PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA)- There’s something new at East Lake Café in Palm Harbor and it’s not a new menu item, instead, it’s something on the door.
In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, a new award has been created by the Florida Restaurant and Logging Association: The Seal of Commitment.
According to the FRLA, the designation is a promise that a restaurant or hotel meets safety and sanitation standards and awarded establishments have invested resources to ensure that the location, staff, and guests remain safe and healthy.
The designation can now be found on the doors of area businesses that have meet certain safety standards including:
- All managers have a current food manager certificate;
- All employees have a current food handler certificate;
- All employees complete an FRLA COVID-19 Sanitation & Safety Course;
- Establishments meet specific sanitation standards.
East Lake Café is the only restaurant in Palm Harbor to receive the seal.
“With this class that all staff members took, we learned how to just take more precaution with coronavirus,” said East Lake Café waitress Ashley Simone. “So, every staff member is trained in extra food safety measures, sanitizing things, wearing your mask and how to properly maintain yourself and bring yourself to work.”
The café is also requiring all staff to wear a mask, all servers to wear gloves and all staff to have their temperatures checked before their shift. Customers are being asked to wear their masks while inside the restaurant.
“All of our customers can really feel safe coming out to eat again,” said Simone. “Customers ask us how what we’re doing. If we’re social distancing, if you can sit in all the booths, they asked us a lot of questions. With us having the certification. I think it does make them feel better.”
East Lake Café customer Mary Bannon tells WFLA.com she’s been coming to the establishment with her husband for nearly two decades. As a loyal customer, she appreciates what the café has done to protect their health.
Everybody is very professional, but very friendly and they make you feel at home,” said Bannon. “Through this virus They have been terrific. I mean, they have made sure that everyone is separated everyone wears a mask inside and then they have their food and the kitchen is very clean in the bathrooms and everything else. And I recommend this place wholeheartedly.”
To see a full list of Florida businesses that have received the Seal of Commitment, click here.