hardin100516
Lauderdale95915
Haywood95418
Franklin9518
Lake9142
Roane8724
Carroll85819
Bledsoe8494
McNairy84218
White8139
Cheatham80610
Rhea79812
Hawkins78316
Cocke7419
Marshall7415
Overton7135
Smith69810
Johnson6752
Henry6139
Chester60910
Lincoln6031
Giles58017
Hickman5585
DeKalb55213
Crockett52919
Marion5187
Decatur5037
Fentress4713
Claiborne4405
Campbell4314
Polk38210
Grainger3633
Union3471
Benton3349
Jackson3175
Morgan3113
Unicoi2831
Cannon2800
Grundy2685
Humphreys2443
Sequatchie2293
Meigs2233
Clay2205
Houston2083
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Stewart1902
Lewis1851
Moore1641
Van Buren1600
Perry1490
Pickett1102
Hancock1063

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