‘Quietly Optimistic': New South Florida Restaurants Opening Amid Pandemic


Some South Florida restaurant owners are hoping the worst of the coronavirus pandemic is behind us, with some moving forward with pre-Covid plans and cooking up new concepts.

Nick Sharp's Bay 13 Brewery and Kitchen in Coral Gables had been in the works before the pandemic hit.

"We didn't really have a choice other than to keep going ahead," Sharp told NBC 6.

According to the National Restaurant Association, more than 100,000 restaurants in the United States have closed permanently during the COVID-19 crisis, the vast majority fixtures in their communities.

Although there's plenty of risk, Sharp said he's not nervous.

"We're sort of quietly optimistic that regardless of what happens in the future we’ll find a way to navigate through it," he said.

Navigating through a COVID-19 restaurant opening means trying to secure plenty of outdoor seating and taking extra safety precautions.

"It definitely was not in our plans and our team had to pivot a lot and think deeply about how we wanted to open during this complex time and how to do it in a safe way," said Doral Yard's Della Heiman.

At Doral Yard, multiple vendors make up the space and are taking a gamble. But they feel so far the community has been receptive to the new concept.

"We have a really long-term vision to be part of the downtown Doral community and to build culture and really bring people together," Heiman said. "Now more than ever people are really craving ways to connect."

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