10 Maple Grove Restaurants Fail Alcohol Compliance Checks
“It’s a struggle everyday.”
That’s what one business owner told the Maple Grove City Council this week in speaking about the current state of the restaurant industry.
Ten restaurants were called before the Maple Grove City Council after failing alcohol compliance checks. They were Benihana, El Rodeo Mexican Restaurant, Holiday Inn Maple Grove, Hy-Vee Market Grille Express, Lookout Supper Club, Olive Garden, OMNI Brewing Company, P.F. Changs China Bistro, Riviera Maya Cantina and Rush Creek Golf Club.
A cross section of restaurants and bars failed to ask for ID and sold alcohol to a minor in a Maple Grove police sting operation. When called before council, several managers and business owners accepted responsibility, but also cited problems connected to the pandemic as reasons why they slipped up on a compliance check. At the top of the list: new staff or lack of seasoned staff that make up the majority of the workforce.
“I’m absolutely not making an excuse for what happened, but 80 percent of my staff members have less than a year of experience on the floor,” explained Mike Kinnan, owner of The Lookout. “We are in a business environment that has changed immensely. There’s a reason you have 10 people here that have failed.”
Managers offered solutions that are being implemented that include more education, scanners and a signed form to remind staff to check ID. The fine and the length of time a liquor license may be suspended varies, depending on if the restaurant has had a violation before.