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Kitchen compromise clears way for Evanston bar

world-of-beer

It looks like World of Beer will be coming to Evanston, and without precipitating a change in the city's long-time ban on bars that don't serve food.

It looks like World of Beer will be coming to Evanston, and without precipitating a change in the city's long-time ban on bars that don't serve food.

In a memo to aldermen prepared for tonight's City Council meeting, city staff report that Ted Mavrakis, who wants to bring the World of Beer franchise to the Fountain Square Building he owns downtown, has agreed to install a kitchen in the planned bar space.

The initial proposal for the franchise, which features a wide selection of craft beers, had sparked controversy because the franchise model calls for letting patrons call out and have food delivered from other restaurants nearby, but not having a kitchen in the World of Beer itself.

That led aldermen to say they didn't think it was appropriate to grant a license for the establishment under the city's existing liquor code, and to ask Mayor Elizabeth Tisdahl, the city's liquor commissioner, to consider adding a new tavern license class to the ordinance that would not require an establishment to have a kitchen.

But Tisdahl, and Alderman Judy Fiske, 1st Ward, voiced doubts at a liquor control board meeting last week about the risks of permitting liquor service where food wasn't served.

Tisdahl said she'd heard that World of Beer had considered including a kitchen in one of its franchise locations elsewhere, and Mavrakis said he'd check into whether he could get approval for that.

The City Council is scheduled to vote on whether to approve the license for the building at 1601 Sherman Ave. this evening.

Update 11:10 a.m. 4/11/12: The aldermen voted unanimously Tuesday night to approve the World of Beer liquor license.

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