Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti has extended the city’s Al Fresco program until the end of 2020. The program was designed to help restaurants during the coronavirus pandemic by turning public spaces like sidewalks and parking lots into outdoor dining areas. The 90-day Al Fresco permits were set to expire at the end of August.
Friday’s announcement is not a surprise, given that indoor dining is still not allowed in California. According to Fox-LA, Garcetti claims the program enabled restaurants to rehire employees and increase their revenue. The Health Department approved 1,486 Al Fresco permits since it began in late May. Restaurants can download the new permits on the City of LA website.
And in other news:
- Orange County was removed from California’s list of counties being monitored for the virus, reports the Los Angeles Times. Orange County’s positive tests remained at 5.4 percent, which is below the state’s maximum threshold of 8 percent.
- Los Angeles Magazine profiled local amateur and professionals bakers, who put their skills to the marketplace by creating and selling their breads. The list includes M. Georgina’s pasty chef Hanna Ziskin’s House of Gluten, and San Pedro Sourdough.
- The Long Beach Post put a spotlight on coffee cart Cafablanca. Long Beach’s roving 1950s-style business touts a refurbished Astoria espresso machine, and utilizes a donation-based model that support humanitarian and social causes.
- In Long Beach, Local Hearts Foundations hosted a “buy-out Pedro” event for deaf street vendor Pedro Castellano.
Local Hearts Foundations is hosting a “buy-out Pedro” event for deaf street vendor Pedro Castellano. The group has also raised funds for the paletero whose struggled during the Covid pandemic. @LongBeachPost pic.twitter.com/CEju0dP14H— Sebastian Echeverry (@onlyc_bass5) August 22, 2020
- The Long Beach Post tackles the challenging issue of staffing at restaurants during COVID-19. Even though Southern California maintains a talented pool of cooks, sous chefs, and pastry chefs, restaurants are having trouble filling the gap.
- Garcetti extends outdoor dining program for LA restaurants to end of year [Fox-LA]