How a Small Bar Battled to Survive the Coronavirus

The Daily

By The New York Times

How a Small Bar Battled to Survive the Coronavirus

Tuesday, 6 October

This episode contains strong language.

Jack Nicas, a technology reporter for The New York Times, moved to Oakland, Calif., five years ago. When he arrived, he set out to find a bar of choice. It quickly became the Hatch.

Unpretentious, cheap and relaxed, the Hatch was a successful small business until the coronavirus hit.

After the announcement in March that California would order bars and restaurants to shut down, Jack decided to follow the fortunes of the Hatch. Over six months, he charted the struggle to keep the tavern afloat and the hardship suffered by its staff.

“I can’t afford to be down in the dumps about it,” Louwenda Kachingwe, the Hatch’s owner, told Jack as he struggled to come up with ideas to keep the bar running during the shutdown. “I have to be proactive, because literally people are depending on it.”

Guest: Jack Nicas, a technology reporter for The Times.

For more information on today’s episode, visit nytimes.com/thedaily

Background reading:

Here’s the full story of the Oakland tavern and its staff as they try to weather the fallout from the pandemic.
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