Twin Cities restaurants make changes with vaccine card requirement in effect

Serving up drinks with a vaccination inquiry on the side, Centro and Vivir manager Jeremy Bue isn’t overthinking the new proof of vaccination or negative COVID-19 test question he now has to ask all his customers.

"This isn’t the worst of what we’ve had to deal with during COVID-19, we are just rolling with it," says Bue.

The main challenge at these northeast Minneapolis connecting restaurants became the three entrances. Assigning staff members to each door isn’t a realistic option.

"We’re not going to make it into a stop you at the door thing, we are going to talk to people like we normally do," says Bue. "We’re just going to work it into the routine. It’s no big deal."

Some other establishments in Minneapolis and St Paul are taking different approaches. Punch Pizza locations in both cities are shifting back to take-out only with the vaccination or negative test mandate going into effect Wednesday. We’re told the decision part staffing and partly because it’s familiar for employees at this point.

Rise Bagel also announced to customers online that its dining room is now closed with the new requirements. The manager says the decision is part labor and ease, part a commitment for all to be welcome.

The manager at the St. Paul Bagelry in Minneapolis says he moved the business back to 100 percent takeout for flexibility, and not having to turn any customers away. Also in Minneapolis Urban Forage Winery and Cider House has stacked up chairs in the taproom.

"It is not only vaccine mandate. It is the safety of staff and us and financial burdens comes with policing our customers!" says manager Gita Zeitler.

At  W.A. Frost management voluntarily started requiring proof vaccine or negative test four months ago and says business increased almost immediately.

"Train the people who do check cards in some very strategic conflict resolution practices, there have been just a handful," says general manager and executive chef Peter Drinan. "In my mind and in our mind, we’ve created a safe space for our team our guests, and given us the tools for the future."

Now everyone we talked to simply hopes they've done enough for customers to know what to expect.

"It’s really no different than showing your I.D. for a beverage, said Vivir customer Elise Erkens.