Las Vegas is based on hospitality. When travel is effectively interrupted and the entire events and entertainment industry is decimated overnight, this city – of over two million people, 300,000 of whom are directly employed in the hotel industry – hurts badly, and everyone who lives here does with it hurt. Even in the best of times, restaurants have wafer-thin margins at the mercy of factors they cannot control, and during the economic downturn they are among the first and worst hit.
The simple fact is that some of your favorite restaurants and bars just won’t reopen if life in Las Vegas gets a little “normal” at the end of this pandemic. It’s not all doom and gloom, however: there are ways we, as consumers, can help vulnerable companies and individuals make it through these unprecedented times. Here are some of them:
LCV / shutterstock
Keep ordering your breakfast, lunch and dinner
You probably panicked shopping like everyone else, but now that you have all those dried beans and fruit snacks, do you even know what to do with them? The good news is that delivery services like Grubhub, Uber Eats, DoorDash, Postmates, ChowNow, and Menufy are still up and running. Uber Eats has also waived shipping costs for independent restaurants, so you can order with the peace of mind that the delivery partner will no longer benefit from their low profit.
All remaining restaurants, bars, and coffeehouses that are still open offer execution and delivery. You can order directly from their own apps and websites, through a third-party service, or simply call them directly and place your order for fulfillment or delivery. Many offer their own free delivery service, and many others offer roadside pickup so you don’t even have to step a foot out of your car. Pizza Rock calls it their “Pizza Valet Parking” which is only available downtown. For details, see our full list of restaurants still open for execution and delivery.
You can also order prepackaged meals, meal plans, and meal preparation packages
Las Vegas restaurants were very inventive in the face of this crisis, offering prepackaged meals and pre-ordered menus for execution and delivery. Some of these you might not even expect, like the exquisite modern French restaurant in Chinatown, Partage, which now has full lunch and dinner menus that change every day and that you can order by the day or by the week (need to order the day before) around receive next day delivery). Others include:
- Honey Salt at Summerlin offers full family style meals that feed four people (choose from one of five dinner packages).
- Both Café Lola locations offer “Lola To Go” box meals with a variety of options including pastries, toast and sandwiches.
- At Cornish Pasty Co. you can order hot items as well as frozen pies for later. Palm Las Vegas is offering 25% off food and 50% off wine through March 31st.
- Food Preparation Las Vegas is still delivering its “Foodie Fit” healthy meal plans.
- The Paina Cafe offers Ohana Family Pack meals of stews, rice, potatoes, salad, and dessert.
- Pizza Rock now offers pizza meal sets that you can make at home.
- The Locale Italian Kitchen offers mix-and-match combination dishes with soups, salads, panini, pasta, pizza, antipasti, starters and side dishes.
- You can order bento boxes from Island Flavor 808, family-style trays from Bonanno’s New York Pizzeria, and all-day combo specials from Trattoria Nakamura-Ya.
Khourys fine wine and spirits
You can even order alcohol!
Garagiste is open to picking up its wonderful selection of small, sustainable wines as well as its cheese and sausage platters on the roadside. Also, they have partnered with Paradise Creamery to sell their vegan ice creams by the pint (see website and social accounts for available dates). Cured & Whey will also offer crates of fruit and vegetables soon.
Both Aces & Ales locations continue to sell groceries, bottled beers (known for their extensive collections of limited edition, rare, and white whale beers), and growler fillings for pickup and delivery. All pick-up orders receive a 50% discount on growler fillings and pizzas, as well as USD 2 off all starters (not available with delivery).
Contribute to a tip pool
All over the country, people are setting up Venmo tip pools and GoFundMe pages specifically designed to support the service reps who are hardest hit. You can find the Las Vegas virtual tip jar here or you can add it here. You can also support local servers and bartenders through the Go Tip ‘Em national tip glass. Even if restaurants with skeletal staff continue an emaciated form of operation, the servers that once relied on your dinner tips face incredible financial hardship and uncertainty.
If you’re curious about other ways to help displaced people and small businesses during this time, Food & Wine has a great variety of resources here.
