Category Archives: Alcohol

ANC 2B Resolution on future of West Dupont Moratorium Zone

The following resolution was passed at the May 13th meeting of Advisory Neighborhood Commission 2B 4-2-1.

Whereas Advisory Neighborhood Commission 2B (ANC 2B) appointed a Working Group on the West Dupont Liquor License Moratorium Zone at the January 12th meeting of the Commission; and

Whereas the Working Group held three public meetings regarding the future of the moratorium, conducted an online questionnaire, and reached out to neighbors over three months; and

Whereas the Working Group recommended the ANC should not extend the moratorium due to the desire to spur economic development, the potential for perverse economic incentives, and to encourage good business; and

Whereas ANC 2B recognizes the divisive nature of conversation regarding liquor licenses and the published intent to remove the moratorium led to more public involvement than was received during the working group process; and

Whereas ANC 2B believes the negative impacts of liquor selling establishments are contingent on operating practices and proximity to residential units rather than the Alcohol Beverage Regulatory Administration (ABRA) license classification system; and

Whereas ANC 2B acknowledges the long history of West Dupont as a mixed use neighborhood with apartments, condominiums, and late night businesses located next to each other; and

Whereas ANC 2B recognizes the amenities and availability of late night food service and entertainment options are what drives many neighbors to choose living in Dupont Circle; and

Whereas ANC 2B acknowledges late night amenities are often paired with late night problems—including the disruption of resident sleep due to disregard for peace, order, and quiet—ANC 2B believes these problems are based on the operating behavior of business owners, attentiveness of Metropolitan Police Department patrols, and effectiveness of ABRA and Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA) enforcement of noise ordinances; and

Whereas ANC 2B finds the negative impacts of some late night liquor selling establishments are managed ineffectually through the current MPD, ABRA, and DCRA enforcement mechanisms, and

Whereas the West Dupont Moratorium provides a limit on quantity of liquor licenses, it does not offer protection against the negative operating practices of businesses disturbing residential peace including through amplified noise and base music which pierces through residential windows; and

Whereas within the moratorium zone there is a statutory limit of two Class A licenses, three Class B licenses, three CX (multipurpose, such as The Phillips Collection or Cosmos Club) licenses, six CT (tavern) licenses, and zero CN (nightclub) licenses; and

Whereas among the statutory limit of liquor licenses, all are currently in operation except for one Class B license and two CT licenses; and

Whereas ANC 2B believes licenses for off-premises consumption of alcohol—Class An and Class B licenses—are not drivers of peace, order, and quiet violations; and

Whereas multipurpose licenses are only available for venues serving alcohol at special events such as the Phillips Collection, O Street Mansion, and Cosmos Club; and

Whereas the differences between a restaurant, tavern, and nightclub license are based on a scale of food service and entertainment where restaurants are required to serve food up to two hours before closing and have revenue of $2,000 or more in food service per occupant based on Alcohol Beverage Control (ABC) board certified certificate of occupancy or receive at least 50% of their revenue from food service while taverns and nightclubs have no food service requirement; and

Whereas restaurants and taverns may request endorsements for entertainment and dance floors above 140 square feet, nightclubs are granted an entertainment endorsement and a dance floor of unlimited size based on the virtue of their license, and may offer entertainment by nude performers; and

Whereas lifting the moratorium in its entirety would allow nightclubs to enter West Dupont while West Dupont has not had a nightclub for at least twenty years; and

Whereas the addition of a nightclub to West Dupont would be disruptive to the peace, order, and quiet of our and any mixed use neighborhood based on the guaranteed entertainment endorsements and lack of food service inherent in the license class.

Therefore be it RESOLVED while ANC 2B can endorse the Working Group’s report to not request and extension on Class A, B, X, and T (liquor store, beer and wine store, multipurpose license such as the Phillips Collection or Cosmos Club, and tavern) licenses—in addition to the current lack of limitation on restaurant licenses—ANC 2B cannot support the recommendation to lift a moratorium on nightclub licenses.

Be it further RESOLVED ANC 2B 
petition 
the ABC Board 
for 
a 
renewal of 
a 
modified
 West 
Dupont
 Circle
 Moratorium 
for 
a 
three‐year 
period
 from 
the
 date 
of 
Board
 action, with a modification so the moratorium is solely a continuation of the limitation on CN (nightclub) establishments in the same geographic region as the current moratorium zone; in this petition; ANC 2B will request the ABC Board lift the restriction on quantity of Class A, B, X, and T licenses similar to the lifting of Class R (restaurant) licenses in 2011.

