After more than two months of serving nothing but takeout food and beverages, Flossmoor’s three downtown restaurants are poised to reopen for outdoor dining.
Flossmoor Station Restaurant & Brewery and the Bistro on Sterling will reopen for in-person dining on Friday. Dunning’s Gourmet Market & Deli is closed for vacation this week and will start offering outdoor dining on June 2.
Illinois restaurants have been closed to in-person dining since March 17 after Gov. J.B, Pritzker announced a stay-at-home order in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Pritzker said last week that some restaurants across the state would be able to open for outdoor dining as early at May 29.
Carolyn Armstrong, who owns Flossmoor Station with her husband Dean, said she expects that about 30 tables will be open for dining on the restaurant’s outside deck, firepit area and dog run. Tables must be at least six feet away from each other and the restaurant is also taking additional precautions, she said. Servers will wear masks and patrons will also be asked to wear masks except while they are eating..
Customers will be seated on a first-come, first served basis, Armstrong said. If customers need to wait for a table, they will be asked to walk around outside rather than sitting or standing at the restaurant.
Armstrong said Flossmoor Station’s owners and staff are overjoyed at the prospect of again serving patrons in person.
“It means the world to Flossmoor Station and our staff to reopen for al fresco dining in our spacious and unique Craft Beer Garden,” she said in a statement to the H-F Chronicle. “We have developed such a close bond with our loyal customers, and while we appreciate their continued pick-up and delivery orders, we miss them joining us on the site of this incredible venue, Flossmoor Station, with the best Craft Beer Garden in all of Chicagoland.”
Rich Cairo, co-owner of the Bistro on Sterling, said tables will be available for dining on the sidewalk outside the restaurant. Dunning’s will also have tables on the sidewalk when it reopens next week.
Under the state’s guidelines for reopening restaurants, diners will be limited to parties of six or less. Social distancing is to be practiced in the outdoor dining areas.
The reopening of restaurants is permitted provided the state’s number of COVID-19 cases continues on its current downward trajectory.