One consequence of the pandemic, a time when people could not gather inside, is that several Pacifica bars offered outdoor dining and music.
But A Grape in the Fog in Rockaway Beach will have to suspend outdoor amplified music due to a complaint. Owner Beth Lemke said she learned of the requirement in an email from the Pacifica Planning Department.
“We have suspended outdoor music,” she said. “My agreement was to have unamplified music.”
She hopes her outdoor dining space will be allowed to stay. City Council will vote on whether to make the outdoor dining that became a hallmark of the pandemic a permanent fixture. Businesses that offer outdoor dining now have a permit from the city to operate until December.
“We hope they will continue to support outdoor dining,” Lemke said.
Winters Tavern hasn’t been the subject of any complaints and there is no planning department directive to stop outdoor music from its parking lot.
C.J. Valenti, owner and operator of Winters Tavern, said the neighborhood has been gracious. Staff makes sure the volume of the outdoor music is dialed down. They don’t have rock bands out there, only a vocal public address system.
“The outdoor space has been wonderful. This is a very good thing for the community. We are the lucky ones to have a parking lot we could utilize,” he said. “We are very thankful for that. It’s been a good experience for us.”
Valenti says he’s enjoyed going to other restaurants in town that have outdoor dining, enjoying the beautiful places outdoors.
He worked with city staff, the North Coast County Fire Authority and the Pacifica Police Department before opening the outdoor music at Winters.
“Whatever we can do to make it permanent, it’s a no-brainer. It will be good for everyone,” Valenti said.
Longboard Margarita Bar has an outdoor space for dining and beverages, but not for music, said owner Kim Lerohl. Music is inside.
“A lot of people are sitting indoors. We have had some shows canceled. We are still doing small indoor concerts inside,” she said.