Warwickshire business owner says 'Curfew is latest kick in the teeth for my business'
5th Aug 2021 | Local News
An award-winning restaurateur in Warwick has warned the latest Government measures announced to control the pandemic could prove the final straw for his business.
Alex Clayton was forced to close Tasca Dali Spanish restaurant at the start of lockdown, resorting, like many others, to offering meal deliveries to try and keep his business alive.
Since then, despite being allowed to reopen on July 4th, the business has adapted to months of continuous revisions to the guidance including an enforced 1m self-distancing rule, reducing customer capacity to a third, and a raft of stringent COVID-safety measures.
But this week it was announced that pubs and restaurants have to adhere to a 10pm curfew and offer table-only service as part of a new raft of measures aiming to stem another sharp rise in positive cases of the virus.
Alex has described today's further tightening of COVID-19 rules as a 'kick in the teeth for the restaurant and pub sectors' and is planning to open his doors earlier to compensate for the lost hour. He is also appealing to his customers to keep supporting him through the latest changes to trading.
He said: "We have already had a capacity for diners reduced by 55% and now we shall lose the late turn of diners. Quite how an hour reduction in dining by one hour will have a positive impact on Covid transmission is mind boggling - I am not sure how we shall survive.
"Lockdowns and curfews do not work, responsible behaviour is the way to go, not the constant flip-flopping and scare-mongering we see from those that should know better. At the end of the day, our survival will come down to our amazing and loyal clients.
"We shall now be opening at 5pm every day for dinner Monday to Sunday with our award winning tasting menu. Diners can book in for 5pm-7 pm, 7pm-9pm, 6pm-8pm or 8pm-10pm. That way we hope to accommodate as many people as we can given the new guidelines and the distancing measures."
Measures in place to make the premises COVID-Secure include tables set on arrival and disinfected between guests, no tablecloths, the use of paper napkins and staff wearing masks.
The restaurant is also one of very few to use a state-of-the-art air cleaning and recirculation system. The NASA technology uses ultra- violet light to sanitise the air as well as the surfaces it lands on.
Last September, after six years in High Street, Tasca Dali was named Spanish Restaurant of the Year in the Birmingham Restaurant Awards.
The team prides itself on authentic and traditional Spanish cooking methods with most of the ingredients including cheeses, hams, chorizos, olive oils sourced from Spain, along with locally sourced meats and fish.
Alex said: "We have no menu as such at Tasca. Our food is prepared every day with whatever is market fresh on the day and in season. We cook in the traditional Spanish way, the same method that Spaniards have been preparing meals in their homes for generations, there are no short cuts. We do not compromise on the raw ingredients, using only the finest olive oils that we bring in ourselves from Jaen in Spain."
Tasca Dali recently introduced a new brunching menu Thursday to Sunday 11.30am – 4.30pm and takeaways are still available, with 24 hours' notice.
Alex added: "These are incredibly complex times but thanks to our hardworking team, our customers and even the flexibility of our reservation software, I do hope we can make it through."Tasca Dali is now taking bookings at on their website or on 07445 233 527.