Pine Club offers outdoor seating for the first time in its 73 years

Credit: Dayton.com

Caption
For the first time in its 73-year existence, The Pine Club is offering outdoor seating on a temporary patio set up outside its front entrance.

Credit: Dayton.com

For the first time since its founding in 1947, The Pine Club is offering al fresco dining.

The venerable Dayton steakhouse took the necessary steps to add a patio outside its front entrance at 1926 Brown St. to help it grapple with the restrictions imposed on its seating capacity by the coronavirus pandemic, according to Pine Club General Manager Karen Watson.

The restaurant just reopened for dine-in service a couple of weeks ago on July 29, and its efforts to get back on its feet fully took another hit just two days later when state officials issued a 10 p.m. curfew on alcohol sales at restaurants and bars.

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“Our goal is to offer some limited outdoor seating, and an outdoor waiting area for overflow when we reach maximum capacity at the bar,” Watson said late Thursday as the restaurant prepared to open. “It’s certainly a new process for us, but we had a successful Tuesday and Wednesday. Since we had to limit distancing indoors, this allows us to operate close to 100% capacity for seating, and still offer space at the bar for a cocktail before dinner.”

For the first time in its 73-year existence, The Pine Club is offering outdoor seating on a temporary patio set up outside its front entrance. MARK FISHER/STAFF
Caption
For the first time in its 73-year existence, The Pine Club is offering outdoor seating on a temporary patio set up outside its front entrance. MARK FISHER/STAFF

Credit: MARK FISHER/STAFF

Credit: MARK FISHER/STAFF

This is usually a busy time for The Pine Club, located adjacent to the University of Dayton. Parents and families head to UD in August to drop off students for the fall semester. UD is spreading out the student move-in process a bit this year, which is helping The Pine Club maintain social distancing inside, and now outside, the restaurant.

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“We are aware that safety first is the priority,” Watson said. “Our goal is to provide the distance required for safety but not take away from The Pine Club experience.”

So far, the customer reaction to reopening, even with limited seating and bar space inside, has been strong and supportive, Watson said.

“All in all, our customers are happy, so I’m happy,” she said.

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