Alibi Drinkery reopens in spite of court order, faces 5-year liquor license suspension

Alibi Drinkery in Lakeville, Minnesota opened its doors to dine-in customers Thursday, the same day a Dakota County judge granted a temporary injunction forcing them to close for the duration of a ban on in-person dining that goes through January 10.

Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison announced Thursday the court had granted his office’s motion for a temporary injunction after Alibi Drinkery opened its doors to dine-in customers in mid-December. Ellison’s office sued on December 17 for violating a temporary ban on in-person dining under Gov. Tim Walz's executive order.

"Yet another court has recognized the severity of the COVID-19 pandemic and the firm legal foundation of the State’s legitimate interest in putting a stop to it," Attorney General Ellison said in a written statement. "I thank the thousands of Minnesota bars and restaurants that have done the right thing and met their responsibility to their communities by continuing to follow the law. A handful are choosing to ignore their responsibility: by so doing, they’re simply extending the pain the pandemic has already wrought upon all of us."

In a statement Thursday afternoon, Ellison said he is asking the Dakota County District Court to find Alibi Drinkery in contempt of court for violating the order. A hearing on the matter has been set for January 5 at 11 a.m.

Alibi risks losing its liquor license if it refuses to comply the injunction. In a release on Thursday, the Department of Public Safety said the restaurant now faces a five-year liquor license suspension.

In a different statement, Ellison’s office summarized the enforcement actions it has brought against additional establishments for violating the temporary ban:

Carlson Event Center in Winnebago

St. Patrick’s Tavern in New Prague

Pour House in Clark’s Grove

The Interchange in Albert Lea 

Cornerstone Cafe in Monticello 

Cork in Anoka

Neighbors on the Rum in Princeton

Boardwalk Bar and Grill in East Grand Forks

Plainview Wellness Center in Plainview

The Attorney General’s office also represents the Minnesota Department of Health in its Dec. 11, 2020, lawsuit against Haven’s Garden in Lynd, Minn., for continuing to operate on-premises dining and entertainment in violation of the order. MDH won a temporary restraining order against the establishment on Dec. 12 and a temporary injunction on Dec. 16, 2020.