DeNovo Montclair Owner Steps up for Employees During Public Health Crisis

DeNovo,Montclair, Jersey Bites, Demetri Malki, Rachel Bozek

Looking for a way to make things better as everything seemed to just be getting worse, DeNovo owner Demetri Malki came up with a plan. “I said, ‘Let me try to generate some money to keep my staff working and keep food on their table and a roof over their head,'” Malki said. The restaurant is taking orders for pickup (including curbside) and delivery.

Implementing his plan on Tuesday, March 24, Malki has picked up the cost of the food in order to have his team work. Of course, they’re not all working at once, as social distancing is being practiced with care. “Usually we have 10 people in the kitchen—now we have three,” he said.

All the money they’re bringing in—not just the profits—goes to the employees who are working. Part of the Montclair restaurant scene for the past two decades, Malki acknowledged the community’s support during this difficult time with true gratitude in his voice. “The support has been tremendous,” he said.

DeNovo also has an Edgewater location, which is currently closed, but Malki wants to keep that team moving as well. “Now that I see things revving up,” Malki said, “I’m going to try to incorporate my Edgewater people [into the current Montclair operation]. I’m just trying to keep them active and hopefully put food on their table.”

Cacio e Pepe DeNovo European Pub Montclair NJ
Cacio e Pepe

DeNovo is currently operating Tuesday through Sunday, from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. Updates will be posted to their Facebook page, linked here

How to Get Your Order

Malki broke down the ways people can get their orders.

Curbside: “Customers can call us and we bring it out to them.”

Pick up: “In the restaurant we have a long communal table as soon as you walk in. We’ve been using that as our expediting line. We put out the actual credit card voucher and your food, so it’s ready to go when you walk in. If you don’t want to sign you don’t sign. We point to your bag, you grab your bag, and you leave.”

Delivery: “Everything is done. They give us their credit card beforehand, and we’ll run the card outside when we get to the house. We ring the bell, we drop the food off, and then we leave. So there’s no interaction.”

DeNovo European Pub
275 Bellevue Ave
Montclair, NJ 07043