July 27, 2020 By Allie Griffin
Two Jackson Heights restaurants and an Ozone Park eatery have had their liquor licenses suspended for failing to meet coronavirus prevention requirements.
The State Liquor Authority (SLA) suspended the licenses of Guaro’s Tapas Bar Lounge, at 86-01 Northern Blvd. in Jackson Heights; Kandela, at 150-03 Cross Bay Boulevard in Ozone Park; and La Pollera Colorada II, at 82-13 Northern Boulevard in Jackson Heights last week.
Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the suspensions on Friday after revealing that two Astoria bars and a Maspeth pizzeria also had their liquor licenses temporarily yanked earlier in the week.
Cuomo recently enacted a “three-strikes” rule in which the SLA will suspend the liquor license of any bar or restaurant that violates social distancing rules and mask requirements three times.
SLA investigators and NYPD officers witnessed each of the three Queens establishments violating the rules on multiple occasions.
The authority suspended Guaro’s Tapas Bar Lounge on July 24 and Kandela on July 23 after observing patrons at both failing to social distance and wear face masks.
Large groups congregated at each eatery well past the city’s 11 p.m. curfew for outdoor dining and created a “nightclub-like” atmosphere with music blaring and crowds dancing, according to the SLA.
Investigators saw a lack of mask wearing among closely packed patrons at each eatery on multiple occasions.
The state agency also yanked the liquor license from La Pollera Colorada II for the time being, on July 22.
The restaurant’s noncompliance dates back to May, when NYPD officers found patrons drinking inside the restaurant who refused to leave when asked.
SLA investigators also witnessed servers working without any face covering near the end of June and again on July 18, they saw crowds congregating without masks and disregarding social distancing rules.