LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Dessert is still on the menu, even during the quarantine. Frozen custard shops like Nielsen's and Luv-It say they're staying open to help the community and keep their employees working.
It's not ideal having to yell your order across Nielsen's Frozen Custard shop in Henderson, but owners Howard and Amanda Zayon say it's all part of the plan to stop the spread of COVID-19.
"We wear gloves all day long. We change them from when we go from one procedure to the next. My husband and I are the only ones in contact with the public. Our staff stays behind the counter," said Amanda Zayon.
For the first time in their five years of owning Nielsen's, the Zayons have had to keep customers from coming inside. Instead, the couple is taking turns bringing orders out to customers at the curb, where they're also processing payments.
"We've done everything possible to make them [customers] comfortable and make sure they feel protected and our staff protected.
The Zayons are making sure their employees are protected and paid. At the outbreak of the novel coronavirus pandemic, they decided not to lay off any of their 14 employees, arguing they're willing to sacrifice some potential profits so their employees can continue to work and provide for their families.
"We didn't know when they would receive some kind of source of income, so we wanted to make sure that our staff was sustained, in case they needed to contribute to their families. For us, it wasn't a difficult decision. I really have a lot of faith that we'll survive and that's just who we are as a company. We are family," said Amanda.
The Zayons say business at Nielsen's is down at least 50% during this pandemic, but spirits are up. They credit the customers and the custard.
"We would love for you to come in and try it. It's definitely a game-changer. We aren't food for the hips, but we are food for the soul," said Amanda, with a smile.
Nielsen's is now open from 12 p.m. - 9 p.m., seven days a week, and it's located at 9480 S. Eastern Ave #100 Las Vegas, NV 89123. For more information and to view Nielsen's menu, click this link.
Times are not nearly as tough at custard competitor, Luv-It Frozen Custard. Despite a lack of tourists, management at this strip staple says business is booming.
"It's actually picked up a lot. It's probably doubled or tripled our sales. We've had a lot of people coming and stocking up on quarts along with getting custard just to feel better about everything that's going on, I guess," said Brandon Tiedemann, manager and fourth-generation owner of Luv-It.
Tiedemann believes Luv-It Frozen Custard can continue this recent success, arguing custard is the key to a happy quarantine.
"Just to brighten up their day and put a smile on their face and see other smiling faces, especially if people haven't been out and seeing other people lately. Just get a nice smile from a friendly neighbor that's doing the same thing, had the same idea," said Tiedemann.
Luv-It Frozen Custard is open 1 p.m. - 10 p.m. Sunday-Thursday, and 1 p.m. - 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. It's located at 505 E Oakey Boulevard, Las Vegas, NV 89104. For more information and to view Luv-It's menu, click this link.