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Chop and Eleven close for good


This news story was published on September 2, 2015.
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Chop and Eleven in downtown Mason City

Chop and Eleven in downtown Mason City

MASON CITY – The downtown Mason City establishment Chop Restaurant and Eleven Bar has closed permanently, NIT has learned.

Owner George Barlas confirmed the closing this afternoon.

“I did close Chop and Eleven, Mr. Barlas said. “Business was down for both sides ever since denial of liquor license by the city.”

City officials blamed a host of issues in the downtown area on Eleven Bar, a popular hot spot up through this weekend. The city council unanimously approved the denial of a liquor license to the business. Many people thought after this widely-publicized move that the restaurant and bar were closed.

“I couldn’t deal with the financial and personal pressure from the city denial,” Mr. Barlas explained.

An appeal to state officials was in the works, but there was no immediate word on progress there.

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53 Responses to Chop and Eleven close for good

  1. Avatar

    Kym Kantaris Sutton Reply Report comment

    September 5, 2015 at 10:24 am

    My dream was to move back to Mason City and open a small ” Athenian ” ! The hate I see here just amaze’s me ! I need to think this over

    • Avatar

      LVS Reply Report comment

      September 5, 2015 at 12:02 pm

      @Kim-There have always been haters and probably always will be. There are also a lot of good people here. We have a problem that needs to be corrected and that is the people who think they control the town. We would welcome a clean, decent place where we could take our family. Unfortunately, the Chop lost control.

      • Avatar

        anonymous Reply Report comment

        September 5, 2015 at 4:37 pm

        Welcome back LVS. I was worried that you were having health issues or had been ill. I hope that wasn’t the case for your absence.

        • Avatar

          LVS Reply Report comment

          September 5, 2015 at 5:54 pm

          Thank you, I am still not back to full time but I am improving. I think you may be surprised at some of my new comments. I have changed my opinion on several matters.

          • Avatar

            bodacious

            September 6, 2015 at 9:09 am

            I am also happy to hear you are ok. Hope that whatever was wrong has been rectified and I am looking forward to seeing the new LVS.

  2. Avatar

    Joseph Mirowski Reply Report comment

    September 4, 2015 at 8:27 am

    Your hatred is unbelievable, your facts are not the complete truth and have nothing to do with this issue.

  3. Avatar

    Chas Reply Report comment

    September 3, 2015 at 9:08 am

    Sorry to hear this. George, his family and the team at Chop/Eleven were always very good to me during the 4 years I lived in Mason City. Personally, I thought their food was the best in town, but even if you disagree with that judgement, you should be disgusted with the spectacle of a local business owner, doing his best to compete with fast food joints and national chain restaurants, being hounded out of business and probably out of town over what happens in the street in front of his establishment. How is that worse than/different from Lorados? And if that’s now the standard, WalMart should be next to go. If the City Council won’t stand and fight FOR the local guy, it deserves to sink…

    • Avatar

      Chas Reply Report comment

      September 3, 2015 at 9:10 am

      (2) …into franchise and strip mall hell.

      • Avatar

        my real name Reply Report comment

        September 3, 2015 at 1:17 pm

        I would love to see walmart get shut down.

    • Avatar

      bodacious Reply Report comment

      September 3, 2015 at 4:59 pm

      Good comments Chas. I agree that a city council should do everything possible to help the local guy. It isn’t only the fast food restaurants that are clogging up the area but the family restaurants, big box retailers, and now, coffee shops, that drive the locals out of business. The ones making the money from these stores aren’t typically town residents. You may save a buck or two by buying from them, but you also move the money to a corporate town.

      • Avatar

        Chas Reply Report comment

        September 3, 2015 at 8:35 pm

        bodacious – agreed. Whether I’m buying a restaurant meal or a T-shirt, I always prefer local merchants to national chains and do what I can to support them, even if it costs a few dollars more. It’s sad to see those in charge not practicing what they preach about growing the local economy. For reasons that I do not understand and damn the costs, city leaders decided to make an example of Chop/Eleven.

    • Avatar

      Anonymous Reply Report comment

      September 4, 2015 at 7:36 am

      “possibly run out of own”. LOL That’s a HUGE laugh. They have been in business in this town for almost 50 yrs.s. They survived Daddy stealing cigs and hiding them under the stage and in the river back in the 70’s. Survived another lawsuit in the 80’s. One son beat a rape case. They’ve been serving minors since they began business in the 70’s. They have always served people beyond the limit. (they like the money doncha know….) They had a son get away with murdering his own Father! They will survive. They’ll open up again somewhere else in town on Myrna’s money and name. She’s always dug them all out of the holes they…

      • Avatar

        Anonymous Reply Report comment

        September 4, 2015 at 7:39 am

        cont. holes they get themselves in.

