Culinary no-no #659


Close to 700 Culinary no-no installments and I’ve mentioned the Bartolotta Restaurants several times, almost always in a positive manner. There was the time they dropped duck off one of their menus. My jab was mild and good-natured. And when they went too avant-garde with the menu at the newly decorated Bacchus. Otherwise I’ve been so nice.

On March 19 Chef Paul Bartolotta made an announcement on Facebook:

We have quickly realized it would not be enough to “flatten the community spread curve.” That is why I have made the painful and difficult decision to cease operations, including curbside service, at all Bartolotta Restaurants starting after service tonight, March 19, 2020, until further notice.”

This week I received an e-mail from Bartolotta that read like he was grinning from ear to ear when he or someone else on the payroll wrote it.

Slowly, the Bartolotta restaurants are phasing in their re-opening according to the chef.

I want to start by saying how incredibly grateful we are for the continued support of our community and our partners, and I want to share how thankful we are for our team members who did not give up on us during this time. 

This has been a challenging time for our community, but it thrills me to tell you that the first of our locations, Ristorante Bartolotta dal 1993, will reopen on Wednesday, July 8.


That means all kinds of Bartolotta goodness is back!

Hold on.

There’s more.

Outdoor and indoor seating has been arranged in a way that allows for privacy and distance; and additional safety measures include:

  • Face masks required for staff members and guests
  • Reservations required (reservations will be held for 15 minutes) and temperature checks upon entry
  • Touchless payment options and QR codes to view menus on smartphones
  • Custom safety partitions between tables and booths
  • UV-C technology that actively seeks and destroys microorganisms in the air and on hard surfaces
  • Enhanced cleaning of dining tables with every new reservation

Last weekend our family went to a very nice, popular restaurant and dined inside. While the staff wore masks ( I get that) patrons were not required.

There were no temperature checks.

There were no partitions.

Nothing was roped off.

There was nothing blocking a customer from the bartender at the bar.

Worked just fine.

Ristorante Bartolotta in my view is going too far. Overboard restrictions will keep folks away from there and other places that claim to be acting in the interest of safety. Problem is they have killed one of the characteristics that appeal to restaurant customers. Practically gone is an inviting, open, accommodating atmosphere and experience.

Other Bartolotta restaurants have yet to open their doors.  Here’s hoping when they do they take it a bit easier.


The Banana Trick and Other Acts of Self-Checkout Thievery

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ICYMI, Culinary no-no #658

One thought on “Culinary no-no #659

  1. Pingback: Culinary no-no #660 | This Just In… From Franklin, WI

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