Rogers Park Social stays afloat while bars are closed by selling cocktail kits

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Some businesses are allowed to reopen, in full or partially, in the amended stay-at-home order that went into effect May 1. But others cannot, and so are finding creative ways to stay afloat and in touch with their customers in the meantime.

In Rogers Park, happy hour now comes as a kit through a little window.

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A few weeks ago, when ABC7 Eyewitness News last visited Rogers Park Social, they had gotten a state grant but their future was very uncertain. Now they are open, with cocktail carryout through their front window.

"The term I like to lean on is 'take and make,'" said general manager Wally Andersen. "Right now, we are doing a blackberry Old Fashioned. I'm preparing all of the syrup and the bitters and the garnish to go home with you, and this bottle of booze you get, and all you have to do is pour it over ice and add all the garnishes."

"We are in a weird spot right now, but we are doing what we can do to be innovative," Andersen added.

It was a particularly happy day at Rogers Park Social Friday, as staff found out they were approved for a federal Payroll Protection Loan.

"Everyone is so close, we talk all the time inside and outside of work, so it's really exciting," Andersen said.

While their long-term plan is still uncertain, they have seen great interest in their kits. They have sold out most days, and look forward to someday in reopening in a way that keeps staff and customers safe.
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