Bond Street Social last week (Baltimore Sun )
Bond Street Social has reversed a policy to restrict admission to those over 23 after 10 p.m., the new Fells Point lounge and restaurant said today.
Earlier: Can Bond Street Social restrict admission based on age? No, in short.
Bond Street Social, the new bar and restaurant in Fells Point, has been open now for a week, and seems to be pulling in big crowds.
It's a change of pace for the space, which its previous owners, DuClaw Brewing Company, had complained suffered from sluggish business.
Bond Street doubles as a restaurant and bar, and its owners have said they intend on catering to an upscale, young professional clientele.
To that end, admission after 10 p.m. is restricted to those over 23, the owners have said and the bar announces on its website. This sounded hinky to me, and in fact it is.
"Age discrimination of any kind is not permitted in Maryland," said Baltimore Liquor Board chairman Stephan Fogleman.
However, in order for the liquor board to do something about the restriction, someone under 23 must first be denied admission and then file a complaint with the board.
Other clubs in Baltimore have practiced similar door policies. Last year, Milan stipulated men would only be allowed into the club after 10:30 p.m. when accompanied by a woman. And the bar Wurlitzer's in Hunt Valley restricted admission to patrons under 25. It seems these venues have both called off the policy.
Bond Street Social opens today at 4 p.m.
Update: Bond Street Social has reversed its age restriction policy. Max Tucker, an owner, explains in an email the policy is commonplace in New York and Philadelphia, where several of the owners run Ladder 15 :
"After reading your article this morning in the Sun, we contacted our attorney to confirm that we are not allowed to restrict admission based on age. You are 100% correct, and starting now that policy will be removed effective immediately. We meant zero harm by having this policy in place and are happy to resolve this immediately."
Bond Street Social's website will be updated this evening.