      • Avatar

        Chas Reply Report comment

        September 4, 2015 at 5:42 pm

        Anonymous – I’m not sure why or how history from decades ago is relevant here, but you obviously have more background than I do. Assuming the family has the resources you claim they do, why would they invest MORE money in a city that acted against them? Would YOU? I wouldn’t. They’ll invest elsewhere, in a more welcoming environment. That’s what I meant about being hounded out of town. Could George have run Chop/Eleven differently or better? Sure. Could cooler heads have prevailed on both sides of the issue? Absolutely. But that doesn’t change the outcome: MC lost a business and the family’s future investments are likely to be anywhere but MC.

      • Avatar

        Mason Citian Reply Report comment

        September 11, 2015 at 8:37 pm

        In regards to the rape case: no, Tommy did not “beat” that one. It went all the way to the Iowa State Supreme Court, and the court ruled in favor of the rape victim. She was awarded a 6 figure amount but never received a dime, because they hid assets. The money award was never the point, anyway. They unleashed the most brutal character attack on her, harassed her, threatened her, lied on the stand; but her point was to not back down from these people who have always wiggled their way out of situations, because they are big fish in a small pond. Maybe, just maybe, they will at some point learn that they are not above the rules that apply to all the rest of us.

  4. Avatar

    Insider White Game Reply Report comment

    September 3, 2015 at 7:34 am

    Yet conveniently Lorados is allowed to stand.

    • Avatar

      Anonymous Reply Report comment

      September 3, 2015 at 9:43 am

      Who owns Lorados? Does anyone know. That might tell a lot in this town.

  5. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    September 2, 2015 at 10:46 pm

    Ironically the very same people on this very same topic several weeks ago were against chop and now they’re devil’s advocate for the other side

  6. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    September 2, 2015 at 10:44 pm

    Concerned

  7. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    September 2, 2015 at 8:06 pm

    great now the hood rats will be ruining another bar, first alley kats now eleven. maybe the police should do somthing about these imports ruining our town, if the judges would quit letting them out of jail our streets would be safe to walk at night again

    • Matt Marquardt

      Matt Marquardt Reply Report comment

      September 2, 2015 at 10:04 pm

      I blame Beje Clark. Once the crooks are brought here from all over the place, they get to live in Beje and cook your fast food. Then when they get out of Beje, they keep their McCrap job and rent a slum. Soon, their other crime partners move in with them. Then, they perpetrate crime all over town until they are arrested and sent back to Beje to start the process over again.

      • Avatar

        Anonymous Reply Report comment

        September 3, 2015 at 2:48 pm

        Who was responsible for that decision to locate here? I don’t remember anyone asking for citizen input.

      • Avatar

        bodacious Reply Report comment

        September 3, 2015 at 4:16 pm

        You can speculate on whoever is to blame, but nobody “gets” to live at Beje. It is a correctional residential facility where offenders are placed as a condition of their probation or parole. It also houses those who are transitioning from another DOC back into society. You could ask any of the residents there if they choose to stay and 90% would say no. And not all are McD workers. Some do have jobs that help them transition back into society. Our system is supposed to be a correctional system, i.e., one where correct behavior is learned so that the offender can become a productive member of society.

        • Matt Marquardt

          Matt Marquardt Reply Report comment

          September 3, 2015 at 7:37 pm

          Yes but you are ignoring my points; I’m too busy to spell this all out in excruciating detail. Beje is a much better lifestyle for these crooks than a jail cell, which most of them deserve. Agree with that? Second, yes I generalized on this jobs; not all of them “work at McDonald’s” but they sure ain;t working as school superintendents, either. They are getting the mc-crappiest of jobs and holding them just long enough to get done at Beje until the streets offer better opportunities.

          • Avatar

            Savage

            September 3, 2015 at 10:04 pm

            I agree with both points Matt. That being said do we agree the patrons of Eleven tend to be the problem? I need to maintain the sidewalk in front of my house. The same should be said for a business owner. If the fights are across the street in the parking lot, that should be the problem of the police. When Tra’ was the bar manager how many problems did they have?

          • Avatar

            Anonymous

            September 4, 2015 at 7:43 am

            Beje doesn’t have control over who gets sent there . The crooks low lifes & courts do. .smh.

          • Avatar

            bodacious

            September 4, 2015 at 1:11 pm

            I am not ignoring your points but you seem to be ignoring mine. Beje serves a purpose in our justice system. Not every law breaker is a hardened criminal. Our prisons and jails are overcrowded now. Beje is a place for those who have served time in either jail or prison and it is a transition place for moving back into society. Would you rather have them come straight from jail or prison with no job and no prospects or would you rather that they at least have a chance to make a better life? Or, would you rather just shoot all law breakers?

