Despite objections from a few neighbors, Evanston aldermen this week approved a liquor license and a sidewalk cafe for DMK Burgers & Fish at 815 Noyes St.
The liquor license was revised to limit sales to beer and wine, from all alcoholic beverages, but Alderman Judy Fiske withdrew her proposal to tighten rules about serving food with liquor after Corporation Counsel Grant Farrar said he planned to revisit that issue soon as part of a broader revision of the liquor code for restaurants.
Alderman Judy Fiske, 1st Ward.
Fiske, whose ward includes the restaurant site, and some neighbors, don’t like the current city liquor code language, which says, “Alcoholic liquor may be sold in restaurants … only during the period when their patrons are offered a complete meal.”
Fiske argued for language limiting liquor sales only to “patrons who are actually served a complete meal.”
But Kornick said that would pose a variety of problems for restaurant owners.
If a restaurant was busy, and patrons waited for a table at the bar, were served a drink, and then decided the wait for a table was too long and left, Kornick asked, would the restaurant owner have broken the law by serving them?
And what does “a full meal” mean, he asked, in an era when many restaurants specialize in “small plates” dishes?
Alderman Ann Rainey, 8th Ward, suggested the liquor code should only require that liquor sales be restricted to hours when the restaurant has meals available.
A diagram of the planned sidewalk cafe at DMK.
The planned sidewalk cafe at DMK is to have two 24 by 30 inch tables and four chairs. Under the city’s liquor code, carry-out restaurants like DMK can’t serve liquor at their sidewalk cafes.