A restaurant and grocery store on Long Island had their liquor licenses suspended this week for allegedly failing to follow New York State mandates intended to curb the spread of coronavirus, authorities said.
State Liquor Authority (SLA) suspended the licenses of Blu Mar, a restaurant in Southampton, and Sazon Ramirez II, a store in Roosevelt.
“We’re still in the middle of a global pandemic, and the task force will continue taking action against the small number of establishments who willfully violate the coronavirus-related regulations,” SLA Chair Vincent Bradley said.
The state has suspended the liquor licenses of 168 businesses due to similar violations since the pandemic began five months ago. The latest LI suspensions comes after the SLA recently suspended the liquor licenses of Dox, a restaurant in Island Park, Secrets Gentlemen’s Club, a Deer Park strip club, and 75 Main, also in Southampton.
At Blu Mar, investigators with the state’s multi-agency task force observed a line of patrons waiting to enter the establishment while ignoring social distancing and 11 patrons standing and drinking on the patio at 6 p.m. Aug 22, authorities said. When investigators returned an hour later, they found several patrons standing around the bar, the SLA said. Patrons and staff were observed throughout the night without facial coverings, officials added.
“That same evening, an 18-year-old underage agent was able to purchase alcohol on two separate occasions without being asked for identification,” SLA said.
State officials added that the business is a repeat offender, with the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department previously finding the restaurant operating as a nightclub on Aug. 16 with a DJ, patrons dancing, not wearing facial coverings, ignoring social distancing, and an exotic entertainer dancing on top of the bar, in violation of the establishment’s license, which does not permit adult entertainment.
At Sazon Ramirez II on Nassau Road, investigators found the grocery store — which is not permitted to serve alcohol for on-premises consumption at all — was operating as a nightclub, with 14 patrons drinking beer inside the premises and six employees and the owner not wearing facial coverings, officials said.
In the basement, investigators discovered 10 patrons drinking alcohol in a concealed room with a large screen TV, juke box, and electronic gambling devices, authorities added. The store was issued nine criminal court summonses, 20 building code violations, and six fire and life safety violations.
For more coronavirus coverage, visit longislandpress.com/coronavirus