[EVG photo from Monday]
As noted the other day... The State Liquor Authority (SLA) has temporarily yanked the liquor license from Dahlia's on Second Avenue and East Fifth Street after the NYPD found a lot teens drinking inside the Mexican restaurant on Jan. 30, the Post reported.
The SLA has posted its media advisory about the incident... and the reported number of underage drinkers actually numbered 50, and not 43 as the Post noted.
Per the SLA statement (PDF):
The New York State Liquor Authority (SLA) suspended the license of Vargomez Corporation, doing business as “Mary Ann’s” at 300 East 5th Street in Manhattan. The suspension was ordered by Members of the SLA, Chairman Vincent Bradley and Commissioner Kevin Kim at a regular meeting of the Full Board on Tuesday February 16, 2016. Effective immediately, no alcohol can be served or consumed on the premises.
On January 30, 2016, New York City Police Department (NYPD) officers from the 9th Precinct responded to a 911 call reporting underage drinking at the bar. Upon arrival, NYPD officers found the doors of the bar locked and observed numerous patrons appearing to be under twenty-one years of age drinking at the over-crowded bar. After gaining entry to the premises, NYPD officers documented sales to fifty underage patrons, forty-two of which were 18 and younger, including five 16 year olds and one 15 year old teenager.
On February 12, 2016, the SLA charged Mary Ann’s bar with 55 violations, including 50 separate sales to minors, failure to supervise, and code violations for exceeding maximum capacity and having locked doors. The licensee, present at the time of the incident, was also arrested.
The SLA’s decision to summarily suspend a license is not a final determination on the merits of the case. The licensee is entitled to an expedited hearing before an administrative law judge. An order of summary suspension remains in effect until such time as it is modified by the SLA or a reviewing Court.
Meanwhile, the Mexican restaurant was reportedly well-known among underage drinkers. Washington Square News, NYU's independent student newspaper, talked to underclassman about the bust in an article published yesterday.
An excerpt from the students interviewed:
“Honestly I’m surprised they weren’t shut down sooner. The restaurant is right next to the police department so it really wasn’t smart for them to have such a lax ID policy. I only went there twice because it’s one thing to see underage college students sipping on overpriced mojitos but most of the people there looked like high school freshmen. It was really disturbing.” — Mairead McConnell, freshman
“I think that it’s sad but like I guess it had to be done if people didn’t show up making a scene when they left then maybe it would’ve stayed under the radar for longer. The first couple weeks everyone went and drank there. It was a cool spot before the lines went out the door and were two hours long. But it wasn’t my number one spot.” — Thomas Fortune, freshman
“I was definitely sad to hear about Dahlia’s, but when I read the news article with my roommate we couldn’t help but laugh because we were not surprised in the slightest. I feel badly for the employees who were arrested because there are countless other bars and restaurants who serve minors nightly, but in all honesty Dahlia’s was infamously known by NYU freshmen and local high-schoolers for not [asking for ID], so I figured it was only some time until they got caught.” — Taber Brown, sophomore
Dahlia's remains open for food service. They are not allowed to serve alcohol for now.
Previously on EV Grieve:
Slowly but surely the exterior of the former Mary Ann's is becoming Dahlia's
Report: Dahlia's busted after cops find 43 minors drinking inside locked restaurant