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San Gennaro Cafe Cited for Alcohol Violations, Closes After 26 Years

Italian restaurant in Brentwood Village is closed after receiving two complaints in 2012 for serving alcohol without a license, according to the Department of Alcohol Beverage Control.

Sen Gennaro Cafe, located at 140 South Barrington Place in Brentwood Village, was cited by the state on Jan. 25 for its second violation of selling alcohol without a license and an eviction notice dated Jan. 30 is posted on its front door.

A note posted next to the eviction notice thanks the community for 26 great years in Brentwood. The Italian-style restaurant located in Culver City reportedly also closed years ago, according to Yelp.

John Carr, spokesman for the California Department of Alcohol Beverage Control, told Patch Wednesday Sen Gennaro's license to serve alcohol was revoked on Feb. 12, 2012 for not paying the annual fee renewal. It was issued Dec. 16, 1987.

"Once a location doesn’t have a license, we take any disciplinary action against someone [serving] without a license," he said, noting they forward the misdemeanor complaints to the district attorney's office.

"We received complaints in the community about this location," he said.

The department visited Sen Gennaro Cafe in October 2012 and, after receiving more complaints in December, returned Jan. 25, both times citing owner Linda Handal for selling alcohol without a license.

Handal and her husband Jay managed the restaurant. Jay Handal is listed as chairman of the West Los Angeles Neighborhood Council.

Calls and emails made in attempts to contact the owners were not returned. The phone numbers in Brentwood and Culver City are disconnected.

The lights were off at the Brentwood storefront Wednesday night. Two returning patrons stopped short surprised to see the restaurant closed, saying they had been coming for years. One person said it was one of the last reasonably-priced places get to a good Italian meal.

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Guy Gottlieb February 14, 2013 at 06:20 PM
he was serving alcohol with a revoked license, and they were not paying minimum wage, jay handel is the biggest Gonnif (Thief in yiddish) around!
Soozie Eastman February 16, 2013 at 01:34 AM
San Gennaro had great food. There is no doubt about it. Having a restaurant a person could walk to that was reasonably priced will be missed. However, they were cons. They would tout a $60 bottle of wine that they would sell for $15 and if you just googled it, it was really $8 at Wally's. You would get a 50% off coupon only to present it at the end of the meal and be told it had expired when it arrived two days before and had no expiration date. Jay and Linda unfortunately ascribe to the bait and switch method of restaurant ownership and not the true east coast, family and customers mean everything, restaurant pledge. I haven't been there in years after they yelled at me for saying I didn't think it was fair I couldn't use my coupon. Not sad to see them go. Now, let's get something else in there where the owners value their customers. Jay and Linda, go back to the east coast, where the weather is as cold as your business practices.
Henry February 23, 2013 at 06:08 PM
Jay, you're a Great Community Leader with or without San Gennaro. Best on your next move - Henry Hall, VP Optimist Club of Brentwood
Erle March 02, 2013 at 03:18 PM
As a resident of Brentwood for 30 years, San Gennaro was the first place that I felt welcomed to bring my children as toddlers. It was warm and family oriented. It's disappointing to learn that even with Jay's leadership experience in local government, he felt he could act above the law.
lee jones May 13, 2013 at 04:59 AM
agreed! I worked there as a waiter.. They paid us $20 a night per shift, and gave a 30% discount for food. Totally unethical and illegal business practices. Couldn't have happened to better people. They deserve this!

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