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LA City Council Says Restaurants Can Officially Refuse Anti-Maskers

Plus, the Griddle gets a new Hollywood location, Majordomo has patio dining, and more

County sees alarming rise in coronavirus - during the Coronavirus pandemic Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images
Mona Holmes is a reporter for Eater Los Angeles and a regular contributor to KCRW radio. She has covered restaurants, dining, and food culture since 2016. In 2022, the James Beard Foundation nominated her for a Jonathan Gold Local Voice Award.

On Wednesday, the Los Angeles City Council gave restaurants additional ammunition to combat customers without face masks. A new citywide ordinance from the council enables business owners to refuse service or entry to anyone entering the premises without face coverings, and is expected to be signed immediately by the mayor.

Councilman Herb Wesson first introduced the ordinance in July, though it has only gone into effect this month and won’t expire until the Safer At Home order ceases, according to the Los Angeles Times. Face coverings and masks can be factory-made or handmade from cotton, silk or linen materials.

For months now, many Los Angeles restaurants have found themselves at odds with customers who refuse to properly wear masks. In October, Silver Lake’s Burgers Never Say Die hired a security guard to deal with non-compliant customers, while Hugo’s Tacos in Atwater Village temporarily closed in June as anti-maskers hurled racist insults and threw objects and liquids at staff.

Another Southern California city took it a step further. In July, the City of Manhattan Beach implemented a mandatory face covering ordinance, where non-mask wearers receive $100 fine for the first offense, $200 for the second, and $500 for each incident after that.

In other news:

  • Majordomo reopened its patio for dining. The outdoor dining menu starts at $45+ per person with a choice of entree, priced by the item. To get an idea of the pricing structure, an entire grilled striped bass can feeds two to three people for $58, with dishes like bing, pasta, and beverages available for purchase separately.
  • CBS-2 reports that Antelope Valley cities including Lancaster and Palmdale have sent a joint letter to L.A. County public health director Dr. Barbara Ferrer. The letter asks county officials to allow indoor dining at 25 percent capacity before winter months kick in.
  • The Daily News reports the city of Burbank will offer loans and grants from $5,000 to $10,000 to businesses — including restaurants — impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Eligible restaurants must have two to 25 employees and be in operation on Jan. 2, 2020. If restaurants are still in business one year after receiving the loan, there is no expectation of repayment.
  • After temporarily closing in mid-March, and sustaining a damage during unrest in early June, Tar & Roses reopened for dinner in Santa Monica this week.
Outdoor seating area at Tar & Roses restaurant in Santa Monica, California
Tar & Roses
Courtesy of Peridot Consulting
  • On Wednesday, six to eight men reportedly vandalized Turkish restaurant Cafe Instanbul in Beverly Hills, breaking equipment and attacking staff. Staff accused the suspects of shouting pro-Armenia slogans. Beverly Hills Police are asking the public to help identify suspects, according to CBS-2.
  • Sommelier Rick Arline (Auburn) is ready to debut his new wine bar, called Fellow Traveler. The West Hollywood spot lands in the former Pacifique space starting this weekend. Expect wines by the glass as well as food, including a cheeseburger and curly fries deal for $15.
  • Chef Jason Fullilove is back in action, having taken over the kitchen at Neighbor in Venice. The restaurant has been closed since the start of the pandemic, but now returns with a menu infused with Fullilove’s flavors from his Barbara Jean days.
  • Great news for fans of the Griddle: the staple Hollywood breakfast spot is opening up for daytime service at Yamashiro above Hollywood. Expect the same massive pancakes, drinks, and more. from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., Tuesday through Sunday.