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After Covid Backlash, U.S. Neighborhoods Rally Behind Chinese Restaurants

Campaigns like #takeouthate are pushing the message.

A selection of dishes from Mama Chang in Fairfax, Va.

A selection of dishes from Mama Chang in Fairfax, Va.

Source: Mama Chang

On June 29 the dim sum bastion Jing Fong reopened in Manhattan’s Chinatown for take out and delivery. A handful of folding tables have been set up outside for people who want to eat pork dumplings hot from the steamer. But because the restaurant shares Elizabeth Street with the 5th Police Precinct, the road can’t be blocked with waiter service tables.

It’s a stark contrast to the activity that took place a few months ago in the 800-seat multilevel space, with 20 dim sum carts roaming the floor on a typical Sunday. “On a busy day, we would seat 2,500 to 3,000. Just for brunch,” says marketing manager Claudia Leo. The restaurant prepped over 1,000 pork buns a day. “I doubt we’ll be doing that anytime soon,” she says.