THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – A cafe in Thousand Oaks gives you a little taste of France each time you walk through its doors.

What You Need To Know

  • Ventura County allowing restaurants to reopen for dine-in

  • Ventura County is first in SoCal approved for accelerated reopening

  • Chocolatine French Café reopened on May 23

  • Restaurants will have to abide by new regulations

Sandrine Gaudin and her husband Ludovic used their savings to buy the cafe in 2014 when they moved from France to the United States. They have been doing take-out and delivery orders since COVID-19 hit, but on May 23 they re-opened to dine-in customers.

Sandrine says she is excited, but also admits a little stressed.

“I feel like a kid you know when for two months we tell you don’t touch this, don’t do that, don’t hug someone and all of a sudden they say, now you can do it but you have to follow this, this and this. So it’s like the kids whenever we allow them more freedom,” says Sandrine.



She sees the pandemic is a little different. Before she was a cafe owner Sandrine was a research biologist, which is why she is extra careful, sanitizing each pen used by her customers and even sanitizing debit cards before she hands them back to customers.

“We used to have magazines so people can read but now I have to remove it because I don’t want to clean every page of the magazine,” says Sandrine.

Needless to say she is ready to re-open, even taking down most of the decor in her cafe so there is less to touch and sanitize. She says usually they have eight tables inside, but once they reopen there will only be four in order to have more space between tables.

According to the new rules, her front door must always remain open so that customers don’t touch the door.

Despite the extra measures she has to take, she is ready, ready to see her customers, the people who have helped keep her cafe in business through this pandemic.