Now is the time to support the restaurants you love. Nearly all small businesses are reeling from the coronavirus pandemic — diners, bistros, taquerias, four-star destinations, bakeries, izakayas, breweries. Restaurants have always been there for you; it’s now time to rally for them. Here are some ways to do that.
Check in on your favorite restaurants directly.
Each business is a little different, so make the effort to see how they are asking for help. That could mean a direct call, or simply checking a website or Instagram page, or even sliding into their DMs. (For example, an increasing number of restaurants are raising funds for employees.)
Make your voice heard. Contact your representatives.
Many restaurants will not be able to survive this crisis without sweeping aid from federal, state and city governments.
- Call your senator at (202) 224-3121. Call your local mayor or governor.
- Note: The Resy Help Desk has compiled a COVID-19 Contact List of Government Officials by State.
- Save Local Restaurants: The newly formed Independent Restaurant Coalition (IRC), led by Tom Colicchio and other prominent chefs, is trying to create a united voice to advocate for aid and policy.
- Sign the petition: Change.org: Save America’s Restaurants
- Sign the petition: Change.org: Relief Opportunities for All Restaurants
- Feeding America — Feeding America works with food banks across the country to provide food to people in need. During the COVID-19 pandemic, there is even more need for food banks.
- Additionally, American Express has pledged $1M to support organizations that are working towards COVID-19 relief efforts. When you use Membership Rewards® points through JustGiving towards a donation to Feeding America, American Express will match the dollar amount of each donation — up to $1,000,000 in total donations.
- Order’s Up — Make a single or continuous contribution to a restaurant to help keep it financially viable. They in turn will cook and deliver a meal to those in need.
- Frontline Foods (National) — Donate money, fund local restaurants, and help feed hospital workers.
- Restaurant Workers Relief Program (National) — The Lee Initiative works with restaurants across the country to provide meals for restaurant workers who have lost their jobs or are experiencing work disruptions.
- Rethink Food (NYC) — Rethink Food provides food to those in need: Donations of both money and food are accepted.
- Note: American Express cardholders are able to use points for all or part of their donation when they use their Membership Rewards-enrolled card at checkout.
- Restaurant Workers’ Community Foundation — RWCF has established a Restaurant Workers COVID19 Crisis Relief Fund to immediately direct money to organizations leading on-the-ground efforts in the restaurant community,
- Support Workers in Crisis/One Fair Wage — Tipped workers and other service workers were already struggling. OFW is providing cash assistance to restaurant workers, car service drivers, delivery workers, personal service workers and more who need the money they aren’t getting to survive.
- Unsung Restaurants (BOS) — A fund established to help small and especially immigrant-owned restaurants.
- Restaurant Employee Relief Fund (National) — The NRA is putting 100% of the fund’s proceeds to grants to restaurant workers demonstrating financial impact from COVID-19.
- Note: American Express cardholders are able to use points for all or part of their donation when they use their Membership Reward-enrolled card. More info here.
- Hook Hall Helps (DC)
- Southern Smoke Foundation (TX)
- Texas Restaurant Relief Fund (TX)
- USBG Bartender Emergency Assistance (National)
- World Central Kitchen (National)
- Hospitality United Tee (CHI)
- La Cocina Emergency Relief Fund (SF)
- The United Sommeliers Foundation (National)
- Filipinos Feed the Frontlines (National)
- SF New Deal (SF)
Order takeout and delivery.
Many restaurants across the country are trying to stay open with new delivery and takeout services. It’s unknown how long this forced experiment will be sustainable, but in the short-term, many are hoping it can keep the lights on.
Resy City Guides to Takeout and Delivery: We’ve compiled map-based lists in many major markets of Resy restaurants that have shifted to takeout and delivery options.
- New York: Manhattan | Brooklyn and Queens
- Burlington, VT
- Dallas/Fort Worth
- Long Island/Hamptons
- Los Angeles
- New Jersey
- New Orleans
- Portland, ME
- Portland, OR
- San Francisco/Bay Area
- South Bay (L.A.) and Orange County
- Washington DC
Other great takeout initiatives and guides from around the country:
- New York: Eater, Infatuation
- Los Angeles: Los Angeles Times, Eater
- Chicago: Dining at Distance, Chicago Tribune
- Bay Area: San Francisco Chronicle, Edible SF
- Portland: The Oregonian
- National: Great American Takeout
Also: American Express Platinum Card Members who are eligible for a monthly Uber Cash Benefit can use the Uber Cash for Uber Eats orders. When ordering, use the “leave at the door” delivery feature for no-contact deliveries.
Find other ways to give restaurants money.
Gift certificates: Many restaurants are offering some type of gift certificates via various platforms.
- Shift4 Cares: Purchase one or more gift cards, and Shift4 will contribute an additional 5%.
- Rally For Restaurants: Gift cards via Toast.
- Help Main Street: Find gift cards for over 10,000 businesses.
- Give Local: Gift cards for restaurants across the country.
- Dining Bonds Initiative: Buy a $100 gift certificate (“dining bond”) for $75 at top restaurants across the country.
Products and Merchandise: If your favorite restaurant sells t-shirts or pantry items like hot sauce or jams, chances are you can buy them now. Wine bundles for a cause are being offered, too. (Some other outlets have some great collections, too.)
Just a few of our favorites:
- Nyum Bai, OAK
- Kismet, LA
- Sqirl, LA
- Kopitiam, NYC
- Rose’s Fine Food, DET
- ATOBOY, NYC
- The Four Horsemen, NYC
- Land & Sea Dept., CHI
- Fat Rice, CHI
- Pleasantry, CIN
- Le Pigeon, PDX
- Konbi, LA
- Diner, NYC
- Elena, MTL
- Nom Wah, NYC
This story will be updated. Please let us know any further suggestions.