Why It's Not OK to Drink Too Much and Talk Too Loudly at This L.A. Bar

The rules level the playing field so everything has a good evening

Find out the rules of the bar at Varnish.

These are the rules printed on a sign that hangs on the wall outside the Varnish, the bar I opened in 2009 at the back of Cole’s in downtown L.A.:

“Welcome, please wait to be seated. Our process takes time; thank you for your patience. We are first come, first served and we don't take reservations. We cannot accommodate parties larger than six people. No vulgar language or loud behavior please. Disrespectful attitudes towards other patrons or our staff will not be tolerated. Cocktail attire is admired, not required.”

Basic service details aside, the Varnish’s rules regarding things like foul language and disrespectful behavior exist because we don't feel that being under the influence of alcohol means relinquishing one’s sense of decorum.

Bar rules, contrary to those who imagine they are just us being didactic and uptight, are there to ensure that a good time is had by all.

Related

Find out more of the essential bar rules by continuing the story on the LA Times