Pay for future meals with gift cards and online contributions
These places can really take advantage of the money now. So show your support today by buying gift cards that you can use at a later date – it’s basically an interest-free loan when you need it most. You can shop directly through the restaurant’s website or app, or through third parties like ItsOnMe or OpenTable. If your favorite restaurant has an InKind account – a pretty ingenious restaurant funding program backed by loyal customers who prepay for meals – contribute or suggest opening an account.
The only project
Support a company that supports your community
Even at a time when everyone is struggling and mixed up, some companies go way beyond that.
- Food Preparation Las Vegas donates fresh, fully cooked meals to everyone in Clark County who are elderly or in some way immunocompromised.
- Milk + T is offering free no-questions-asked lunches to anyone in need and is also delivering free Boba kits to households with children currently battling cancer.
- District One offers first aiders 50% discount for roadside collection and seniors and disabled people 50% discount for free delivery (within a 5 mile radius).
- Aloha Kitchen serves kids free lunch Monday through Friday from 2:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.
- Paradise Creamery donates $ 5 from every “Play Pack” purchase made during its Garagiste pop-up to the COVID-19 Emergency Fund for Sex Workers in Las Vegas, an extremely vulnerable population that is often overlooked.
- Honey Salt has donated hundreds of meals to a new program called “Delivering with Dignity” that provides meals to the elderly and immunocompromised and their families who live in the same households.
- Kitchen table and kitchen table in the square offer free food for children.
- Buldogis is offering healthcare professionals and first aiders a 20% discount on all takeaway orders.
- Pinkbox Donuts delivers free donuts to first responders and healthcare providers and is currently up and running around the clock.
- Cafe Sanuki offers a free kid’s meal when purchasing an adult meal.
- Sparrow + Wolf is closed, but is currently running the #sparrowandwolfchallenge on Instagram for bartenders in Las Vegas: For every cocktail video uploaded with the hashtag, they donate a meal to a first responder. Your goal is 2,000.
And while they have since closed indefinitely, Esther’s Kitchen previously served free meals to everyone recently laid off and their families, and Stacks & Yolks and Griddle Cakes served children free meals after the Clark County School District closed. put vulnerable children who depend on school meals at risk in order to continue to be fed.
Although they are currently closed for business, Jolt Coffee Co. has prepared free meals for seniors. Please keep these places in mind and support them now with gift cards or your patronage later when they reopen.
Also, consider sponsoring the Just One Project mobile pantry and Three Square Food Bank who work in the hyperdrive to make sure nobody goes hungry in the Las Vegas Valley.
Buy bread and fresh baked goods
Some restaurants are still open to a much limited capacity and only serve a few very specific items. You can pre-order your freshly baked bread a day in advance at Saga Pastry + Sandwich in Henderson, as well as at Pizzeria Monzu, and order bread and pastries at open bakeries such as Café Breizh, La Belle Terre Bakery, Rooster Boy Café, La Luna Tea & Dessert Bar and Sugar Bees Bakery among many others.
Wear your support on the actual sleeve
Buying goods is always a great way to support a small business (as well as artists and musicians), and right now a $ 25 T-shirt or $ 8 mug is going to go a long way towards increasing profits. Check out the merch pages of your favorite places and people and fill in.
Stay up to date on the latest developments via social media
At the rate at which things have changed daily, what was true yesterday may not be true today. Follow the social accounts of your favorite places to stay up to date with the latest changes in hours, offers and operations. Since this is indeed “social” media, and it really is the only form of social contact we have left, like and share these posts so more people know who is open and can patronize these companies too.II.studio/Shutterstock
Leave a positive review
Love it or hate it, Yelp (and other review platforms like Google Reviews) can make or break a business. Once that’s all over, these companies will struggle to get customers back in the door – lots and lots of positive reviews can help, and you likely have some free time.
Let your voice be heard
While it’s unclear whether Change.org petitions will ever make a difference, it can’t hurt to try. In this case, the point is to take emergency action to save America’s restaurants because we want this massive and essential piece of our economy to survive, and because we all want to run out when it’s over. Also, call our senators and representatives to demand that restaurants be part of the federal stimulus plan. You can reach the Capitol switchboard at 202-224-3121.
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Nicole Rupersburg is a thrillist.