Puritan backroom temporarily closed after bartender’s positive COVID test

A popular New Hampshire restaurant, known for politics and chicken tenders, is temporarily closing this week after an employee tested positive for COVID-19.

In a Facebook post called Puritan Backroom in Manchester, New Hampshire, it was announced on Tuesday that it would remain closed on Tuesday and Wednesday, as they work with local health officials to follow appropriate response protocols. According to the Post, the employee who tested positive was a bartender who last worked on Saturday.

“While this employee is asymptomatic, we think it’s best to take precautions and take a brief operational break,” the restaurant said. “The health and safety of our guests and staff is of the utmost importance, and we will take many steps over the next few days to ensure a sense of trust.”

Puritan officials said the bartender was “in close contact with someone else who was asymptomatic but tested positive for the virus,” which he learned during work on Saturday.

“The employee detected that positive test at noon on Saturday, and the employee was asked to leave Puritan immediately, test the virus, and cancel the pending test results,” the employee said in the Post on Tuesday .

The restaurant stated that they have identified all other Puritan employees who may be in close contact with the bartender and must provide a negative COVID-19 test before returning to work. Puritan hired a professional sweeper to disinfect the entire Puritan facility.

The news comes after several other well-known Manchester eateries closed down temporarily after positive staff COVID-19 tests.

The Puritan Backroom wrote on Tuesday, “We understand that these are unprecedented times, and we appreciate your support and patience.

The 103-year-old family-run restaurant, which co-owns the New Hampshire Rep. Chris Pappa made headlines in February for winning the “Classics Award” from the James Beard Foundation. It also made headlines in December, after 18 people who attended a private ceremony at the establishment suffered gastrointestinal disease.

Joe Biden, a former vice president and Democratic presidential candidate, became the latest high-profile politician to pay a visit to the Puritan backroom in February when he stayed there for ice cream.

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