DEEP DIVE: Hudson Valley restaurants can’t catch break

Diners may have a hard time eating at some of their favorite Hudson Valley restaurants soon.
Melissa Fleischut, president and CEO of the New York State Restaurant Association, says business was cooking during November and December - but then Omicron surged through the Hudson Valley and dried up an already tight labor market. "We were facing labor shortages and staffing issues even before this latest surge," says Fleischut.
Fleischut says now many of your favorite dining spots are cutting back hours. "Some that may have been open six or seven days a week may be going back to three, four days a week. Maybe they're shutting down for lunch again. Others are actually considering shutting down for a week or two because January tends to be a slower month for the industry."
She says it's been tricky finding out how many Hudson Valley restaurants have closed because of this latest surge. "I haven't heard a lot of that yet. It's probably still a little early."
Fleischut suggests supporting your favorite restaurants by getting takeout if you're not comfortable eating in. She says it's made a world of difference for eateries trying to survive the pandemic.