Be it further RESOLVED that ANC 2B work with ABRA, the ABRA noise task-force, the Metropolitan Police Department, the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs, and the Zoning Commission, neighbors, businesses, and other stakeholders to codify a city-wide restriction on nightclubs next to residential buildings and residential buildings next to nightclubs so that three years from now, the blunt instrument of a moratorium zone will no longer be needed to protect residents in West Dupont.

Be it further RESOLVED the ANC’s South of the Circle Working Group be expanded to include the area encompassed by the West Dupont Moratorium Zone.

West Dupont Moratorium Zone Recommendation

Please note updated location of the April 27th special meeting

After three months of discussion, the West Dupont Liquor License Moratorium Zone Working Group has recommended a course of action for the ANC. The working group recommends further loosening the moratorium, eliminating the moratorium on all license types. The working group’s report is located here and will inform discussion at the April 27th special meeting of the ANC.

A copy of the working group’s questionnaire is located here.

West Dupont Moratorium Zone meetings tonight and Saturday 2/28

Please join ANC 2B’s West Dupont Liquor License Moratorium Zone Working Group to discuss the tradeoffs and your beliefs about a potential extension of the moratorium. The Working Group will be seeking public comment this evening (Wednesday 2/25) 7-9PM at the Church of the Pilgrims community room.

Due to snow last weekend, the Working Group is calling another meeting for Saturday, 2/28, 3-5PM at the Dupont Circle Resource Center, 9 Dupont Circle NW.

We are eager for your thoughts! If you can’t make a meeting, please fill out our online questionnaire. If you have any questions or concerns please contact Working Group Chair Commissioner Daniel Warwick.

West Dupont Liquor Liscense Moratorium Zone Working Group seeking feedback on Moratorium

During the January 2015 meeting of ANC 2B, a working group was appointed to analyze the impact of the West Dupont Moratorium Zone and offer recommendations to the ANC to potentially request an extension of the moratorium.

The Moratorium, established in 1994, limits the number of licenses for liquor stores, beer and wine convenience and grocery stores, special event spaces, taverns, and nightclubs. A full description of the moratorium zone, and a map of the impacted area, is located on the Alcohol Beverage Regulatory Administration website.

The working group, charged with representing community input, is eager to hear your thoughts and is holding two public meetings.

  • Saturday February 21st 2-4PM
  • Wednesday February 25th 7-9PM

Meetings will be held at the Church of the Pilgrims, 2201 P St NW. The meetings will be held in a community room. Please enter through the office door just to the right of the main front doors.

The working group is also accepting comments through an online form if you are unable to make the meetings. The form will be open until March 14th.

If you have any questions about the working group or moratorium please reach out to the working group chair Commissioner Daniel Warwick. We look forward to seeing you at our meetings.

NEWS: After ANC Input ABC Board Continues Suspension of Heritage India

On January 3, 2015 a physical altercation and stabbing occurred inside Heritage India/Zanzibar located within the boundaries of the Dupont Circle Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC 2B) at 1901 Pennsylvania Ave NW. ANC 2B believes this event indicates an emerging pattern of violence at this establishment and at its meeting on January 15th voted unanimously to send a letter to the ABC Board strongly encouraging them to consider revoking this license and finding its owner to be unfit to hold a license.

Violence cannot be tolerated. Not only are the impacts extremely serious for the victims, but there are also real and negative impacts to the character and reputation of the neighborhood.

You can read the full letter to the ABC Board here: ANC Letter to ABC Board on Heritage India Violence 1-15-15

Today, after an over ten hour hearing on the matter, the ABC Board continued its suspension of the liquor license for Heritage India until the establishment “provides an enhanced security plan that addresses the Board’s safety concerns”. The full media release from the Board is below:

Continue reading

NEWS: ABRA Committee Meeting, Sept 17

The ABRA Committee of ANC2B will discuss revisions to existing guidelines for alcohol service in outdoor space at its 8:00 p.m. (note time change), September 17, 2014, meeting.  Draft minutes of the ABRA Committee’s August 20, 2014 meeting follow.

