A majority of Alexandria businesses are feeling the pain from COVID-19, but Del Ray’s butcher shop Let’s Meat on the Avenue is limiting the number of items customers can buy.
“It’s just a different animal now, because people are buying in mass quantities because they’re eating at home for their three meals a day,” shop owner Donna Welch told ALXnow. “Now customers can only get two dozen eggs at a time, you can only get two pounds of ground beef at a time, because people were coming in and buying 10 pounds of ground beef and dozens and dozens of eggs.”
The butcher shop is open, but only for one customer at a time. Customers aren’t allowed to touch anything in the shop, not even the door handles.
“We open and close the door for them, and they are not allowed to touch anything on the shelves or in the cases,” Welch said. “We will get all of that for them. And they have to stay within a central area that’s taped off.”
She added, “We’re doing phone orders, so the phone’s ringing off the hook. We’re also keeping our distance between each other and we’re doing face masks and gloves, and yes, we’re sanitizing everything all the time.”
Let’s Meat on the Avenue has been at 2403 Mount Vernon Avenue for 12 years, and Welch and her family have owned it for nearly half that time. The company employs five staffers, all of whom are still working. The shop specializes in pasture-fed, free range and hormone-free meat and poultry from farms in Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania and Delaware.
“We’re holding our own, that’s for sure. It’s a lot more work, but we’re keeping everybody employed,” Welch said. “I want to say thank you to the Del Ray community for your support. We have gotten so much encouragement from our customers, and this is just the best neighborhood in the world. They are constantly asking how we’re doing, and giving us encouragement. We appreciate it.”
Let’s Meat on the Avenue is open on Tuesday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., on Wednesday to Friday from 11 a.m to 7 p.m., on Saturday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. The shop is closed Monday.