Housing Complex

Long Time Coming: Big Bear Cafe Gets its License

(Darrow Montgomery)

On November 3, after months of negotiation with neighbors and being denied by the local ANC, the Big Bear Cafe–represented in its ABRA board hearing by the liquor licensing pro Andrew Kline–was granted its license. Big Bear didn't get everything it wanted: The Board, while dismissing most of the protestants' concerns about trash, noise, and zoning, confined the Cafe's hours to midnight on weekends and 11:00 p.m. on weekdays, with outdoor music to cease at 9:00 p.m.

Don't expect the beer to start flowing immediately, though. Owner Stu Davenport said the speedy decision–which took only a third of the Board's 90-day window–took him by surprise, and he has no immediate plans to start serving alcohol, except for a December 5th art market where spiked cider will be in the offing.

  • Rick Mangus


  • nearby

    Glad the ABRA put some sensible limits on when they can serve, after all it is in a residential neighborhood.

  • Sally

    The appropriate coda to the tenure of the buffoon The Commish.

  • Daniel

    It's about time. Living on the Unit Block of R ST NW, Big Bear Cafe has become a staple and an anchor to the neighborhood. Having the ability to walk down the street and have a light dinner will be a distinct advantage. Having worked in the industry, I know that a liquor license is essential for a business to make a profit if they are open evening hours. This was the right decision and it was conducted with complete respect for the neighbors. Stu Davenport, the owner, has always wanted to work with the community and he is proving it in how he is approaching the receipt of the license. No big alcohol parties here, rather a quiet acceptance and careful prep prior to even bringing in any alcohol.

  • Rick Mangus

    You still need to get rid of the ANCs'!

  • DCCommish

    @Sally-- Well to be honest I feel like there was a huge injustice that has occurred in this community. There have been outrageous rants and raves, racist comments, lies, misinformation, etc. It's a complete let down of what we should be expecting from this community. Fair and equitable hasn't seen any light in this situation no matter what side or what you felt about the application. I'm frankly glad BBC got its liquor license and if you weren’t such an ass, you would have realized that in the first place instead. If you had half the mind you think you have, you would know that ABRA put into effect almost actually what I tried to get Stu to compromise on in the first place. Ask Stu he'll tell you! So stop your banter and actually do something for this community instead of trying to tear it apart! It’s making Bloomingdale a very divided community.

  • jizabel

    Hide your wives, Hide your kids.

  • DCCommish

    Well it seems BBC drama still isn't over. Community group from 5C03 has submitted a resloution to object to the change in zoning for Big Bear Cafe from R-4 to C2A at last night's meeting. It was read and will be voted on by the commssion at the Dec meeting! The drama continues!

  • rew

    barrrie, why have you such a personal vendetta against big bear cafe?
    its so frustrating for those of us in bloomingdale to have to listen to you and be affected by your decisions. you are what's wrong with local politics.