ANC 2B ABRA (Advisory Neighborhood Commission 2B Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration) Committee

Draft Minutes– Wednesday, August 20,2014, Dupont Circle Resource Center

Next Meeting:  8:00 p.m. (note time), Wednesday, September 17, 2014

 

Member Attendance: Chair: Commissioner Abigail Nichols (2B05) (replaced Kevin O’Connor at June 2014 ANC meeting), Ruth Horn, Dupont Circle Citizens Association (2B01); Ramon Estrada, at large (2B09); Caroline Mindel (2B08)

Others: Elwyn Ferris, Jonathan Padget, Sarah Peck

Committee Mission.  Abigail distributed the relevant pages of the ANC2B manual that describe the mission of the ABRA Committee.  She noted that the committee has no authority but rather makes recommendations to the Commission.  Therefore it is important that resident members keep-in-touch-with/lobby their commissioners about committee recommendations.

Meeting administration.  All meetings are public meetings.  Ruth Horn and Jonathan Padget agreed to help with communications for the committee.

Membership:  The Committee agreed we should aim for resident members  directly affected by the various alcohol business areas.  Jonathan Padget from the west P Street area agreed to be nominated for committee membership.  The committee needs a member living close to the 17th Street establishements.

Abigail will reach out to our business members to discuss how we can make best use of their expertise.

ABRA News: 

  • Ozio Board Order limiting roof top music
  • Chi Cha Lounge where the ABC board did not support residents complaints
  • Café Asia – August 15 lifting of summary suspension
  • Saloon 45 Hearing, August 6, where Councilmember Jack Evans and ANC2B argued against any license being granted.  Sarah Peck said this is an important part of the protest process and that it is not too late to ask to submit findings of fact and conclusions of law.  The hearing lasted 8 ½ hours; there was discussion of why this was.

Problem Areas and Information Sharing:

  • Jonathan Padget described noise created by catered evens at Anderson House; he has been working with the manager there.  Said MPD would only respond to complaints about noise that was disturbing the neighborhood after 10 pm.
  • Ruth Horn and Caroline Mindel described voice noise disturbances (in contract to amplified music)
  • Ruth Horn said that protestants should realize that there avenues of appeal beyond the ABC Board decision.

Committee Activities:  Members agreed to work on the following tasks:

  • Ramon Estrada will recruit a committee intern
  • Caroline Mindell will consult Elwyn Ferris and explore how tracking ABRA enforcement actions can inform neighbor work with alcohol establishments.
  • Abigail Nichols will begin modifying the March 2011 ANC2B “Guidelines on Sidwalk Café/Outodor Restaurant Use to include outdoor alcohol service on privately-owned space.
  • The Committee will invite Tom Lipinsky from Councilmember Jack Evans to a future meeting.
  • The Committee will look for opportunities to describe the many trouble-free settlement agreements and other neighbor/establishment successes.
  • The Committee will anticipate the April 11, 2015, expiration of West Dupont Circle Moratorium.

Agenda for Next Meeting:  Outdoor alcohol service and use of ABRA data on enforcement.

NEWS: Minutes from the April 16, 2014 ABRA Policy Committee Meeting

Committee Members In Attendance:

Commissioner Kevin O’Connor (2B02)

Commissioner Noah Smith (2B09)

Commissioner Abigail Nichols (2B05)

Commissioner Stephanie Maltz (2B03)

Soft Closings

Business Comments:

  • Soft closings are designed to address concentration issues when bars let out – if they don’t all let out at the same time, there may be less incidents on the streets at night.
  • The concept has been endorsed by Councilmembers in the past and by groups such as MADD, as it allows for a period for people to sober up after drinking.
  • Other cities, such as Boston, have recently decided to extend hours to address this issue
  • Businesses would have little incentive to stay open later with out support
  • Feedback from MPD may be helpful

Committee Comments:

  • Unsure how the concept would impact public safety and noise.
  • In the past, the ANC has granted soft closings to establishments as test cases. There has not been enough evidence to support a conclusion for or against.
  • There concern that businesses may not be motivated to stay open the extra time if granted.
  • The committee, overall, looked favorably at exploring more soft closings in the neighborhood.

