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Dining Restrictions Creating Uncertainty For Local Restaurants

The Moth Cafe Edmonton

By Adel Ahmed

The Moth Café, a popular plant-based restaurant in downtown Edmonton, is hoping they still have a successful Valentine’s Day this year, taking note of the provincial dining restrictions.

Valentine’s Day is the time of year for chocolates, roses, and spending time with your significant other and can be an important time of year for local businesses like restaurants and cafés.

Jonathan Wales, the owner of the Moth Café, spoke to the significance of Valentine’s Day.

“[It can definitely] be important. Not as [beneficial] towards an income standpoint, but having that experience for customers [is key],” said Wales.

With COVID restrictions currently forcing restaurants and cafés to provide takeout orders only, there is a sense of uncertainty with what can happen moving forward if the government allows dine-in services or not.

“We’re not sure what will happen next because they can shut us down at any time,” said Wales.

When The Moth Café did have dine-in services for Valentine’s Day last year, Wales said the cafe would work to give their customers a valuable experience.

“We would take reservations. [We also spaced] out how people were arriving, so they did not have to wait in line.”

Wales said that the café would have roughly 12 to 15 parties for evening reservations alone.

The likelihood of people dining in cafés on February 14 is low this year. The Moth Café is preparing for the current restrictions to stay the same.

As far as promotions for Valentine’s Day, Wales did not have a complete plan yet. However, he said that there would be ‘takeout for two’ offers such as an entrée and a bottle of wine, which was frequently selling when the café was allowed to have dine-in customers.

“We don’t have it set out yet, but we are planning to have two meals. An appetizer, a dessert, and a bottle of wine,” said Wales.

The Moth Café is open for takeout or delivery Monday through Saturday from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. and on Sunday from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. They also feature recipes on their website.

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