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Tallahassee restaurants hoping to leave 2021's hurdles in the past

Posted at 6:57 PM, Dec 31, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-31 19:13:11-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Railroad Square Crafthouse is hoping that their 2021 struggles like labor shortages and the fatigue of the service industry is a thing of the past.

Owner Justine Spells said that she cut their operating hours for a week, and was even one of the only employees on staff, giving her workers a little more of a break.

"I decided to let my staff go home, as many as I possibly could for the holiday break so that they could enjoy it, most of them are college students," said Spells.

Spells said 2021 has been a difficult year for those working in the service industry.

"It's been a very trying year that's for sure," said Spells. "This past couple of weeks I've had some amazing guests come through and I couldn't be more thankful, but it's been a very rough year."

The Crafthouse said they are currently trying to fill around 2 positions in the back of the restaurant, currently, if an employee calls out, it could put a toll on the staff that has already worked long hours this year.

"If one person calls out and is sick and cannot come in, then I don't have anyone to fill it in, then it's me filling in and then I'm working 18 hour days," said Spells.

Some, like Sage Restaurant, who said they were unavailable for comment Friday, have been impacted by COVID-19.

In a Facebook Post, Sage said:

"Due to a COVID-19 outbreak in our restaurant-- Sage will be closed for dinner through Jan. 4."

Continuing:

"We are sorry for the inconvenience but appreciate your understanding through these difficult times."

However, at Chucks Fish, its been business as usual.

"It's been a constant uprise," said general manager Natasha Bills. "We've been doing really really good."

Chuck's Fish not really being affected by the labor shortage, or even COVID-19 issues, ready to ring in the new year on a positive note.

"We're just looking forward to more and more people discovering us," said Bills.