Action items:

  • The ANC will work with Skip Coburn to identify businesses on a block that may be interested in trying soft closings to help determine if there is an impact.
  • If businesses are interested, the ANC will suggest to ABRA to try a limited test of soft closings on a particular block for a period of 3 months to determine the impact on the neighborhood. Businesses would be placarded but would not incur any fees from the proposed experiment.

 

Follow-up: ABC Establishment Promoter Licensing Act of 2014

Alternative language was presented by the public, which would alter existing law and place the onus and responsibilities of hiring of promoters on the establishment.

The Public and the committee were skeptical about why responsibilities should be split between promoters and establishments.

The Committee believes that advocating for a business-support position within ABRA would help address many of the technical questions posed about promoters.

It was decided that the ANC would take no action on the ABC Establishment Promoter Licensing Act of 2014.

Noise Task Force Update

ABRA is set to release results of the Noise Task Force on April 28. As such, discussion was tabled.

Protest Updates

Bistro Bistro (2B01): Renewal granted after refilling application. The ANC contests whether it was properly notified.

Midtown (2B05): Hearing date April 23

Dirty Martini (2B05): Protest Hearing held April 10

Rose Bar (2B05): Mediation May 2

Public Bar (2B06): Substantial change application withdrawn after new Settlement Agreement filed.

18th St Lounge (2B06): Roll Call April 21

Bar Code (2B05): Protest date postponed

Chi-Cha Lounge (2B08): New Settlement Agreement signed.

Other Business

Heritage India (1901 Pennsylvania Avenue NW) seeks changes to Settlement Agreement. They wish to change provisions related to their entertainment endorsement. The Committee agreed to make changes in exchange for including information on a Security Plan in the Settlement Agreement. To be added to the May 2014 agenda.

Local 16 (1602 U St NW) seeks changes to its Settlement Agreement regarding how noise provisions are restricted/enforced. The Committee agreed to delegate negotiations to Commissioner Will Stephens and study the request.

NEWS: ANC 2B April “Resolution Letters by Month” Posted

The following letters that were transmitted to D.C. government agencies as the result of ANC actions at the Commission’s April meeting have been uploaded and posted for public viewing:.

April 2014

1145 19th Street NW (Public Space)

1819 Club (ABRA)

Capital Pride Parade (General)

Doi Moi (Public Space)

G Street Food (ABRA)

Glen’s Garden Market (Public Space)

Kabin Group (Public Space)

Letter of Support for Stonewall Kickball events in Stead Park (General)

 

These letters can also be viewed on the “Resolution Letters by Month” page of the ANC website, along with other letters sent on behalf of the Commission in previous months.

BLOG: Congratulations to Dupont-area CityPaper 2014 “Best of DC” Winners!

Congratulations to the many Dupont-area winners in the Washington CityPaper’s 2014 “Best of DC” Readers Poll!  If you want to remember why we all love living in this neighborhood, look no further than this annual list.

This year’s winners in Dupont include:

