Restaurants altering buffet service, some only offering menu items

May 23, 2020 | 12:09 am

Updated May 25, 2020 | 2:17 pm

File photo by AP Imagery

While restaurants were able to open dine-in service at 33% capacity this Friday, those with buffets are having to take even more unique approaches in abiding by state guidelines.

Ole South Barbeque and Shoney’s are both currently offering buffet service to customers “cafeteria style.”

“We are doing our full buffet,” said Owner Greg Floyd. “We have staff that are in masks and gloves, serving the customer as they walk through the line and tell our staff what they want.”


Floyd said Ole South is opening dine-in services at limited capacity, and they also added 64 outdoor seats under a tent. While employees are required to wear masks, customers are not.

Shoney’s also opened their doors Friday and is offering the same option — the buffet is open but food is served by staff. The restaurant is also offering curbside pickup and carryout for those who aren’t comfortable eating indoors at this time.

Briarpatch Restaurant will reopen Tuesday under regular business hours. The restaurant will allow customers to order salads from the buffet through an order form.

“The customers will be able to customize their salads using a checklist and the server will bring the salad to them at their tables,” said Beth Buntin, an employee at Briarpatch.

New China Buffet Restaurant continues to offer takeout service but their buffet remains closed.

Two other local restaurants are keeping their buffets closed for now.

Moonlite Bar-B-Q plans to open June 1 with menu service only. At this time, there is no date in place for reopening the buffet.

IDK Family Restaurant is similarly not offering buffet until further notice due to the state-mandated stipulations being hard to reach, they said.

The restaurant will be serving a menu-style dinner with large meat portions and all-you-can-eat vegetables that customers can choose.

“We are serving a homestyle buffet at the table,” the restaurant said via social media. “We are offering a large selection of meat portions, up to three choices of vegetables, bread, and a dessert.”


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May 23, 2020 | 12:09 am

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