ITHACA, NY (WSKG) – Bars and restaurants were hit hard when COVID-19 required them to shut down last spring. With new restrictions in effect in New York, and concern that Thanksgiving may lead to superspreader events, business owners are worried.
Marty Mattrazzo, owner of The Farmhouse Brewery in Owego, said the 10 P.M. curfew put in by the state has not affected his business, but the potential of further restrictions or a full shutdown concerns him.
“If it gets hairy again, and they need to shut us down again, at least allowing off site sales is gotta [sic] be a minimum. We are still losing money every month,” Mattrazzo added. “So yeah, we hope by the time this ends we’ll still have some money in the bank and we‘ll still be viable,” Mattrazzo said.
Being both a bar and a brewery, Mattrazzo thinks the Farmhouse has been faring better than other bars. To make up for their empty tap room, the business has focused on canning, bottling, and selling their beer curbside in growlers
“I feel bad for bars,” he said. “I mean some bars at the beginning were doing take home cocktails. That was something they could do to try to make some money.”
The federal aid Farmhouse has received covered expenses for just two months. To help bars and restaurants muddle through this pandemic, Mattrazzo said the Federal Small Business Association, or SBA, should work with states to offer more low to no interest loans.