On Tuesday officials forced another Bay Area location of In-N-Out to shut down completely due to the company’s refusal to require staff to check customers’ vaccination status. Contra Costa County officials suspended the commercial food permit for the burger chain’s location at on 570 Contra Costa Boulevard in Pleasant Hill, KRON4 reported Tuesday afternoon. In the weeks leading up, the restaurant had already been fined four times to the tune of $1,750. Several other In-N-Outs in the area, including restaurants in Pinole and San Ramon, have also been either warned or fined about not being in compliance with the health order.
This is the second In-N-Out location to be temporarily closed for violating vaccination mandates; the only In-N-Out location in San Francisco was temporarily closed by the city’s Department of Public Health after learning staff were not checking diners’ vaccination cards. That location has since reopened with city approval for takeout and outdoor dining, both of which do not require staff to verify vaccination status — but on Monday, the SFDPH confirmed to Eater SF that it’s investigating a complaint that the restaurant is continue to allow some diners to eat inside, in violation of the city’s latest directive.
And while the company is getting support from conservative voices for taking a stand against vaccination mandates, which In-N-Out Chief Legal & Business Officer Arnie Wensinger described as “intrusive, improper, and offensive,” the burger chain seems headed towards an imminent confrontation with officials in Southern California. Los Angeles is set to enact its own vaccination requirement for indoor dining next week, opening up a second — and possibly even larger — battlefront for burger chain in the pandemic culture war. [KRON4]
Beyond Orange Chicken arrives in the Bay Area
Starting today, Beyond the Original Orange Chicken is officially available at Panda Express in the Bay Area, rolling out at eight locations in Northern California. If you want to know where you can try that sticky-sweet goodness for yourself, head here.
If you love Berkeley Bowl so much, why don’t you ... take your engagement photos there?
Both SFGATE and Berkeleyside profiled Joey Chiang and Melody Yu, a couple who recently took their engagement photos among the shining and expansive produce aisles of the famous Berkeley market. [SFGATE, Berkeleyside]
This natural wine pioneer was also, maybe, a cult leader
SFGATE spoke to journalist Jennings Brown who has a new podcast out. It tells the story of Fellowship of Friends, a Northern California group headed up by Robert Burton — who, on one hand, has helped facilitate the production of some great wines, but, on the other, sounds like he might fit the profile of a cult leader. Listen for yourself on Spotify. [SFGATE]
This historic North Beach restaurant has closed
According to the SF Chronicle, historic Italian restaurant Original U.S in North Beach has closed. Co-owner Alberto Cipollina says the closure is partially due to the pandemic (staffing has been a challenge, the restaurant couldn’t get a parklet, etc.) and also because at 77 he’s ready to retire. [SF Chronicle]