First customers at Chili's following coronavirus closures are 'younger,' drinking more than family clientele, CEO says

Things are reportedly getting spicy at Chili’s.

Chili’s Bar & Grill is drawing a “younger” crowd with greater proclivities to imbibe as the fast-casual chain's dining rooms gradually reopen following coronavirus-related closures amid the pandemic, the CEO of the restaurant’s parent company has claimed.

In this file photo, a customer walks towards the entrance of a Chili's Grill & Bar restaurant in San Antonio, Texas.

In this file photo, a customer walks towards the entrance of a Chili's Grill & Bar restaurant in San Antonio, Texas. (Callaghan O'Hare/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

“That first group that comes in, they’re just a little bit less concerned,” Wyman Roberts, CEO of Chili’s holding company Brinker International Inc. told Bloomberg in an interview Wednesday.

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In this June 15 photo, a sign notifies customers of new regulations outside a Chili's Grill & Bar restaurant in Syracuse, New York.

In this June 15 photo, a sign notifies customers of new regulations outside a Chili's Grill & Bar restaurant in Syracuse, New York. (Maranie Staab/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

As quarantine orders are lifted across the country, the executive said that Chili’s clientele has generally been “a little younger, a little more single and less family” as of late.

“Those folks tend to have a little bit higher alcohol check. They don’t have kids, and they may feel more comfortable having a drink or two,” Roberts explained.

Many diners, however, are “still cautious” about eating inside the restaurant, Roberts said, noting that takeout and delivery options continue to remain popular.

Chili’s Bar & Grill is drawing a “younger” crowd with greater proclivities to imbibe as the fast-casual chain's dining rooms gradually reopen following coronavirus-related closures amid the pandemic, the CEO of the restaurant’s parent company has claimed.

Chili’s Bar & Grill is drawing a “younger” crowd with greater proclivities to imbibe as the fast-casual chain's dining rooms gradually reopen following coronavirus-related closures amid the pandemic, the CEO of the restaurant’s parent company has claimed. (Callaghan O'Hare/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

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While carefully reopening dining rooms amid the ongoing outbreak, Chili’s is heeding guidance from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), and the government.

In the fight against the viral disease, the restaurant is promoting safe social distancing, touch-free payments and enhanced cleaning and sanitization protocol throughout, while requiring employees to wear masks and frequently wash hands, among other COVID-19 health safety response measures.

As of last week, 873 dining rooms across Chili's 1,622 locations were open for business once again, Restaurant Business Online reported.

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