Nouveau Tavern ownership submitted a statement and more information regarding Friday's shut down by the Chicago P.D. The restaurant and lounge will open at 5 p.m. today as they attempt to comply with the city.
Co-owner Marsette Magnum, reached by phone, feels he followed correct procedure, that the city acted "unreasonably," and believes that the shutdown and the timing during a Friday night rush was "orchestrated purposely to hurt my business and credibility."
Read the full statement below.
· On the evening of April 11 Nouveau Tavern was arbitrarily and unreasonably shut down by the Chicago Police Department due to an apparent misunderstanding about the details related to various license renewals.
· It is our firm belief that all proper and correct processes have been followed.
· On April 3 we were contacted about a formality on a routine change of officers issue. We were given 10 business days to resolve the issue, which gave us until April 17 to dot the 'I's and cross the 't's.
· We were told that posting our current proof of payment would suffice until the issue was finalized.
· We were not contacted at any time between April 3 and April 11 about any issues or concerns.
· We were very surprised by the abrupt shut down without any notice six days prior to the date of April 17. Our legal counsel was addressing the issues with this date in mind.
· We will have more information later this week.
[UPDATE: In a post to the Nouveau Tavern Facebook page, restaurant ownership alleges racial profiling by the city. Read that below.]
"A simple form was completed Monday Morning.... And Nouveau Tavern was re-opened. It is our firm belief that Nouveau Tavern is being targeted for racial reasons. The tactics used were harsh and unnecessary. No other business would have been treated this way.
African Americans aren't welcomed in River North....Chicago is one of the most racially divided cities in America. Everyone that lives in Chicago.... Knows it's two Chicago's! We have a right to be in River North! We've built a world class establishment. We have a great cuisine with great service. Race shouldn't be an issue... But unfortunately in Chicago, it is.
Please understand that this is bigger than just a license. This is genocide.... The extermination of an African American Business in River North. Nouveau Tavern will rise to challenge and continue to strive for excellence in Chicago. The proper and correct processes have been followed for all the City of Chicago licenses.
We truly appreciate all the support. Thank you."