Restaurant gets OK to sell liquor, host DJ

DOWNEY - A Mexican seafood restaurant on Imperial Highway can now serve liquor and host a DJ after approval from the Planning Commission last week. Following the recommendation of city planners, commissioners OK'd La Perla del Mar's request for upgraded liquor and entertainment licenses. Out of respect for nearby homes, however, the restaurant is required to keep its doors closed at all times to reduce noise levels.

Customers are also prohibited from gathering in the rear parking lot after closing time.

The restaurant was previously allowed to sell beer and wine for on-site consumption only.

To prevent the restaurant from becoming a bar, more than half of the restaurant's gross sales must come from food, and alcohol sales are required to stop at 1 a.m., one hour before closing time. Restaurant owner Jesus Magana said he plans to hire a disc jockey to add to his entertainment lineup of dancing and karaoke.

The Downey Police Department initially objected to La Perla del Mar serving liquor after problems with a nearby nightclub, El Maguey, that also served liquor. El Maguey closed more than a year ago, however, and its liquor license was surrendered.

Police officials said they responded to La Perla del Mar seven times during the last 12 months for complaints that ranged from an assault with a deadly weapon to drinking in public and being loud in the parking lot.

********** Published: January 24, 2013 - Volume 11 - Issue 41