BALTIMORE — We know businesses have struggled during the pandemic and they need help now more than ever.
At Aldo's Restaurant in Little Italy, a sign is now posted saying they’re hibernating for the winter.
The restaurant is putting a pause on indoor dining as the owner calls on congress to help restaurants and business like his before it’s too late.
“This is our great depression era event," said Sergio Vitale, owner of Aldo's.
A restaurant that’s been a staple in the community for more than 20 years, but the pandemic has forced the business to make tough decisions.
“We decided that the best way we can ensure that we can stay in business in 2021 was to hit a pause button and hibernate for the winter.”
Vitale says the restaurant is closing indoor dining until further notice.
He says with the city’s virus restrictions limiting restaurants to 25 percent capacity with curfew of 10 p.m., it made no sense for him to continue to stay open.
“Sadly the most challenging part of this entire thing, the most agonizing part of making this decision was laying off staff just before Christmas,“ he explained.
Aldo’s was the second restaurant to make this tough call in the past week.
Gunther and Co. in Brewer’s also temporarily closed its restaurant for COVID-19 related reasons.
“The real challenge here is because we don’t have a congress that has its act together to pass everyone knows is desperately needed.”
Vitale says he will reopen again soon for take out and he’ll also allow people to rent out the restaurant for a private dining experience, but again he’s urging congress to get a stimulus deal done now.