City Paper Widget

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Black Cat Liquor License Modification Moves Forward

The liquor licensing affairs committee of Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 1B/U Street tentatively approved the request of the Black Cat (1811 18th Street NW) for a substantial change to its liquor license. The changes will include moving dressing rooms from the first to the third floors and building a 1500-foot enclosed bar on the third floor. The proposed bar will have a capacity of 149 people.

(Luis Gomez Photos, used by permission)
The decision occurred last night (August 21) at the committee's regular monthly meeting at the Thurgood Marshall Center (1816 12th Street).

The approval is contingent on the endorsement of ANC 1B Commissioner Zahra Jilani. She is the Commissioner for district 12, in which the Black Cat is located. She was unable to attend the meeting, but sent someone to represent her. The representative said Zilani had some noise abatement concerns.

Assuming Jilani endorses the committee's vote, the committee's approval will probably be the subject of discussion and vote at the next meeting of the full ANC on Thursday, September 5. The meeting will start at 7pm at the Reeves Center (14th and U Streets).

An ANC approval is strictly advisory. The final decision lies with DC's Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Board.

Dante Ferrando, owner/operator of the Black Cat, told the committee that the club would soon celebrate its twentieth anniversary. There have been no major changes for twelve years.

"We need to make some improvements," he said. Ferrando said that the club will remain flexible on the shape of the final design, pending negotiation with various DC authorities and other parties.

Ferrando also said the club has a roof deck license, but he is not using the license now and is not intending to turn the third-floor space into a roof deck.

The approval was unanimous. One committee member abstained, pleading conflict of interest.

The Black Cat's hearing before the ABC Board on its liquor license modification request will take place at 10am on September 30, on the fourth floor of the Reeves Center. See a copy of the announcement here.

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