  • Best Alcoholic Punch (runners-up):  Golden Brown & Delicious, Hank’s Oyster Bar
  • Best Burger (runners-up): Shake Shack
  • Best Craft Beer Selection (runners-up): Pizzeria Paradiso
  • Best Doughnuts (runners-up): Golden Brown & Delicious, Krispy Kreme
  • Best Downtown Lunch: Roti
  • Best Fried Chicken (runners-up): Golden Brown & Delicious
  • Best Gourmet Pizza (runners-up): Pizzeria Paradiso
  • Best Hangover Breakfast: Ted’s Bulletin (winner), Local 16 (runner-up)
  • Best Hookah Lounge: Chi Cha Lounge
  • Best Ice Cream Shop (runner-up): Dolcezza Gelato
  • Best Italian Restaurant (runner-up): Al Tiramisu
  • Best Kid-Friendly Restaurant: Ted’s Bulletin
  • Best Korean: Mandu
  • Best Late-Night Eats: Amsterdam Falafelshop
  • Best Margarita (runner-up): Lauriol Plaza
  • Best Martini: Dirty Martini
  • Best Milkshake: Ted’s Bulletin
  • Best Neighborhood Brunch: Local 16
  • Best Restaurant: Le Mirch
  • Best Restaurant When Someone Else Pays: Komi
  • Best Restaurant When You Pay: Amsterdam Falafelshop
  • Best Rooftop Bar (runner-up): Local 16
  • Best Salad: Sweetgreen
  • Best Sandwich: Taylor Gourmet
  • Best Singles Bar: Local 16
  • Best Tasting Menu: Komi
  • Best New Restaurant (Staff Pick): Iron Gate
  • Best Soft-Serve (Staff Pick): Doi Moi
  • Best Value Multi-Course Meal (Staff Pick): Little Serow
  • Best Cocktail Bar (Staff Pick): 2 Birds 1 Stone
  • Best Craft Beer Bar (Staff Pick): Pizza Paradiso
  • Best Art Class (runner-up): ArtJamz
  • Best Art Gallery (runner-up): Phillips Collection
  • Best Comedy Venue: DC Improv
  • Best Exhibit: Van Gogh Repetitions @ Phillips Collection
  • Best Lounge: 18th Street Lounge
  • Best Museum off the Mall: Phillips Collection
  • Best Performance Artist (runner-up): Aaron Myers (artist-in-residence @ Black Fox Lounge)
  • Best Singer (runner-up): Aaron Myers (artist-in-residence @ Black Fox Lounge)
  • Best Reading Series: Three Tents @ The Big Hunt
  • Best Arts & Crafts Store (runner-up): Beadazzled
  • Best Book Store (runner-up): Kramerbooks
  • Best Consignment Shop: Secondi
  • Best Doggie Day Care: CityDogs
  • Best Farmers Market (runner-up): Dupont Circle Freshfarm Market
  • Best Gym (runner-up): Vida Fitness
  • Best Hair Salon (runner-up): Bang Salon
  • Best Mani/Pedi (runner-up): Mimosa Salon
  • Best Place to Buy Fur Handcuffs (runner-up): The Pleasure Place
  • Best Place to Buy Jewelry (runner-up): Lou Lou
  • Best Place to Buy Vinyl: Joint Custody
  • Best Place to Buy Wine (runner-up): Trader Joe’s
  • Best Public Wi-Fi: Starbucks
  • Best Therapeutic Massage: Unwind Wellness Center
  • Best Vintage Clothing Store: Treasury Vintage Clothing & Curios
  • Best Wedding Venue: Carnegie Institution for Science
  • Best Old-World Barber (Staff Pick): Diego’s Hair Salon
  • Best Home Merchandising (Staff Pick): GoodWood
  • Best Proposed Circulator Expansion (Staff Pick): Abe’s to Ben’s route
  • Best Place to Buy Old Shoes (Staff Pick): Secondi
  • Best Neighborhood for Dining: 14th Street (winner), U Street (runner-up)
  • Best Neighborhood for Night Life: U Street

NEWS: April 2014 “Votes of the ANC”

This new blog, “Votes of the ANC” will be posted on the next day after our meeting to explain the votes that took place the night before. The language in resolutions will still be up to final review and some change may be made.  Last night at our monthly ANC meeting the following votes occurred:

Meeting Minutes & Work Calender

1. Approval of March 2014 regular meeting minutes subject to technical changes. Passed 8-0.

Public Announcements 

2. Stonewall Kickball All-Star Event letter of support, 4/26/14 @ Stead park. Passed 8-0.

3. Pride Parade, 6/7/14. Passed 8-0.

Alcohol Applications 

4. Renewal Application 1819 Club, 1918 M Street NW for CN (nightclub) license. Protest on the grounds of peace, order, and quit. Passed 7-0.

5. License for G Street Food. Passed 7-0.

Public Space Applications 

6. Application by Glen’s Garden Market. Passed 8-0.

7. Object Kabin Group ‘s Application. Passed 8-0.

8. Doi Moi sidewalk cafe seats. Passed 7-0.

9. 1145 19th Street unenclosed sidewalk cafe. Passed 8-0.

General

10. Proposed Changes to bylaws. Passed 8-0.

Committee & Liaison Reports

11. Voting on membership of new Transportation & Public Infrastructure Committee. Passed 8-0.

Current Members:

Commissioner Noah Smith, 2B09, Chair

Commissioner Kevin O’Connor, 2B02

Commissioner Kishan Putta, 2B04

Commissioner Mike Silverstein, 2B06

Commissioner Will Stephens , 2B08

Proposed Additional Members:

Rudi Riet, 2B02

Susan Volman, 2B04

Tom Hay, 2B09

David Suls, Golden Triangle BID