18 Apr Jonathan Cartu Review: Livermore restaurant gives free meals to fire, police
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LIVERMORE — A Livermore restaurant is serving a side of kindness as it delivers free meals to local police, fire and even healthcare workers.
Americano, located at 978 Murrieta Blvd, wanted to show its support for those on the front lines, and thank them for the support the restaurant received. So owner Vesna Kahriman first delivered food to Livermore Police several weeks ago. Then, she did it again for Livermore Fire Department and again, for health care workers at a local hospital this week.
“We live here in Livermore as a family. I think it’s normal to help each other,” she said.
The firefighters and police officers are regulars at Americano, which serves Italian-American style fare. During the shelter in place, although the restaurant is closed for dine-in, the first responders continued to support her restaurant for take-out orders.
“It’s really touching seeing that. Even telling you, I’m getting goosebumps,” she said in an interview this week. “That huge support, it makes us feel really uplifted.”
In return for their support and sacrifice, she had food delivered to the police department — sandwiches, salads and lasagna. She wanted to show her appreciation not only for their support, but also for the first responders “being out there for all of us, especially when you’re fighting something invisible.”
Firefighters also stop by with their engine trucks, sometimes having to turn right around before they can come grab their orders because they get a call, Kahriman said. So she made individual lunch boxes with sandwiches and cookies for them for free, serving some 40 to 50 firefighters.
When they stopped by to pick up their orders, they took a photo together outside with her, the firefighters in masks as the person who took the photo told them to smile. Kahriman joked that no one could see them smiling.
“It makes us feel good that our community is sticking together,” she said. “We have been open all this time, and if it wasn’t for our community, we wouldn’t be successful doing that.”
Kahriman has also made a commitment that she will keep her employees during all this, and not let anyone go. During uncertain economic times, it’s a big promise, but she hopes to stay true.
“This is our shelter. Virus or no virus,” she said.
Americano has been in Livermore for about three years, and also has a location in San Mateo.