Why MasterChef's Reynold Poernomo Has Reopened Restaurants Amid Coronavirus Restrictions

Alicia Vrajlal

After closing the doors on his two restaurants following the government’s strict no dine-in rule, ‘MasterChef Australia’ star Reynold Poernomo has revealed why he’s back in business. 

The 26-year-old’s two Koi Dessert Bars in Sydney’s Chippendale and Ryde have reopened for takeaway and delivery ahead of the Easter long weekend, a decision Reynold made to save his livelihood. 


Last month Prime Minister Scott Morrison said pubs, registered and licensed clubs, gyms and indoor sporting venues would shut down, while restaurants and cafes will be limited to takeaway orders only.

With “no specific dates” surrounding these social distancing rules, Reynold said the waiting game wasn’t practical for him and his brothers, whom he opened the restaurants with. 

“We weren’t sure, the government didn’t really say anything about how long this lockdown would be,” he told HuffPost Australia.

MasterChef Australia's Reynold Poernomo

“We thought about it like, ‘Yeah we can’t just sit around and do nothing. We need to do something’.

“It’s getting really boring and everyone in isolation was very bored,” he explained. “There’s a lot of home cooking happening and it’s time for us to come get back into work and support our staff as well, and of course support ourselves.” 


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