Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Greater Boston Area >
May 1, 2010 05:59 PM

How does water-main break affect Boston restos?


As most by now should already know, because of a water-main break Boston and many (but not all) the surrounding communities are under a boil-water for at least a minute requirement.

Currently is carrying the story.

Cambridge gets its water from an independent source and is not affected.

Apart from Cambridge, it strikes me that certain food preparations will be more cumbersome since cold foods that require rinsing will now have to be prepared with boiled and then cooled water. Ice cube makers connected directly to water supplies will have to be shut down. As a result iced drinks will be very difficult to prepare.

Bottom line: if you want a pina colada you will probably have to get to your favorite Harvard Square watering hole.

The following are effected:

Lynnfield Water District

  1. Had to pay for $2 bottle of water today at Cafe Belo!:(

    1. I was in Artu when I heard about it. So, no tap water with the meal which is okay with me. They were boiling their water. Before I left a Boston police officer was going door to door to all the restaurants making sure everyone was aware. I live in Quincy so I guess I'll be boiling my water as well.

      1. Places like Starbucks can't serve coffee (what a shame) but the bigger restaurants should be able to deal with it with bottled water or by boiling the water.

        6 Replies
        1. re: PatsMoose

          My concern is the prep and washing of food, dishes and utensils, something we've been advised not to do using tap water, including running a dishwasher. Ditched our plans to dine out today because of these issues.

          1. re: tweetie

            Likewise, washing hands is a problem in restrooms for both patrons and workers.

            1. re: Spenbald

              We had the same concern as tweetie. I just can't imagine how a restaurant can handle the clean water issue. Certainly not what our economy needed. Though we were thinking about places like fried fish shacks that serve on paper plates?

              We will spend today grilling up food (we can avoid having to hand wash pans) to reheat as leftovers for the week. And probably get easy to clean vegetables like zucchini and corn on the cob.

              1. re: Spenbald

                Since bathing and showering in the water is considered safe, I feel quite safe washing my hands with it.

                1. re: Parsnipity

                  The advisories I've heard say you should boil the water you wash your hands with or use sanitizer.

            2. re: PatsMoose

              Saw that Starbux in Brookline Village was locked- woman tugging at the door! Don't know if a sign was posted. I'm off to buy some ice cube trays.

            3. Make sure you ask your server how they are dealing with the problem. I went to The Buttery today and asked how they were handling the issue. A server explained that their water was filtered, and that the espresso machine reached 175 degrees. I had to explain to them that filters do not remove bacteria, and that 175 degrees was not hot enough to effectively kill bacteria. They were dumbfounded, they said they had called the owner that morning and he said to open as usual. Disturbing that someone would open under those conditions.

              1 Reply
              1. re: ChickenBrocandZiti

                Shouldn't an espresso machine hit a temp much hotter than 175? It's steam at 9 bars of pressure--must be > 212, right?

              2. All restos are closed in Lexington as far as I can tell, except for Bruegger's Bagels. They're not serving any drinks other than bottled, and no veggies on the sandwiches. Their bagels come to them already boiled, so they just bake them off.