Tampa Bay restaurants are adopting a "better safe than sorry" strategy with the approach of Hurricane Irma. Peter Veytia, co-owner of Red Mesa, Red Mesa Cantina and Red Mesa Mercado, all in St. Petersburg, is closing as of tonight until further notice.
"We've been through this drill before, operating at half staff and with half the customers due to a pending storm. How long we close depends on the storm. We've told our staff we will give them 48 hours so they can come back from wherever they are," Veytia said by phone Wednesday afternoon. "We're boarding up all three restaurants. Better to be safe."
Other restaurants have taken to social media. Cask Social Kitchen in Tampa announced on Twitter that it will close tonight at 9 until further notice. Il Ritorno announced Wednesday that it will be closed from tonight through Sunday, and that "this is subject to change based on #HurricaneIrma's path....We know the news of the hurricane has everyone shaken up a bit, but just remember to help others as you also make moves to help yourself."
Meanwhile, hot spots like St. Petersburg cake shop Swah-rey will be open Thursday, Friday and maybe Saturday, "with plenty of cakes."
In times of stress, everyone needs cake.
Contact Laura Reiley at firstname.lastname@example.org or (727) 892-2293. Follow @lreiley.