Inside America’s first ‘swab and sit’ bar: New York restaurant charges diners $50 for a COVID test before inviting them in (that’s one way to beat the lines at the clinic!)
- Diners been pictured taking a coronavirus test before entering a NYC restaurant
- The pilot program was launched at the venue on Tuesday evening
- City Winery will require guests to test negative for COVID-19 before dining in
- It is intended to promote safe indoor dining at the weather grows colder
- Guests will pre-pay $50 each for the test when making a reservation online
Diners have began taking a rapid coronavirus test before entering a New York City restaurant as part of a pilot testing program.
The scheme, which launched last night, required guests to take the test before being seated at the City Winery in the Meatpacking District.
It is understood that the venue will be the first in the nation to create a ‘100% COVID-tested space’.
Images show diners being administered a Covid-19 test by a medical professional. Other patrons are seen wearing protective face coverings as they queue to get a test before entering the venue.
A medical professional administers a COVID-19 test to enter City Winery on Tuesday
Patrons of the restaurant, City Winery, get a covid test to enter. City Winery will be the first restaurant in the nation to create a ‘100% COVID-tested space’
Patrons wear protective masks during the coronavirus pandemic while waiting to get a COVID-19 test to enter City Winery
Guests who want to sit in at City Winery in the Meatpacking District will be required to pre-pay $50 per person for the test when making an online reservation.
The pilot testing program launched on Tuesday in what may be a first for the metropolis.
‘A COVID-19 test is one of the only solutions to get patrons inside restaurants for the next five months until the springtime,’ Founder and CEO Michael Dorf said in a press release.
A woman takes a COVID-19 test to enter City Winery on Tuesday in New York City
Patrons wear protective masks during the coronavirus pandemic while waiting to get a COVID-19 test to enter the venue
Patrons dine at City Winery after taking the mandatory Covid-19 test. The pilot testing program launched on Tuesday in what may be a first for the metropolis
‘Given the change of seasons, finding the next level of safety and comfort for people to dine indoors is critical for us today.’
Would-be diners will be given a wellness check then a nasal swab by a health professional upon arrival at the door and can have a drink while they wait the 10 to 15 minutes for results.
If the test comes back negative, they will be admitted into the restaurant where standard mask wearing and social distancing rules will still apply.
Positive test results will be sent to a lab to be verified and the patron will be turned away.
The restaurant and live music venue will continue to provide outdoor dining options in areas like the one pictured above
Founder and CEO Michael Dorf said the tests are necessary to get customers indoors and tide the business over until spring. Pictured: Dorf hosting a show at the venue in July 2019
It is hoped the test will help persuade diners that it’s safe to sit indoors at the weather gets colder and outdoor dining is a less popular option. Pictured: One of the bars at City Winery
The new measures will only be in place on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, the rest of the week the venue is open test-free and outdoor seating is also available.
Jambands.com reported that all of the venue’s employees will also be required to test negative before coming into the restaurant for their shift to ensure that everyone on the premises has tested negative that day.
The full $50 fee guests are required to pay for the tests goes directly to the testing company, City Winery’s press release stated.
The venue already conducts temperature checks, santizes tables and chairs between each party and offers contactless dining.
The pilot scheme comes as New York recorded 5,282 new cases on Wednesday, brining the city’s total to 579,000.
Three more deaths were recorded in the city where 24,149 people have been killed by the virus.