‘Do or die time' for Artmosphere

by Walter Pierce

The popular restaurant/music venue has only a few days remaining to get its food sales up or face loss of its liquor license by the state.

A popular bar restaurant has only a few days remaining to get its food sales up or face loss of its liquor license by the state.

Artmosphere Bistro is putting out an appeal to patrons: Come eat or we're going down the tubes.

The popular Downtown venue, which has carved a nightlife niche by offering nightly live music and opportunities for indie touring bands as well as locals a stage and friendly audience, is in the crosshairs of the state Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control headed by Commissioner Troy Hebert.

Earlier this spring following an inspection of the restaurant's receipts and determining it was making less than 51 percent of its profits off food - Artmosphere had been making an overwhelming percent of its profit off alcohol sales because, frankly, who goes to hear live music and doesn't drink a few beers? - owner Beryl Kemp was summoned to Baton Rouge by Hebert and given an ultimatum: get the food sales up the 51 percent within three months or lose your license to sell alcohol. Such a license forfeiture would almost certainly strike the death knell for Artmosphere as we know it.

As a result, Kemp and staff have been heavily pushing food sales at the venue. As recently as a few days ago Artmosphere indicated in a Facebook post that they were hovering around 48 percent. Now they're making a final push, per this status update Wednesday afternoon:

Delicious food, a nice atmosphere and a good cause.

It is do or die time. REALLY need a big boost in food sales or we are not going to make it. Only BYOB from now til Mon.

My ideas, open to yours:

-Do lunch, bring the office.

-Let us cater a meal or event for you

-Buy gift certificates (fathers day is Sunday)

-Celebrate fathers day at Artmosphere's brunch on Sunday

-Have dinner and take a meal to go

-Pick up dinner for the family

-Tell everyone you know about EAT Fest

-BYOB and snack while you hang out

-Come early and have a cup of coffee and munchies

Artmosphere is located at the corner of Johnston and Convent streets across from Borden's Ice Cream parlor. The venue will host the second installment of its Eat Fest on Saturday from noon to midnight with live music wall-to-wall and the kitchen humming. If you value the vibrancy of Lafayette's live music scene, head over and eat something.