San Diego Restaurants Must Close By 10pm Daily Starting July 1st

June 30, 2020

San Diego County officials announced today that in addition to the requirement that all bars, breweries and wineries not serving food must close starting tomorrow, all restaurants open for dine in must close for public consumption by 10pm daily.

It was announced yesterday that due to rising COVID-19 numbers, starting on Wednesday, July 1, all bars, wineries and breweries will be forced to close if they do not serve food. It was clarified this afternoon that this does not include establishments that have partnered with a food provider like a caterer or food truck, so long as food and alcohol are paid for in the same transaction. The closure mandate also does not include outdoor seating at wineries. Furthermore, it was ordered that beer, wine and alcohol can only be consumed at an establishment while eating a meal, and there is to be no standing consumption allowed at bars and restaurants that serve food. These health orders will be revisited at the end of July. Any additional reopenings are paused through at least August 1.

San Diego County also announced today that all restaurants must close for dine-in with the last seating being at 10pm. Patrons already inside eateries by 10pm may stay inside until 11pm, and take out will still be allowed after 10pm. In addition, California Governor Gavin Newsom announced today that there will be an announcement tomorrow about dialing back certain precautionary measures, including possibly re-closing beaches and boardwalks before the holiday weekend. The county has stated that it reached out to independent San Diego cities to assess preparedness before making a decision about beach closures.

"In light of the high numbers of positive cases in recent days and reports today of 10 current community outbreaks throughout the County, a decision was made to close these establishments at 10pm," said Wilma Wooten, M.D., M.P.H., County public health officer. "As the night wears on, restaurants have a tendency to become bars and people are more likely to let their guard down when it comes to social distancing."

San Diego County's public health officer Dr. Wilma Wooten today reported 317 new COVID-19 cases and four additional deaths, bringing the totals to 14,149 positives and 365 deaths since record keeping began in March. The new cases accounted for 4% of 7,382 tests.
For more information on new restrictions for bars and restaurants, see the San Diego County Public Health Order sections 13 & 14, copied below:

13. All bars, wineries, distilleries and breweries shall close unless they comply with section 14c, below. All other restaurants, bars, wineries, distilleries and breweries shall be closed from 10:00 p.m. until 5:00 a.m. every day. Guests already in the facility at 10:00 p.m. may remain in the facility until 11:00 p.m. Only staff needed to close, open or clean shall be in the facility between the hours of 11:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m.

14. All restaurants, bars, wineries and breweries shall also be required to ensure their customers comply with all of the following measures and shall immediately close if they are not able to do so:

a. No food or beverages shall be served to or consumed by a customer who is not seated at a table designated by the restaurant for dining.

b. The bar area of a restaurant may be used only for table service of meals.

c. Alcoholic drinks shall only be served as part of a meal and must be sold and served in the same transaction as the meal. All meals shall be served by a food operator permitted by the San Diego County Department of Environmental Health. This restriction shall not be applicable to outdoor service of wine at a winery.

d. Customers shall not stand in the restaurant, bar, winery or brewery except in the reception area while waiting for a table or to pick up take-out food. If customers cannot be socially distanced in the reception area they shall wait in their cars or outside of the restaurant in a line with six feet between each customer.

e. Discontinue open seating. All members of the party must be present before seating and the host must bring the entire party to the table at one time. The customers allowed at a table are limited to members of a single household or customers who have asked to be seated together at the time a table is requested.

f. Discontinue seating customers and/or groups at bar counters, sushi preparation bars, etc. where they cannot maintain at least six feet of distance from employee work areas/stations. Install physical barriers or partitions in areas where maintaining a physical distance of six feet is difficult.

g. Customers are not required to wear face coverings while at a table with members of the same household. Customers at a table with non-household members are not required to wear face coverings when eating and drinking. Customers are required to wear face coverings at all other times in conformance with paragraph 9, above.

h. Tables designated for dining shall be six feet apart, or separated by barriers or partitions that extend above the heads of customers while seated. Customer shall not be allowed to bring additional chairs to the table that interfere with the six foot separation.

i. Self-serve food or drink options, such as buffets, salad bars, and drink stations are not allowed.

j. Shared entertainment items such as board games, arcade games and vending machines are prohibited and customers shall not have access to game and entertainment areas such as pool tables or darts.

k. Dance floors shall be closed and live performances such as musical or dance acts shall be discontinued.

l. Any customer that refuses to comply with this section shall be subject to enforcement per Health and Safety Code section 120295.