Several bars shut down, scale back in Over-the-Rhine

Updated: Jun. 25, 2020 at 6:03 PM EDT
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CINCINNATI (FOX19) - Three bars in Over The Rhine have made the decision to shut down or scale back in the wake of recent coronavirus numbers from the Ohio Health Department.

Keith McEly is the general manager of the Samuel Adams Cincinnati Tap Room.

“Yesterday that press conference was definitely confirmation that the R rate has increased,” McEly said, referring to the reproduction rate, or how many other people one person with COVID-19 infects on average.

Cincinnati’s reproduction rate currently stands at 1.49, a figure that indicates the virus is actively spreading and, according to health experts, places the region at risk of a critical outbreak.

Until Wednesday, McEly says the tap room had been serving the majority of their customers out on the patio. McEly says customers have been saying they feel safe with that.

“With the numbers spiking it’s going to be hard to maintain that same feel,”he said.

They’re not alone.

Queen City Radio down the street announced on their Facebook page they are moving to take-out only as a preemptive safety measure. They’ve even postponed events for the near future.

More | Second OTR restaurant group announces COVID-19 cases — but it isn’t closing | Rhinegeist Brewery closes OTR taproom after 2 employees test positive for COVID-19

Neither Queen City Radio nor the Samuel Adams Tap Room had an employee test positive, something that can’t be said of Revel OTR Urban Winery.

On Facebook Thursday the winery said they’re closing for the time being because an employee tested positive. They added the employee was not showing symptoms the last time they worked over a week ago.

All three bars shared an underlying theme behind the decision to close down or scale back.

“The safety of our drinkers, our co-workers, that is first and foremost the most important thing in our mind,” said McEly.

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