Restaurants find ways to deal with water woes during boil advisory

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — MLGW has lifted the water conservation order, but the precautionary boil water advisory is still in place, and the water woes have added insult to injury for many small businesses, especially restaurants.

MLGW lifts conservation order; boil water advisory still on for now

Many places had to close for an extended period of time because of the weather conditions, and now the water issues are forcing them to get creative.

Patrick and Deni Reilly own The Majestic Grille downtown and Cocozza American Italian on Mud Island. They were not only excited to have customers inside the Majestic Grille around lunchtime on Monday, but they were also excited about what’s going on outside.

“Never been so happy to see the rain come,” said Patrick.

The cold temperatures over the past week have been brutal for business. Snow and poor road conditions forced them to change operation hours at their restaurants some days, then the water problems hit.

“We had practice two years ago, so we kinda learned the ropes. We talked to our fellow restaurant owners, and we all sort of reminded ourselves what we did last time and how we got through it,” said Deni Reilly.

The Reillys said water pressure at their restaurants has been fine but they’re making other changes to comply with MLGW’s precautionary boil water advisory, including boiling the water before using it and buying ice, canned sodas, and bottled water.

In East Memphis, there’s also been a struggle.

Over the weekend, Ronnie Gristanti’s Italian Restaurant showed us the extremely low water pressure they were dealing with.

Some restaurants forced to close due to water issue

“So, our employees have been out of work for six solid days,” said Executive Manager Randi Belisomo.

But Monday, there was good news. Belisomo told us the pressure is now back. They have been boiling water all day and offering a limited menu for to-go and delivery.

They hope to have their full menu available on Tuesday.

“We are appealing to everybody that’s been cooped up inside to eat out for the next five days, preferably in a restaurant that’s locally owned and operated,” Patrick Reilly said.

“And all the other small businesses out there have been impacted too, so support local and all the small businesses. All the money stays here in town,” Deni Reilly said.

There is no definite word on when that precautionary boil water advisory will be lifted.

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