Councilwoman Farah Louis announced she and at least 75 other people would celebrate the reopening of Suede Restaurant in East Flatbush Thursday far surpassing the state’s mandate prohibiting gatherings of more than 25 people.
“NYC Council Member Farah Louis, Small Business Services Commissioner Jonnel Doris, will join Suede Restaurant owners in East Flatbush to reopen its outdoor garden dining space after serving as a main hub for distributing food to essential workers. This celebration will coincide with their Third Annual Teachers’ Appreciation BBQ. Suede Restaurant, renowned for its charitable work, has been a staple business in the community” the press release informed.It also indicated that in addition to Louis, Doris, and owners of the restaurant, Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke, NYS Senator Kevin Parker, “over 75 DOE Teachers” and members of Brooklyn Community Board 17 would be in attendance.
The restaurant certainly does deserve to be celebrated – not only for its modern Caribbean fare, but also for feeding hundreds of essential workers at nearby hospitals during the height of the pandemic.
However, the press release comes after Gov. Andrew Cuomo restricted gatherings to 25 people during Phase 3 of the city’s reopening to limit the spread of coronavirus which has taken the lives of 7,189 Brooklynites since March. Other regions of the state that have entered Phase 4 are allowed gatherings of up to 50 people.
The restaurant, Suede, plans to have the gathering in its courtyard, which, per the restaurant’s posts on Instagram, currently has very limited seating.
“It’s a 2-hour event, not everyone will be in at the same time,” Kristia Winter, Communications Director for Councilmember Louis told us. “They’ll flow in at different times and not everyone has RSVPed. We are definitely aware of the different measures in place to ensure safety. We’re working with the community board to make sure we’re not jeopardizing anyone’s safety.”
The staffer who answered the phone at the restaurant could not tell us what the current capacity of the back yard was.