The Department of Health has given us the official lowdown on Socialista’s closure:
Socialista was closed on Sunday, December 21 following an inspection that found several critical violations, including a sewage backup in the establishment’s kitchen while servers were preparing food, a non-functioning hand washing sink in a food preparation area, and mice droppings in two areas, including a bar. The establishment was also found without a compartment sink in the bar area to sanitize glassware. On December 13, 2008, Socialista was cited for allowing patrons to smoke, providing ashtrays, and not posting “No Smoking” signs or a no smoking policy, as required by the Smoke Free Air Act. Socialista was again found in violation of the Smoke Free Air Act on December 21.
Interestingly, that December 13 inspection came just a couple of weeks after the Post’s “smoking speakeasies” exposé. So were they connected?
Socialista wasn’t named in the article, but according the DOH’s Website, both the Beatrice Inn and Goldbar, which were named in the article, also received smoking citations on December 13. So we’re guessing yes, there’s a connection. And now the quote we gave the Post’s reporter seems pretty ironic: “The exclusive spots do tend to let you smoke because it's an indication that anything goes and that the powers-that-be aren't going to snuff out a good time.”