BRISTOL â€“ Bagels and cream cheese are still a part of many peopleâ€™s daily diet. But Edward Sinkwich, owner of Bagels Plus Deli, is feeling the pinch amid the pandemic.
â€śWeâ€™re probably down about 75% in business. Itâ€™s really hard to tell how much weâ€™ve lost but itâ€™s just been a really crazy time,â€ť said Sinkwich, who has closed the storeâ€™s small sit-down area and relies completely on curbside pickups. There are two ways to order, customers can choose between calling the store at 860-583-8905 or give the front door a knock at 641 Farmington Ave. in Bristol.
The family owned and operated bagel shop has been baking fresh bagels daily since 1990. When the COVID-19 outbreak hit and the state-wide shutdown was happening, Sinkwich said he wanted to stay open mainly for his staff members.
â€śI have several staff members who rely on the paycheck I give. Thatâ€™s one of the main reasons why I stayed open, so they wouldnâ€™t suffer from a closure,â€ť he said. â€śEveryone is hustling. But I can only have so much staff. Our business is way off and Iâ€™m just mitigating the loss I have at the end of the month.â€ť
Despite the loss, the longtime business owner is happy to say he still sees a lot of regular customers continuing to drop by for their favorite bagels. He also continues to provide larger orders, such as business catering or baskets for those who want to do something nice for medical workers and first responders.
â€śItâ€™s been helpful that we do the catering and basket services and people have been taking advantage of it,â€ť he said. â€śWe also prepare our catering bagels in individual packets and containers so they donâ€™t get intermixed with anyone elseâ€™s food. Itâ€™s all prepared beforehand and weâ€™ve been very careful with our preparations.â€ť
In terms of reopening the business, Sinkwich said he has no plans to completely reopen the business just yet.
â€śThereâ€™s not enough social distancing in the store for customers so I donâ€™t feel comfortable in a complete reopen,â€ť he said. â€śI just want to be cautious for my employees and the customers, better safe than sorry.â€ť
For more information, visit: www.bagelsplusdeli.com