Governor Inslee Moves Remaining 6 Regions into
Phase 2 of his Healthy Washington Reopening Plan

On Sunday, Feb. 14, Washington Governor Jay Inslee announced that the remaining six regions of his Healthy Washington reopening plan can now move into Phase 2.

The North, Northwest, North Central, East, South Central and Southwest regions, as outlined on the accompanying map, moved into Phase 2 beginning Monday, February 15. During Phase 2, indoor service is permitted at 25% capacity with restrictions. The Puget Sound and West regions are already in Phase 2.

Under the plan’s phases, the following restrictions are in place for eating and drinking establishments in Phase 2.

Indoor service: 25% capacity, 11 p.m. close. Maximum 6 people per table, limit 2 households per table

Outdoor & open air service: 11 p.m. close, maximum 6 per table, limit 2 households per table.

Under what he calls his “Open Air” policy, Governor Inslee has made it possible for restaurants, bars and wineries across the state to serve customers inside at 25% capacity while keeping bay-style doors, usually reserved for warm weather, open to increase air flow.

Under the new guidelines, open air seating is defined as “a structure with one or more permeable exterior walls, allowing outside air to easily exchange within occupied seating areas while maintaining carbon dioxide levels below 450 ppm.”

Permeable exterior walls are defined as open bay doors, multiple open windows, screened openings, open tent panels, ventilation holes in side panels and uncovered lattice.  Not included are single windows and doors.  The Washington Hospitality Association breaks down possible seating configurations and other specific requirements for open-air dining on its website.

All other restrictions for Phase 1 still apply. Those rules include a 25 percent capacity limit on all seating, tables capped at six people from no more than two separate households, no alcohol service after 11 pm and tables spaced six feet or more apart.

As part of Governor Inslee’s Healthy Washington plan, the state was largely divided based on Emergency Medical Services (EMS) regions used for evaluating healthcare services. There are eight regions divided according to available health care services, based on metrics such as hospitalizations, case data and disease mobility.

Every region must meet three out of four metrics before moving to Phase 2, and to remain in Phase 2.

Because the Governor’s Healthy Washington Plan has so many variables, the only way to find out for sure what restrictions your favorite wineries face in Phase 2 is to contact them directly.

You can find the phone number and website address for every winery and every tasting room in Washington by logging onto: www.DiscoverWashingtonWine.com.  You’ll find a complete list of every winery in Washington by clicking on the “Wineries” tab at the top of any page of the website, and you’ll find a list of every tasting room in the state by clicking on the “Tasting Rooms & Wine Bars” tab.

Many wineries throughout the state are also producing live “Virtual Tastings” to keep in touch with their customers.  By doing a little research, you can find out if your favorite winery is hosting virtual tastings.  Not only are these tastings informative, they are a great way to meet other wine drinkers who are connecting to the tasting by Zoom or other social media platform.