NYU Reacts: Dahlia’s Gets Shut Down

Anne Cruz
Dahlias' liquor license was revoked by the New York State Liquor Authority after law enforcement found over 40 underage people in the establishment.

New York City college students mourned this past weekend as Dahlia’s, a mainstay in the East Village bar scene, had its liquor license revoked by the New York State Liquor Authority this past weekend. During a raid on Jan. 30, law enforcement found over 40 underage patrons at the Mexican restaurant — some as young as 15. The mexican eatery will still be able to serve food, but six employees were arrested and the SLA charged Dahlia’s with 55 violations. Members of the NYU community shared their thoughts on the popular neighborhood bar’s demise.

“Honestly I’m surprised they weren’t shut down sooner. The restaurant is right next to the police department so it really wasn’t smart for them to have such a lax ID policy. I only went there twice because it’s one thing to see underage college students sipping on overpriced mojitos but most of the people there looked like high school freshmen. It was really disturbing.”

—Mairead McConnell, Gallatin freshman

“I think that it’s sad but like I guess it had to be done if people didn’t show up making a scene when they left then maybe it would’ve stayed under the radar for longer. The first couple weeks everyone went and drank there. It was a cool spot before the lines went out the door and were two hours long. But it wasn’t my number one spot.”

—Thomas Fortune, CAS freshman

“I feel like enforcing the law is a police officer’s job. I’m surprised they got away with it for this long, and I would do the same if I owned a bar in the East Village — I would just be better at it.”

—Nathan Kastle, Tisch sophomore

“The establishment very flagrantly broke the law for years, serving liquor to minors as young as 13. I’m not condoning that, but I think the entire case is just another testimony to how backwards and ineffective America’s regulation of alcohol is. Kids are always going to have a propensity to drink and be frivolous, and the markets will always be there to serve them.”

—David Riccione, LS sophomore

“Honestly, I was disappointed because I realized that it would probably have an effect on other local places that don’t card too hard, and shocked that the staff was arrested. I completely understand taking away their license but arresting staff seems a bit excessive and perhaps unfair if workers were just listening to what their bosses were telling them.”

—Robert Simmons Perez, CAS sophomore

“I was definitely sad to hear about Dahlia’s, but when I read the news article with my roommate we couldn’t help but laugh because we were not surprised in the slightest. I feel badly for the employees who were arrested because there are countless other bars and restaurants who serve minors nightly, but in all honesty Dahlia’s was infamously known by NYU freshmen and local high-schoolers for not [asking for ID], so I figured it was only some time until they got caught.”

—Taber Brown, LS sophomore

“I think it’s better for the community that they were shut down and I know a lot of people are upset but it’s not that shocking. It’s amazing how many people took advantage of Dahlia’s policies and didn’t get in trouble which seems pretty unfair.”

—Ally Schmus, Steinhardt freshman

Email Anne Cruz at [email protected]

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