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Soup & Such adjusting to phase 2 reopening guidelines

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Posted at 3:37 PM, Jun 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-21 18:27:38-04

During phase one of reopening, restaurants could not have self-service buffets.

Now in phase two, Soup & Such has its same menu, but its staff serves customers from the buffets.

"We have your plate on our side of the glass," said Antonia Craighill, co-owner of Soup & Such. "We used to be buffet or classified as a soup and salad buffet, so it was all self service. Now, it's more soup and salad cafeteria style."

During phase one of reopening, the business did take-out and delivery, and now it’s back to being a restaurant.

"We're technically allowed to be at 75 percent, but we don't have the space," said Mike Craighill, Antonia's husband and co-owner. "So the tables are spaced out six feet apart as the directions continue from phase one into phase two. Increased cleaning procedures. Our team wears masks whenever they're around customers or they're prepping food."

And the work has changed for employees.

"Part of the adjustment is for our team members doing it like customers would do," Antonia said. "The majority of times customers tell us that was a better salad than I would've made."

"It always tastes better when someone else makes it," Mike Craighill said.

"I have the home made tomato and basil with feta cheese in it," said customer Sam Pease. "It's very tasty."

"You got to adapt and that's the big thing adapting to the conditions that are going on," said Laren Fortney, who also said he has enjoyed the food at Soup & Such.

"We have not heard what the conditions are for self-service to be returned," Mike said. "That's a big question for us and the survival of this sort of business model, not just for us but for all buffets. Right now we're kind of operating on the assumption that self-service won't return before the crisis is over."

The Craighills also own Soup and Such at Shiloh Crossing and the Velvet Cravings bakery downtown.

They have been able to rehire all employees, 22, who wanted to return to work.