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Coronavirus: Montreal restaurants adjusting to COVID-19 restrictions

Quebec restaurants feeling the pinch of province’s coronavirus measures
With the province's COVID-19 cases increasing daily, Premier François Legault is asking people to take even more precautions including limiting their time in restaurants.

Montreal restaurants are feeling the effects of the novel coronavirus disease, known as COVID-19.

Some are suspending their business while others are trying to ride out the crisis unless they’re forced to close.

Many big chain restaurants in Montreal are changing their methods of serving clients.

St-Hubert restaurants, for example, are only offering take out and home delivery, while some Starbucks have posted signs telling people they’re not allowed to sit and stay inside.

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“We are making decisions today if we are going to close some or all,” said Peter Sergakis, a Montreal bar and club owner.

READ MORE: COVID-19 cases in Quebec climb to 39 as premier asks non-essential establishments to close

On Sunday, Quebec Premier François Legault asked that establishments including bars, cinemas, gyms, ski hills and more, close indefinitely.

In Vaudreuil-Dorion, McKibbins Irish Pub is staying open — at least on the restaurant side of things.

“Our main goal is to make sure that all of our loyal costumers that are in the area have a place to come eat if they can’t make food on their own or can’t get to a grocery store,” said Dave Ritchie, McKibbins’ general manager.

While the restaurant focuses on serving those in need, precautionary measures are in place to make sure the location is safe and people get to eat meals without having to worry.

“Essentially no one needs a beer to live, whereas people do need to eat in these times. We actually reorganized the entire dining room, the entire bar, we removed tables chairs, just to remove the possibility of people coming in when we are at capacity” Sean O’Connell, co-owner of McKibbins told Global News.

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Being an Irish pub, the cancellation of St. Patrick’s day events in and around Montreal due to the virus comes as a double whammy.

READ MORE: Quebec rolls out temporary financial aid program as number of coronavirus cases climbs to 50

“It’s tough because St. Patrick’s week is our make or break week. Irish pubs wait for this week all year long but I’m confident that the government will put in some systems to help us out,” said Nick Piliereau, co-owner of McKibbins.

The head chef says he’s been putting in long hours to ensure the kitchens are properly disinfected so the food he is serving comes out perfect for customers.

READ MORE: Montreal-area food banks struggle to cope with COVID-19 restrictions

“Usually working in the kitchen, you’re occupied mentally as well as physically but this has ramped it up a little bit,” said Ryan Page, McKibbins’ head chef.

McKibbins says it’s going to try and stay open, but if the government says they have to close their doors, they’re ready to cease all operations.