Del Mar restaurant takes coronavirus precautions

Ponte Vecchio in Del Mar is taking extra steps for public health and safety.

Trattoria Ponte Vecchio restaurant in Del Mar has taken several extra precautions due to the coronavirus. Executive Chef Rob Zakir sent a message out to all of his patrons stating that in addition to very strict, existing health department requirements, they have voluntarily enhanced cleaning procedures and serving process in the interest of customers’ and employees’ health and safety.

“There is no higher priority for the entire Ponte Vecchio family than the safety of our customers and employees,” Zakir said.

As news of the coronavirus first came out and people began to be concerned, he said he saw business drop about 30 percent. Like many local businesses, he decided to send out a message about the additional steps they are taking and he said the message has been well received and some customers are returning to dine out.

To help keep the community safe, Zakir hopes to encourage other restaurants to consider using similar methods.

Ponte Vecchio has implemented the following procedures to minimize the risks of the contamination:

  • Delivery service or meal prep: For those feeling anxious about dining out, delivery service is offered within five miles from Ponte Vecchio.
  • Disposable menus: Ponte Vecchio will be using a one-time use, disposable menu.
  • Glassware and silverware disinfection: In addition to current disinfection procedures, they will run a second disinfection cycle with all plates, silverware, cups and stemware.
  • Use of gloves: All employees in the kitchen will wear gloves handling deliveries, cleaning and using the lavatory. The gloves for the lavatory will be disposed in the bathrooms and they are still required to wash hands and arms for 30 seconds. All front of the house employees will be wearing gloves during service.
  • Use of thermometers: All employees will be checked at the beginning of each shift for their temperature. Upon any visible symptoms, employee will be asked to go home or to visit a physician.
  • Plate covers: All dishes will be covered with a dome during table service.
  • Tables: All silverware will be tucked inside folded napkins to minimize exposure to open air. All plates and glasses will be turned upside down to minimize exposure. As always, they will use new tablecloths after each service.
  • Chairs and knobs: All doorknobs and chairs will be wiped down with alcohol-based sanitizers after each seating.
  • Payments: Ponte Vechhio is requesting all payments to be made with a credit card only to minimize the use of cash to minimize the risks.

Most importantly, Zakir encourages customers to use the delivery service and reconsider dining out if they are experiencing symptoms or if they or anyone they know have been in contact with someone who has recently traveled overseas or to any of the heavy infected regions.

To contact Ponte Vecchio, call (858) 259-9063 or email