These Two Regional Restaurants' Dining Rooms are Officially Open
The latest regional restaurants opening their dining room doors after the coronavirus are neighborhood staples. Brinker International Inc., who owns Chili's Grill & Bar and Maggiano's Little Italy, announced that although sales were down, as of June 8, 82% of their restaurants are now available for dine-in customers, according to Nation's Restaurant News.
The company operates 53 Maggiano's and 1,622 Chili's locations across the country. Even with the sudden shift to takeout orders only, Brinker CEO Wyman Roberts says cash flow is good. Chili's is only 10% away from its profits of a year ago. Maggiano's saw a 25.6% decrease in sales compared to this time last year. Still, the company has been able to pay all their rent as well as pay off some debt.
Since they started the reopening process recently, Roberts says Chili's gained back 70% of sales from dine-in customers. Other restaurants haven't been so lucky. Several, including Chuck E. Cheese and Red Robin, could file for bankruptcy soon. Ruby Tuesday permanently closed 150 locations, and TGI Fridays say they have to close 20% of their 386 restaurants.
Maggiano's fellow Italian bistros Brio Italian Mediterranean and Bravo Italian Cucina already saw 10 locations close in January before the coronavirus. Their parent company announced in April that 71 more locations would shut their doors.
Another local favorite hit hard? Independent restaurants. By the end of the year, there could be 85% less of them in your neighborhood, according to the Independent Restaurant Coalition. A federal aid package could be coming, but one way you can help them out now is to order food directly from them instead of on delivery apps.
Of course, if you're headed to a restaurant to dine in, make sure you follow property safety precautions, like wearing a mask correctly inside a restaurant.