Buy a Meal, Save a Restaurant

Earlier this week I wrote about the need to save local bookstores, by ordering online or buying a gift certificate. Today, I’m reminded that local restaurateurs need the same kind of help.

Allyson Mace is the founder and publisher of Sauce Magazine, an indie title that covers the food scene in St. Louis. And what she is seeing is like a “slow motion train wreck.”

“We don’t know what’s going to happen. We don’t know how many friends and family members in the industry we’re going to lose through this, I know it’s going to be significant, probably,” said Mace in an interview with St. Louis news station KSDK.

Not only are the restaurants hurting, but Mace explains she lost her entire advertising base over the course of week. But she’s still thinking of others.

“Without restaurants, I don’t exist really,” Mace says. “And without Sauce the restaurants don’t get as much play in the market as they probably would like,” said Mace. “So, yes this is definitely hitting us. When you lose your advertising base in a day or over the course of the week, basically, it’s shocking and a little scary.”

Even though restaurants are open for take-out only, she’s asked owners to include copies of her magazine with take-out deliveries, and many have agreed. Mace is encouraging everyone to help out where they can.

“You know, you’ve got to take it at your own pace. You’ve got to feel secure in what you’re doing and how you approach the restaurants. If you want to support through the general funds that are happening around St. Louis like the Gateway Resilience Fund, which is a really big fund that’s going to help a lot of people, you can donate there. If it’s takeout, supporting your individual restaurants in your direct area, do that. If you’re going to buy wine, buy it from a local purveyor. If you’re going to buy food, buy it from somebody local who’s trying to keep their shop alive and their employees employed,” she said.

This country has held it together through crises of all sorts, and we’ll do the same now. So support local restaurants in any way you can. We all need to eat … and we all need to have these beautiful places in our communities when we can get back out and truly enjoy them.