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Curbside alcohol sales a welcomed boost for struggling Las Vegas restaurants

Alcohol time-limited permits now available
Posted at 10:23 PM, Mar 26, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-27 13:04:08-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — The city of Las Vegas has announced a new plan to let restaurants sell alcohol along with curbside meals. These 30-day limited permits could provide a big boost for an industry that's been walloped by the coronavirus pandemic.

13 Action News was at Tivoli Village on Thursday, where customers are hard to come by right now. It's a reality many shopping plazas are dealing with, which is why today's announcement was so welcome for the bars and restaurants staying open right now. It allows them to resume selling alcohol and allows the customer to bring the party home with you.

RELATED: City of Las Vegas, Henderson gives restaurants ability to sell alcohol curbside

"It hit hard and it hit quick," said Sheryl Best, director of guest relations at Echo & Rig in Summerlin. She's not talking about the usual crowd of customers who come for happy hour.

Echo & Rig is among the many restaurant across the country that has been forced to close its doors to customers because of the novel coronavirus.

"Honestly, the hardest part has been the staff. We were 175. We are now seven. So, constantly I'm always thinking about the people that were on our team, their families, how they're going to make ends meet, how they're going to take care of themselves," said Best.

The remaining staff is getting creative in order to pay the bills, offering lots of new grab-and-go options and the same premium cuts of meat customers have come to count on.

"Ribeyes, pork chops down here, I have tenderloins, I have skirt steak, just about everything we have on the menu pretty much," said Mario Shelton, head butcher at Echo & Rig, describing the large refrigerator display of freshly-cut meats.

But management admits, closing the bar has been a big loss for the business.

"It's just sad. We were excited about all the new things coming out, new wines, new mixology programs, and now it's just all come to a halt," said Best.

That's why Best thinks the city's new plan to allow restaurants to sell alcohol with curbside meals will be well-received by restaurants throughout Las Vegas.

"It's a different city and we need our people to listen to us. We need Washington to listen to us and just treat us a little bit differently than the rest of the country. And this thing last night with alcohol and being able to get those permits quickly is really going to make a huge impact and help our business," said Best.

Echo & Rig plans to offer a special selection of wine to customers with their orders. And as a business partly built on brunch, Echo & Rig also plans to offer customers a special on bloody marys and mimosas. For interested customers, they'll provide all the ingredients in sealed manufacturer's containers in compliance with city rules.

"It makes us feel good to be able to serve our community with a great product still, and it's keeping our team pumped for what's going to happen," said Best.

The city of Las Vegas has already started accepting applications for 30-day alcohol permits. It's renewable based on the duration of the coronavirus situation, and only available to businesses with an existing alcohol license (beer/wine, tavern, tavern-limited, etc.) and a food service license.

For restaurants like Echo & Rig that have already applied, they're hoping to be approved and start selling curbside alcohol as soon as Friday. Echo & Rig is open from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. currently.

To view the menu, click here. To place an order, call (702) 489-3525.