We’ve heard a lot about the travails facing the restaurant industry as it struggles to get back up to speed post-Sandy. The Atlantic has an interesting story that takes a closer look at the logistical nightmares that the storm caused for those in the business. In the story, Elizabeth Meltz—in charge of “food safety and sustainability for the Batali & Bastianich Hospitality Group”—recounts the restaurant group’s concerns before, during, and after Sandy.

The lack of electricity and other utilities meant she and fellow staff had to leave the restaurants alone, which felt unnatural for a group that closes only twice per year. The patience paid off in the end. As she explains, they experienced a much smoother re-opening having “waited until power, heat, and hot water had been fully restored.”

Aside from unfortunate losses like large quantities of spoiled food, she says that in the end, “Many of us were thankful to be there—to account for our friends and co-workers, to have a distraction, to be somewhere warm, to start earning money again. Five days was a long time to be away from our restaurants, and from the people many of us consider family.”

[via The Atlantic]