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Trillium shuts Fenway taproom and outdoor dining

Boston Restaurant Talk reports.



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I've walked by their new Landmark location a few times in the past few weeks in the afternoon. Perhaps it's different in the evening but around lunch there would be no problem with social distancing. Almost no one was there and lots of room on the grass to be safely away from other people. The indoor food court has been closed.

I wonder if Trillium is happy for an excuse to close a site which isn't getting much business.

I'd feel a lot safer outside where people can move around vs seated anywhere.

Voting closed 11

Trillium-Fenway opened last October, and had only a few months open before everything in the world changed. I doubt anyone there is "happy" for an excuse to close.

Voting closed 43

I know many servers who hate being asked to come into work. They are scared for their health and would rather remain on unemployment. They fear if they refuse to come back to work they'll permanently loose their jobs and won't get unemployment.

Trillium might use the forced closure to get a rent waiver.

Or maybe there are tears. All I know is there was very few people drinking beers the few times I went by.

Voting closed 17

It's possible that they didn't seem busy because they have a strict social distancing policy in place. Reservations are required on the Resy app and patrons were asked not to show up early. All purchases were contactless,using the Toast app, tables were spaced well over 6' apart. Staff all wore masks and gloves. Tables were disinfected between patrons.

I felt 100% safer there and at Turtle Swamp than I did at Dorcester Brewing, where I waited for takeout from M&M Ribs. While they use the Toast app for orders, the tables there are not 6' apart. But because they have food, they will be allowed to remain open, as will Cisco Brewing's beer garden in the Seaport, which does not appear to be enforcing social distancing if pictures on social media are accurate.

I don't have the answer about what is right to keep/closed. Trillium has a large following and will probably be okay. I don't feel as confident about smaller outfits like Turtle Swamp surviving.

ETA: Trillium isn't closing the Fenway spot; you can still pick up orders of cans and merch there.

Voting closed 22

You’re not sure if a bar would be busier at night than the afternoon? Yes, it is. I work in the building there, it's a lot busier at night. Whether you agree or not that bars should be open now or not it's kind of disingenuous to say you saw it in the afternoon and it wasn't busy so therefore it probably wasnt doing well. That's classic trump, put a bunch of qualifiers in half baked statements.

Voting closed 20

As a restaurant owner & as someone that enjoys dining out, I fail to see the logic behind the governor’s order of requiring food to be purchased with alcohol. How is this keeping people safer? Masks keep people safer, social distancing keeps people safer, and as painful as it’s been for my business not allowing people to sit at bar seats keeps people safer. But what is the point of requiring someone to order food if they want to have a drink? Previously if a couple of guests came in and want to have a drink we bring them to a table that is socially distant from other tables and they have their drink. As long as all the other rules are followed it should be allowed. All this is doing is hurting businesses. How often have you gone out to eat and grabbed a drink either before or after at a different restaurant? People do that all the time and restaurants depend on those incidental sales. Those sales are now gone unless you order food. And the ambiguity of what constitutes “food” is ridiculous:
“Food must prepared in house, must be ordered at the same time as the initial drink, must be enough food to sufficiently serve the number of people at the table”.
It seems this new rule was directed at the 1% of restaurants that normally don’t serve food, but the other 99% of restaurants are being punished. Did the governor’s office consult with any restaurant leaders on how this would affect their businesses before they pulled the trigger on this? Again, as long as restaurants are following all the other rules why does it matter what people are ordering?

Voting closed 27

I think the idea is that people usually go to restaurants in smaller groups, usually with people from their own household, and they're eating food, which is necessary to survive. (And yes, of course you can also eat food at home.)

Drinking at a bar or brewery is more of a social activity and is purely discretionary, and people are more likely to meet friends and mix with different people in close quarters. So it's less necessary, and higher risk for spreading the virus.

Voting closed 28

how is that different from the same people going out and ordering two beers each, while being responsible about masks and distance?

what if i don't want food, but i'm acting responsible about having a beer on a patio?

Voting closed 0

It's not about safety. It's about pushing the limits of what is acceptable for the folks in charge to tell you what to do.

Voting closed 5

I think places like Trillium Fenway and Night Shift Owl's Nest Allston prove your point. Seating at these places can be very comfortably spread out. They certainly aren't what the governor was picturing when he said no bars. I'm sure he was picturing those goofballs crowding Southie bars at the beginning of the outbreak.

I certainly don't want those kind of bars open.
But unfortunately for these breweries they are stuck with this food metric that doesn't accurately measure their safety.

Voting closed 13

Beer gardens are way safer than indoor dining yet the state prefers the later. Very dumb. The presence of food being served does not scare off the virus.

Voting closed 37

Maybe safer than indoor dining, but hard pass for me being around 50+ unmasked people talking loudly and drinking around me, even if outdoors. I had to sprint into my building on Sunday night after 15+ maskless drunk bros strolled out of Trillium onto Brookline Ave, screaming racial slurs and marching up the sidewalk...

Voting closed 8

Advanced research has found that the highly selective virus knows whether you have a plate of food in front of you or just a pint.

Voting closed 7

correct, food is not the cure, but when people are drinking multiple drinks (encouraged, since businesses want more of your cash) on empty stomachs they tend to make poorer decisions, like forgetting to wear masks when getting up from the table, and mixing with patrons not in their household. the staffs also come from all over, from all different living situations. it’s not hard, sheesh.
i’ve been in the business 20 years and have been home since march. 10 of my friends had parents die, most with zero co-morbidities. 3 friends lost grandparents—i know, they were old so their sacrificial death is fine because people have to drink socially

Voting closed 9

or you can hold your booze better and not act stupid. i'm nowhere near there after three drinks.

Voting closed 0

Trillium was doing it right. Making sure that their customers were wearing a mask before allowing them to enter. Problem is that some on their way to and from drinking beer do not wear a mask. One drunk woman suggested I hold my breath when she rushed into the elevator in a nearby residential building.

Just being outside sitting sometimes six to a table isn't a vaccine against receiving or infecting others with COVID 19. Those who are inebriated or "just feeling good," can endanger those of us.

Voting closed 7