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Restaurants are in trouble.

They need our help.

Here’s what you can do.

EAT OUT, SAVE 30 PERCENT OFF YOUR TAB

This program was created by Pierce County to help restaurants through these difficult times. The program is funded with $7.5 million in CARES Act funding. Diners, all you have to do is dine out at a participating Pierce County restaurant from November 8-12 and November 15-19, 2020. That’s it. Spend your cash at a participating full-service restaurant and you’ll get 30 percent off your tab. The discount is for food only. Dine-in and take-out food both are discounted (third-party delivery excluded). Alcohol is excluded from this program. More information on the program here. And here is the official Restaurant Rally program website.

HOW PIERCE COUNTY RESTAURANT RALLY WORKS

Participating restaurants will be refunded a percentage of food sales by Pierce County, which has allocated $7.5 million from its CARES Act funding to pay for the program. Every restaurant that participates will receive reimbursement direct from Pierce County.

WILL NEW RESTAURANT RESTRICTIONS IMPACT RESTAURANT RALLY?

New dining restrictions were announced Nov. 15. Dining rooms will close for in-person dining service Nov. 18-Dec. 14 as part of the state’s efforts to manage the pandemic. Pierce County officials confirmed Sunday that Pierce County Restaurant Rally will continue, as planned, Nov. 15-19.

Diners can collect the 30 percent discount on dine-in and take-out service until Tuesday, Nov. 17. On Wednesday, Nov. 18 and Thursday, Nov. 19, participating restaurants will give discounts on take-out food. For the latest updates, check Pierce County’s official website for Pierce County Restaurant Rally at piercecountyrestaurantrally.com.

TIPS FOR NAVIGATING RESTAURANT RALLY

  1. Third-party ordering and delivery services, such as Uber Eats, Grub Hub and Door Dash, are excluded from the program because the program is intended to directly support local restaurants, not give money to technology companies. (Read more about why that is here).
  2. Tipping etiquette suggests diners should tip on the full amount of the bill, not the discounted amount. Treat servers well, they’re stressed enough as it is.
  3. State regulations require dining room capacity remain at 50 percent, and only dining parties of 6 and fewer will be seated
  4. Make a reservation if the restaurant accepts them. Cancel the reservation if you can’t keep your reservation. Empty tables is a loss of revenue.
  5. Booze is excluded from the promotion.
  6. Diners can get the 30 percent discount on dine-in service and take-out meals at participating restaurants. Confirm with the restaurant that they’re participating before you order.

Restaurant owners have advice for how you can navigate Restaurant Rally here in this story.

FEATURED RESTAURANTS DURING RESTAURANT RALLY

I’ll be featuring different locally owned restaurants during Restaurant Rally. Check back here often for my stories about participating restaurants, as I will be posting new stories every day of the rally.

Exquisite Thai grilled pork at Chili Thai & the area’s best schnitzel at Citron European Bistro


Perfect carnitas tacos at Fiesta Taqueria and Beef on Weck – the sandwich from NY at Cooper’s Food & Drink


Obama noodles at Saigon House and pizza built from wild Tacoma yeast at E9 Brewing Co.


Tableside mu shu pork at Yen Ching and housemade fresh pasta at Bar Bistro


Poke bowls at Happy Teriyaki and the most decadent brunch burger at The Mill Steakhouse & Spirits


Ramen to go at Zen Ramen & Sushi Burrito and take-out baklava from Sluggo Brewing


Take-out queso at Puerto Vallarta and the best barbecue for meat sweats at The Opal Lounge


Juicy burgers at Farm 12 and Tacoma’s best kabuli chana at Gateway to India


Excellent sushi at Sushi Ari and big, beefy gyros from It’s Greek To Me


THE RESTAURANT RALLY LIST

Find the full list of participating restaurants at the county’s website for the event, piercecountyrestaurantrally.com.


WHO AM I AND WHY AM I SUPPORTING THIS CAUSE?

I’m a longtime food journalist and creator of this dining news website (dinepiercecounty.com). My mission is to connect diners with restaurants and to explore the vast dining landscape of Pierce County. I work a day job in communications as a professional storyteller. This website is my side hustle and passion project to make sure that diners know about all the great dining choices in Pierce County. Subscribe to get an email every time I post a story here and you’ll never miss out on dining news in Pierce County again! – Sue Kidd, Dine Pierce County publisher

ARE YOU A MEMBER OF THE DINE PIERCE COUNTY FACEBOOK GROUP? SHOW YOUR SUPPORT AND MARK YOURSELF AS ATTENDING!


Not every restaurant will qualify to participate in the Pierce County Restaurant Rally program. If a restaurant does not meet the criteria for this program, local restaurants might be able to qualify for other aid programs for businesses. I’ve compiled an aid list for restaurants:


RESTAURANT OWNERS: HOW TO APPLY TO RESTAURANT RALLY

PLEASE NOTE: THE DEADLINE FOR APPLYING FOR THIS PROGRAM HAS PASSED

APPLY HERE: https://www.cognitoforms.com/PierceCounty2/PierceCountyRestaurantRallyProgramApplication

BACKGROUND INFO HERE: https://www.piercecountywa.gov/7032/Restaurant-Rally

FINE PRINT:

  • UPDATE: The deadline for restaurants has been extended to October 29. And the Pierce County Council approved an amendment to the program on October 27 that extends reimbursement to take-out meals.
  • Participating restaurants must be full-service restaurants as defined by NAICS Code of 722511.
  • Restaurants must be “primarily engaged in providing food services to patrons who order and are served while seated and pay after eating.”
  • Only Pierce County restaurants can participate. And the restaurant must have operated before March 23, 2020, and be currently open to the public.
  • Restaurants must agree to follow applicable health directives.
  • Restaurants must agree to provide a 30 percent discount on “dine-in meal purchases, excluding alcohol.” (((UPDATE: The program has been expanded to cover take-out food, as well)))
  • Restaurants participating in the promotion can receive “up to 50 percent of gross sales for dine-in meals, excluding alcohol, for each day.”
  • Restaurants must provide “weekly documentation of gross sales of dine-in meals where discounts were applied, excluding alcohol, and the value of discounts given during the promotional period.”
  • Participating restaurants must agree to promote the Pierce County Restaurant Rally program.
  • There’s a cap for restaurants. The total funding available for each participating restaurant cannot exceed $90,000.
  • And, finally, according to the county, “No participating restaurants will receive less than $5,000.”