In response to some underage alcohol sales at Caliroll Express, Isla Vista is in the midst of a sake bomb-free month.
According to Alcoholic Beverage Control Supervising Investigator Leslie Pond, an ABC officer observed staff members serving alcohol to minors on Oct. 28, 2007. As a result, Caliroll’s beer and wine license was suspended for 30 days, which ends March 20. Caliroll owner Jason Yoo said that he neglected to check for a for age verification due to a high volume of customers.
“Too many people were in there and I wasn’t regulating properly,” Yoo said. “It was my first Halloween in Isla Vista and I didn’t know that it was going to be that ridiculous in the restaurant.”
Yoo said he sold alcohol to an underage customer after forgetting to check his driver license and realized his mistake after serving the beer. He also said underage customers were drinking leftover beers that were still on the tables.
Pond said that Yoo agreed to the 30-day suspension instead of contesting the evidence against him and that several other citations were issued in connection to the minors drinking the leftover beer. Yoo said that he could serve beverages again later this month and was grateful that the brief dry spell has not hurt his business.
“The license will be in my possession on the 20th [of March], and on the 21st I can start selling alcohol again,” Yoo said. “It doesn’t really affect the business that much. I know that the quality of food is there, and people usually come for the food, not the alcohol.”
Pond said that Caliroll employees should remain wary of serving minors in the future, especially due to the restaurant’s proximity to the Isla Vista Foot Patrol station. If the business is caught again, Pond said, ABC will be able to administer heftier penalties.
“We’ll be on them like white on rice,” Pond said.
Alcohol licenses are a valuable commodity in I.V. due to a standing agreement between the Isla Vista Foot Patrol and the ABC to not issue any new licenses. According to Pond, a license must transfer from an existing owner.
Eclectic I.V. owner CT Brandt said that it took him about 10 months to obtain a beer license for his restaurant.
“We acquired the license from Laundry Lounge,” said Brandt. “The license was sitting inactive, so I spoke to the owner, who agreed to transfer it.”
Brandt said that he sought the beer license to compliment the food, and is seeking to upgrade the license include the ability to sell wine as well. In return for the license, Brandt said that Eclectic I.V. made a charitable donation of an undisclosed amount to a local nonprofit school.
Eclectic I.V. is offering happy hour discounts and staging acoustic performances throughout the week in an effort to promote their new license. According to Brandt, he makes sure his staff checks all IDs to ensure that he is able to keep the license he waited so long to obtain.
“We card everyone who buys beers,” he said. “In the current climate of I.V., you have to.”