Flying Horse Bar and Brewery managing director Matt Monk says hospitality workers "deserve a pat on the back" for their efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic.
"All hospitality staff have been fantastic," he said.
Mr Monk decided to reward his staff with a night off on Wednesday rather than pursue "one last hurrah" of dine-in sales.
It came on a tough day for the industry with pubs, bars, clubs and nightclubs closed from 11.59pm on Wednesday under the state government's coronavirus restrictions.
They can offer takeaway or home delivery of food and alcohol. Bottle shops can remain open.
"We're probably as frustrated as everyone else," Mr Monk said.
"We've tried to be pretty stoic, as we were last time, because there's not much else you can do."
Mr Monk said the Flying Horse was well prepared for a second lockdown.
"We were lucky with the first lockdown," he said.
"We started drive-through takeaway probably five years ago.
"It wasn't a foreign concept for us and we were able to move into that pretty quickly and smoothly.
"We'll obviously continue that in a limited format."
Hotel Warrnambool publican Steph Philpot said "of course it's not good" of the stage three restrictions.
The hotel, which offers food and beverage, will not remain open for takeaway meals.
"No takewaway, not worth it," Mr Philpot said.
"We didn't do it in first lockdown and we've had no demand for it.
"We've done six takeaway meals in six weeks.
"People want to come in and sit down and enjoy what we have to offer."
Hotel Warrnambool started offering dine-in meals again in June after the first lockdown.
"It's been good, within reason," Mr Philpot said.
"It's given all our staff work.
"It's good for their mental health."
Mr Philpot said his staff were on JobKeeper and had been since the first lockdown.
He said some of his staff would continue administration work.
The Hotel Warrnambool publican said the Commonwealth government's economic scheme for businesses had been "very beneficial".
Mr Monk said most of his staff were on JobKeeper as well.
"It's been vital for business, we would have been under a lot of pressure without it," he said.
Mr Philpot hopes Hotel Warrnambool will be back in action soon.
"I hope we get the (coronavirus) numbers down and get back to operating at a limited level," he said.
Kirkstall Hotel publican Tony Houlihan said he understood the importance of the latest restrictions.
"All I want to see is people stay healthy, if that is what it takes, so be it," he said.
The publican of 35 years acknowledged it would be tough for his patrons without their watering hole.
"For a lot of people, it's not so much about the drinking, it's about the social side of things," he said.
"People can get together and have a yarn.
"Otherwise they're out working in a paddock by themselves and don't see anybody."
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