Food

Northern Virginia Restaurants and Bars Can Begin Limited Indoor Dining on Friday

Food and drink businesses can fill their seats up to 50-percent capacity

Coronavirus 2020

About Coronavirus 2020

Washingtonian is keeping you up to date on the coronavirus around DC.

Northern Virginia food and drink establishments can begin indoor service at half-capacity on Friday, June 12, as the region moves into phase two of its reopening.

“I know that recent events have overshadowed the pandemic, but it is still very much with us. That said, our health metrics are looking positive,” Virginia Governor Ralph Northam said in a press conference today. The percentages of positive tests and hospitalizations have trended downward over the past week, he said.

In this next phase, the state will require restaurants, bars, and other businesses to maintain six feet of distance between people at tables and cap the number of total patrons at 50 total. No bar seating is allowed, and game areas, play spaces, and dance floors must remain closed.  Single use, disposable menus must be discarded after each customer.  All employees will wear masks and should do temperature checks prior to their shifts. The state recommends that businesses accept reservations, but that is not required. More guidelines and regulations can be found here.

Most of the state entered into phase two this past Friday, with the exception of Richmond and Northern Virginia, where there have been concentrations of Covid-19 cases. “The metrics from those areas also look positive,” Northam said.

DC and the Maryland suburbs remain at phase one status, meaning only socially distanced outdoor seating is allowed for now. They could begin easing restrictions as soon as next week.

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Jessica Sidman
Food Editor

Jessica Sidman covers the people and trends behind D.C.’s food and drink scene. Before joining Washingtonian in July 2016, she was Food Editor and Young & Hungry columnist at Washington City Paper. She is a Colorado native and University of Pennsylvania grad.