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Cafe Flore Threatens Closure, Makes Demands

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In a somewhat odd turn of Castro events, SFist has uncovered a movement to save Cafe Flore. You didn't know that the often-packed, popular Market Street destination Cafe Flore was in trouble? Yeah, us neither.

Apparently, it's not so much that Cafe Flore is in danger of closing as the restaurant is threatening to go on strike. According to, the demands of Cafe Flore are threefold: the option to serve food 24 hours a day, the option to have a DJ and the right to serve alcohol until 2am. Cafe Flore's reasons for the requests mostly make sense, and are as follows:

* Cafe Flore's owner JD Petras, is a longtime member of the Castro community who wants to preserve the quaint and historic character of Cafe Flore. He has turned down many offers for more lucrative uses of the site. In order to preserve Cafe Flore in the current economic climate of the Castro, he needs to have the same operating privileges as other neighborhood restaurants that have alcohol and entertainment.

* Other Castro restaurants such as LIME on Market Street, and Harvey's at 18th and Castro serve alcohol and have entertainment until 2 am. Only having alcohol and non-amplified entertainment until 11 pm during the week, and midnight on weekends hurts Cafe Flore's ability to host the community fundraisers for which we are so well known.

While the fundraising reasoning is a bit silly—"give us a DJ or we won't be able to help the homeless!"—it seems that Cafe Flore's demands are merely a case of keeping up with the competition, especially if rumors of financial difficulties are true. Besides, if neighboring establishments have been granted special privileges and assuming there aren't any hidden elements at play here, the obvious answer would suggest that Cafe Flore should receive the same privileges. (Whether or not a scare tactic is the right way to get those privileges is another matter)

On another note, is this the first time an entire restaurant has threatened to go on strike? Who is John Galt?
· Save Cafe Flore [Official Site]
· Cafe Flore Closing? [SFist]

[Photo courtesy]

*UPDATE 5:30PM—We should also add that we particularly liked this line defending the proposals: "Cafe Flore patrons are adult and do not urinate on neighbors door steps."