Restaurants in Philadelphia are allowed to open their dining rooms today for the first time since March, when a statewide shutdown was ordered to slow the spread of COVID-19. Similar to outdoor dining, which has been permitted since mid-June, indoor dining in Philly comes with a list of restrictions designed to minimize risk.
Most talked about is the 25 percent seating capacity limit, which caps the number of customers a restaurant can serve at once. In addition, only four people can sit at a table, and tables must either have 6-foot-high partitions between them or be arranged so that there’s 6 feet of space between diners at different tables. Bar seating is not permitted.
Mask wearing is mandatory: Keep it on whenever you’re not sitting at a table (it’s a good idea to put it on whenever a server approaches, too). Servers are required to wear both masks and face shields. Menus can be disposable paper menus, app-based, or written on a chalkboard.
Below is a non-exhaustive list of Philly restaurants opening for indoor dining this week. Some are jumping right into regular hours, while others are starting with a few days a week. Several spots require reservations — given the rules discouraging lines and crowds and the limited capacity, it makes sense to make a reservation whenever possible.
Restaurants (and diners) strictly following COVID-19 safety guidelines reduces but does not eliminate risk. For updated information on coronavirus cases in Philadelphia, visit the city’s website.
Steak 48 (opening September 15)
Midtown Village/Gayborhood/Market East/Washington Square West
Reading Terminal Market (the Center Court seating area is open. Counter seating is not.)
Old City and Society Hill
Continental (the Rittenhouse location is open as well)
University City and West Philly
Dim Sum House by Jane G’s (the Rittenhouse location is open as well)