Joe Beef urges restaurants to sell takeout wine in protest of government restrictions

Dec 10 2020, 10:15 am

The owner of Joe Beef, Liverpool House, and Vin Papillon, is asking fellow Quebec restaurateurs to engage in a virtual protest against the government’s COVID-19 restrictions.

David McMillan is encouraging restaurant owners across the province to sell a bottle of wine without food, which is illegal in Quebec restaurants, and then post the picture to social media using the hashtag #openourcellars (or #ouvreznoscaves in French).

McMillan calls the act a protest of “civil disobedience” towards the government’s handling of an industry that has been decimated by the pandemic, specifically Premier François Legault’s management of the months-long closure of the industry.

“Today I encourage all my colleagues who own restaurants in the province of Québec to sell a bottle of wine without food to a customer as an act of civil disobedience to show our displeasure with the inaction of the Legault CAQ Government’s reforms to our restaurants permit in these extraordinary circumstances,” reads Joe Beef’s Instagram post. “Take a picture and post it to your social network #openourcellars.”

 

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A post shared by David Hayfield McMillan (@joebeefmtl)

The virtual protest comes a day after the province’s director of public health, Dr. Horacio Arruda, told the National Assembly that his department did not recommend the Quebec government to shut down restaurants in an effort to limit the transmission of the virus.

“The restaurants you love are dying and our provincial government doesn’t care,” said Elena, a contemporary Italian restaurant in Montreal in response to McMillan’s post. “Please consider supporting restaurants this holiday season by buying wine directly through your favourite restaurants and not the SAQ.”

Several Montreal restaurants have also responded to McMillan’s encouraged protest and shared pictures selling wine, without food, on social media.

 

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A post shared by Elena (@elenamontreal)

 

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A post shared by Foxy (@foxymtl)

 

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A post shared by Loïc (@bar_loic)

 

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A post shared by Satay Brothers (@sataybrothers)

 

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A post shared by @caffeunpodipiu (@caffeunpodipiu)

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