Feb 11, 2022 - Food and Drink

D.C.'s The Big Board wants to operate as a carryout

Big Board

Photo: Nick Johnston/Axios

The Big Board's owner doesn't deny that the H Street restaurant knowingly disregarded D.C.'s vaccine and mask mandates, but they want to get back to business — as a carryout.

Driving the news: Owner Eric Flannery and his lawyer Katie Lane Chaverri appeared before the D.C. Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration's ABC Board on Thursday to appeal the suspension of the bar's liquor license.

Catch up quick: The Big Board was closed by DC Health earlier this month after refusing to enforce the city's vaccine and mask mandates.

  • In late January, ABRA suspended the restaurant's liquor license following multiple warnings and fines.
  • The Big Board's initial hearing was meant to take place last week, but Flannery requested a postponement because he couldn’t find a lawyer.

Details: Chaverri said at the hearing that Flannery could not "legally and morally" comply with the mayor's vaccine mandate.

  • Chaverri asked that the Big Board instead be allowed to operate as a carryout to allow staff to continue to work, and added that the restaurant will use masks.
  • Lawyers representing D.C. said the city wants to keep the suspension in place.

Of note: The ABC Board doesn't have the authority to decide whether the restaurant can operate as a carryout, the board chair explained during the hearing.

What's next: The board has three days to determine whether to extend the suspension or reinstate the liquor license.


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