Restaurants keep finding ways to reel in customers with dine-in closed

Local restaurant reopens

WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - With dine-in restaurant services shut down for the foreseeable future amid the coronavirus pandemic, some eateries are changing their focus to offer grocery items.

Business owners keep trying to come up with new ways to make money. Many of them resorting to curbside and delivery, but one local restaurant decided to add a few healthy options to their menu.

At Savor Southern Kitchen, they’re hoping a new form of food service will help them stay afloat.

“We kind of had to step outside of the box and wanted to find a way to reinvent the business," said Jeff Cousler, owner. "Not completely reinvent it but what can we add on to sustain an income for our employees.”

The popular restaurant shut down and reopened, thanks to the PPP grant. But, it’s a farmers market that the company hopes will bring in enough customers to keep up business.

“People love supporting local products, people love fresh products and I’m glad that savor popped up and expanded their business to have a mini, fresh produce section,” said Katie Hugs, customer.

The fresh fruits and veggies might not be around forever though. Cousler says the new model might find its way into everyday business after the pandemic has come to pass but, for now, it’s just a support system.

“Ideally we want to have this parking lot full with dine in customers but its something that we’re trying to get through this period when we don’t see an end in sight," said Cousler.

Cousler said they’ve looked to other restaurants and local farmers markets to figure out how to best operate theirs. They’ve still got their original menu also, but he’s just happy they were able to reopen their doors.

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