BEEVILLE – Two days with little to no water has taken its toll on residents, and it has placed restaurants in a particularly unique situation.
“We have had to turn our inside restaurant into an outside restaurant,” said Pete Patel, co-owner of Stone Creek Bar & Grill.
Patel said they are operating more in picnic mode than restaurant style.
They closed Tuesday due to the water issues and opened partially on Wednesday. Things were slowly returning to normal by Thursday.
Just to stay open the few hours they did, they had to bring in water to cook with, ice from out of town for soft drinks and paper plates and plastic silverware.
“We had one couple from out of town freak-out because we were serving on paper plates,” he said.
But they had no choice. The lack of water meant they could not wash dishes.
Drinks, beyond sodas, too were limited.
“We could not serve tea or coffee and only had bottled water,” Patel said.
In the kitchen, they kept gallon jugs of clean water for washing hands and cooking.
“Our menu was limited,” he said.
The other problem is that fresh food only keeps so long, and if the restaurant is closed—there is no one there to eat it, and it will just spoil.
“You can only keep fresh food for a couple of days,” Patel said.
He said they plan to continue keeping the restaurant open as best they can until the water issues are resolved.
“We will continue to use plastic forks and knives and boil water until an announcement is made.”
They aren’t alone as they tackle the limitations this water shortage has placed upon them.
Patel said that nearly everyone closed on Tuesday because of the water problems.
The Dog and Bee Pub also closed, as did Chili’s and many others. Only a handful of fast-food restaurants were able to stay open, and even those were only able to serve a limited menu, he said.
By Thursday though, he said, most of the restaurants were reopened.
The question of reimbursement for businesses was discussed during a special called meeting by city council Wednesday morning.
Councilman Jimmy Martinez asked, “All these businesses that have been shut down because of a lack of water, they want to know who is going to compensate them for a loss of revenue.”
Mayor David Carabajal responded, “That is an excellent question, but at this time it is probably not the appropriate time to ask.”
“But people need to know an answer.”
“That is the reason I am saying it is not the appropriate time,” the mayor responded. “We need to figure out the details.”
Jason Collins is the editor at the Bee-Picayune and can be reached at 358-2550, ext. 121, or at editor@mySouTex.com.