Dear Friends and Community,
With the constant changes we are experiencing during this season, we thought it would be helpful to put together a list of questions you might have about our current operations at Blackberry Market.
1. When can I come and eat AT BLACKBERRY? Are you opening up for outdoor seating?
YES! We are excited to welcome back customers to a dine-in-ish experience. In Glen Ellyn, we will be seating customers on our back patio and out front (sidewalk area). In LaGrange, we will be seating out on our sidewalk and the seating/tables just inside our retractable doors, both starting this Friday, May 29th!
2. How many tables do you have? What are you going to do to keep them from being too crowded?
We have 9 tables on the back patio and roughly 12 out front in Glen Ellyn and 9 tables in LaGrange. Per recent mandates, they will all be six feet apart, and only employees will be permitted to move them.
In order to accommodate a demand for tables, we are implementing a new system where customers will be assigned to a table and escorted by a host.
3. What if all the tables are full?
We will have a designated place outside to wait for a table if you want to wait in line. Customers will need to remain 6 feet apart within the line.
Alternatively, if the tables are full and you do not want to wait, you can take your food to go or in Glen Ellyn, you can picnic on the lawn at Glen Ellyn Bible or St. Mark’s or on the grassy area between the sidewalk and the street.
4. Can I reserve a table?
At this time we are not accepting reservations.
5. Can I bring all my friends with me to eat at Blackberry?
Yes!-ish… The majority of our accommodating tables will be 2 and 4 tops and we are only permitted to have a max of 6 people at each table. Therefore, groups of more than 6 will have to split up and eat at separate tables.
6. I really miss getting work done at Blackberry, while enjoying a coffee and cinnamon roll. Can I bring my laptop and work at an outside table?
We miss you too! We dream about the day when we can be open again for folks to just hang out, work in our space and drink bottomless cups of coffee. But for now, with only being able to serve our community with 10-20% of our tables, we need them all to be dedicated to diners. So, no, we are not allowing laptops at this time. We will still have Wi-Fi for now, but will monitor a need to turn it off if it becomes an issue.
7. What if I am at a table and I decide I want more coffee or a frosted sugar cookie?
From your table, you can order online on our website and indicate your table number. Then we will bring your order out to your table. This will enable you to avoid getting back in line and will help us limit the flow of traffic inside the cafe.
Online Ordering, Pick Up, Delivery, & Catering
8. Are you still going to offer delivery service?
In order to manage the new development of welcoming diners, we are pausing our delivery service at this time. However, we will continue to offer delivery for catering (see #12) and for orders over $120. If you want to place an online order for over $120 and you would like it delivered, we would ask for flexibility and a 2-3 hour delivery window. For larger orders, we ask that you contact our catering coordinator here.
9. Can I still order online for in-store pick up or curbside delivery?
YES, please! Between being limited in our table numbers and having to add staff to manage those tables, we will need to continue operating a hefty takeout service to stay afloat. So we appreciate those online orders…keep ‘em coming!
10. Can I still walk in and order takeout?
YES! We will still be accommodating walk-in orders to-go.
11. How can I best support Blackberry during this time? I keep telling everyone to order yummy food, but is there anything else I can do?
Why… yes! Thanks for asking (wink, wink)! We have been delighted by the response of our community during this time. We have asked for help sponsoring meals for the homeless, and you have answered abundantly. We’ve had people order meals for their local first responders and for hospital staff. We’ve had folks purchase gift cards. And those are all great ways to help! THANK YOU!
If you’re going back to work in an office anytime soon, we would love to talk to you about catering individual lunches for your team. (See #12)
Or if you’re getting together with a group of friends or family (no more than 10, of course), and you want Blackberry to provide the meal (or the treats), well, we’d be tickled pink (or purple) to deliver up some yum! Just call the store and ask for a manager or email: catering @ blackberry.cafe with your request!
12. Are you offering catering right now?
YES! We have our usual catering menu available. Since we can’t fill up our restaurants right now, we are excited for any opportunity to provide tasty food for a group of folks. We’ll even deliver individual boxed lunches or meals to you. Just email our catering manager: catering @ blackberry.cafe. We love to have a few day’s notice on catering orders, but if you are a day out and want to order catering, go ahead and call us. Just ask for a manager and we will see what we can do!
13. Can I get a house account for my office?
Yes, we do that for folks who regularly order catering from us. Email bob @ blackberry. cafe and we’ll get that set up for you.
14. Are face masks mandatory?
Yes. All of our staff are wearing face masks. And masks are required for all customers when you walk into Blackberry. If you are dining with us, you can remove your mask once you are seated at your table.
15. What are you doing to keep dishes and tables clean?
We are continuing to package a lot of our food to go, so even if you are dining in, you could be using takeaway packaging. We are asking that you leave all your trash and dishes on your table when you are finished. Our team will clear it away and sanitize the table with a specific sanitizer that kills the virus.
16. Can I have a bowl of hot soup or oatmeal? When will you serve dinner again?
At the moment, we are only packaging soup for the Grab & Go in quart-size containers for you to take home. And at the time, we are not serving oatmeal until we transition back to the fall.
Also, our amazing kitchen team has increased production of healthy meals that you can take home and heat in the oven for dinner. Try one of our Meals To Go. We’re a little biased, but we think they are amazing and the team is coming up with new ones every week.
17. Can I buy an alcoholic beverage?
Yes! We have bottles of wine and beer that are available for purchase, both for take home and dine-in. And per a new Illinois law, we are working on a specialty brunch cocktail as well! Note that at Blackberry, (per village laws) in order to enjoy an alcoholic beverage outside at a table, you must also order food as well.
18. When are you going back to your regular operating hours?
As of June 1, 2020, we will be open from 7am-5pm seven days a week at both locations! We will be evaluating later hours as we continue to transition.
19. What gives with all these new rules and regulations? Why are there so many?
The majority of our systems are being updated to follow the mandates and protocols that have been put in place by the Governor’s office.
20. I heard a rumor that you were unveiling a Gluten Free bread option? Is this really true? I mean, we’ve been asking for years!
Why yes, it is true! We have yet to make a big social announcement as we have been slowly rolling out and training our team. To answer a few likely follow-up questions: yes, it is a brioche bun… yes, it was developed internally and is made in-house… yes, you can order it now.
21. What’s up with the hibiscus tea?
It’s true. Our staple Tropical Hibiscus (via Rishi Tea) was discontinued a few years ago and we have been living off the remaining stock (which we bought out completely). BUT… we did develop a new (proprietary) BLACKBERRY HIBISCUS with Rishi that we are now serving up! You need to try!
21. I’ve heard rumors of something called “Pinkety-Drinkety”… what is this?
Well, this is an internally referenced variation on our lemonade. It’s 90% lemonade with a shot or two of our newly released Blackberry Hibiscus! The perfect summer thirst-quencher!
Ok, if you’ve made it all the way to here, you’re committed. So we just want to say again, thank you so much for your support during this time. We are honored to be putting food on the table for you, wherever that table may be at the moment.
If you have a question that isn’t answered here, feel free to get in touch with us here.