COVID-19: Louisiana lifts alcohol limitations on bars and restaurants, masks still required

Coronavirus

NEW ORLEANS — A day before the current COVID-19 state order was set to end, Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards issued a new proclamation easing coronavirus restrictions set for the same date, Wednesday, March 31.

Perhaps the highlight of the new order now set until April 28 are the relaxed restrictions regarding the alcohol service at statewide bars and restaurants.

Gov. Edwards has removed limitations on when bars and restaurants may serve alcohol, defaulting to local ordinances. People younger than 21 are still not allowed inside bars and bars are only allowed to provide patrons with socially distanced seated service, under the new order.

Social distancing of six feet will still be required in businesses and Louisiana’s statewide mask mandate remains in place.

How this will affect bars and restaurants in Orleans Parish remains to be seen, as New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell has yet to lift an 11 p.m. curfew for its establishments.

Bars

All patrons shall be seated at tables. Walk-up service at the bar may
resume, however patrons shall return to their table for consumption.

All seating of patrons shall be socially distanced.

No patron shall be allowed on premises unless of the legal age to
consume alcoholic beverages.

Any business operating pursuant to this Paragraph is encouraged to follow the applicable guidance from the State Fire Marshal publish at opensafely.la.gov and the Louisiana.

Restaurants, Cafes, and Coffee Shops

All restaurants, cafes, and coffee shops shall be allowed to provide
dine-in service under the following conditions:

  • Waiting areas shall be closed. Members of the public should be
    required to make reservations or to wait outside, while
    maintaining social distancing, or in vehicles.
  • All buffets or other common food stations shall remain closed
    for self-service. However, restaurants that operate buffet-style
    may provide dine-in service if a restaurant employee is stationed
    at the buffet to serve dine-in customers.

Any business operating pursuant to this Paragraph is encouraged to follow the applicable guidance from the State Fire Marshal publish at opensafely.la.gov and the Louisiana.

Casinos, Racetracks, and Video Poker Establishments

Lobbies or other areas where members of the public may congregate (except for bathrooms) shall be closed to the public. Members of the public should be required to wait outside, while maintaining social distancing, or in vehicles.

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