Waltham Restaurant Owner Ready to Open

Michael Columba of Brelundi Restaurant says he's anxiously awaiting phase two of the governor's reopening plan

NBCUniversal, Inc.

The empty tables at Brelundi Restaurant in Waltham, Massachusetts, are ready for the return of customers.

“We’re doing about 10 percent of our business,” said owner Michael Colomba.

This popular spot in Waltham has been open for takeout only since mid-March. Colomba has had to lay off 30 people, from servers to cooks.

“It’s been devastating financially. Absolutely,” said Colomba.

The owner said he’s anxiously awaiting phase two of the state’s plan when restaurants can start to reopen. He said he’s ready to go now with outdoor seating.

Colomba plans to spread out tables, constantly wipe down menus and eliminate the use of salt and pepper shakers at the table. Staff will wear masks. He’s just waiting for the green light to reopen.

Boston has cleared several hurdles for restaurants that want to apply to serve food and alcohol outside once that's allowed in Massachusetts' reopening plan.

“I’m frustrated in a sense that we are outside,” said Colomba. “We could open. Technically we could be open outside. We can meet the guidelines of social distancing.”

He said he understands why the state is taking a cautious approach and is hopeful that when the doors do open, people will come back.

“People are resilient,” said Colomba. “You know, not everyone wants to cook every night, so I’m banking on that.”

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