For today’s Q&A with a local business owner navigating the COVID-19 emergency and safety-related restrictions, we hear from Rose Bonura of Rosie, the popular eatery on Elm Street that’s doing a brisk business in dinner pickups. Here’s our exchange.
How are you all doing there?
We are hanging in with curbside delivery and everyone is healthy, thank God. We are taking temperatures when people [staff] walk in, and everybody has to wash their hands. And so far, everybody is good. We are going to close to put down a much needed tile floor in our kitchen. I think we are going to close the day after Easter.
How long will that project take?
Three weeks, unfortunately. I am biting the bullet and I am hoping that when we reopen, it’s going to be business almost as usual, and having faith that this will all be OK. That the money spent will be OK.
What is your feeling on whether or not this is something you can outlast?
The town has been so supportive of us and so amazing in the sense that people are coming and calling and asking what can we do and how can we help you. I have not started a GoFundMe or anything because I don’t really feel good about that right now. I just want business. People have been really good about buying gift cards and getting takeout. I am posting every day on Instagram and using every ounce of my power to post photos every day to show what we have going on the menu. I am very positive that town will go out and support us, even if it’s a reduced amount of business. I think it will come back. I am just trying to stay positive about that.
What are your most popular items?
Our dinners to go have been super popular, which has been a blessing form all of this. We figured out that, OK, that is what people want, so we will continue to do that when we reopen. We’ve had rib dinners, meatloaf meatballs and tomato sauce. All kinds of comfort food. It’s been a really great response so we are felling like it’s going to be OK.
What is your message to customers?
Don’t forget about us. We will be back with a fresh kitchen floor and I cant wait to see everybody again. I am literally missing the smiles and the good wishes and the little faces eating pancakes all the little kids coming, playing with the toys. I am missing that so much and I just wait to see everyone again.