          • Matt Marquardt

            Matt Marquardt

            September 4, 2015 at 3:44 pm

            I don’t like guns, personally, so no, I wouldn’t “shoot” anyone; your question is idiotic and leading. No matter what “purpose” Beje serves, its bad for Mason City. It brings in too much trash to town. As for the overcrowded jails, stop imprisoning the petty crooks. Put them in orange jumpsuits that say in large black type on the back what crime they committed and make them clean toilets, sweep streets, pick up garbage in the park during Friday Night Live. Humiliate them instead of putting them in jail. That would turn the corner real quick on the crime problem.

          • Avatar

            bodacious

            September 4, 2015 at 6:09 pm

            Now you are calling people “idiotic” who disagree with you? Wow, it may be your site but you are certainly not one who knows how to win friends and influence people. As for shaming people who commit crimes, that is what many countries try to do. And it might work for some, but it is inhumane to do so. A jail sentence, a fine, probation, execution are all ways our system works. Shaming isn’t part of it and there is a reason for it. Our constitution says cruel and unusual punishment is not practiced in our country. Ever read The Scarlet Letter?

      • Avatar

        Anonymous Reply Report comment

        September 3, 2015 at 4:18 pm

        agreed. dont forget niacc. bring the inner city kids here to play ball then when they flunk out of school they get on hud and food stamps annd set up shop selling drugs destroying our community,.

  8. Avatar

    Katie Reply Report comment

    September 2, 2015 at 7:53 pm

    This is how a city deals with establishments that have nude dancers, close the doors at 2 am, but continue to serve people locked inside, serve minors, or dally in other illegal activities behind the bar. It shouldn’t be how a legitimate establishment that has tried to avoid problems from the get go is treated. There was a dress code, the problems in the area have continued, and it will not end the problem. It’s the patrons, not the establishment, in this case.

  9. Avatar

    Buzz Crumcutter Reply Report comment

    September 2, 2015 at 6:05 pm

    Since the city (essentially) shut down these businesses, it looks like the PD will be able to spend some quality time on the north end of town cleaning that up then.

    I wonder if Mr. Barlas will withdraw his appeal to the sate officials too?

  10. Avatar

    bodacious Reply Report comment

    September 2, 2015 at 4:36 pm

    This is very unfortunate. And I agree with Mr. Mirowski, Mr. Savas, and Mr. Children. And Savage and Our Leaders…. are unfortunately unable to understand that the move by the council to do this is just a first step. Next time it might be another business that is deemed ‘unsuitable’ for Mason City and for reasons that might not be as clear as was their reasoning behind forcing Chop and Eleven out.

    • Avatar

      Anonymous Reply Report comment

      September 2, 2015 at 7:42 pm

      @bodacious-I believe the underlying reason is because it was detracting from what they want to do in the downtown area. All they will do is move these thugs to another location. Wouldn’t it be a riot if it was the Park Inn next. The real answer is go after the thugs and jail them and mean it. Show them it wont be tolerated and they will move on.

  11. Avatar

    peter children Reply Report comment

    September 2, 2015 at 4:13 pm

    This is a travesty;

  12. Avatar

    Joseph Mirowski Reply Report comment

    September 2, 2015 at 3:46 pm

    What is that fine line?

    • Avatar

      Savage Reply Report comment

      September 2, 2015 at 7:40 pm

      Just like everything, a priest should know that.

  13. Avatar

    Joseph Mirowski Reply Report comment

    September 2, 2015 at 3:07 pm

    I’m sorry, I forgot who I m talking with on this site. Individuals who hide their real names.

    • Avatar

      Savage Reply Report comment

      September 2, 2015 at 3:33 pm

      Another one that thinks using your name is brave. There is a fine line as I recall.

      • Matt Marquardt

        Matt Marquardt Reply Report comment

        September 2, 2015 at 6:48 pm

        All due respect, I’ve been posting with my real name here for 5 years. If I have something to say, I will, and so should everyone else.

        • Avatar

          Savage Reply Report comment

          September 2, 2015 at 7:35 pm

          You are the only person that can benefit from using their own name on a site like this.

          • NIT Publisher

            NIT Publisher

            September 2, 2015 at 10:07 pm

            Perhaps. But.. we all do it on Facebook, right?

          • Avatar

            Savage

            September 2, 2015 at 11:28 pm

            Are you comparing NIT to Facebook? I guess they are both entertaining. But I think that is a stretch.

    • Avatar

      Our leaders have spoken Reply Report comment

      September 2, 2015 at 3:43 pm

      Sorry about your lapse of memory. Drinking (the kool aide) doesn’t help I am sure.

  14. Avatar

    Joseph Mirowski Reply Report comment

    September 2, 2015 at 2:59 pm

    do you know what slander implies?

    • Avatar

      Our leaders have spoken Reply Report comment

      September 2, 2015 at 3:01 pm

      do you know the difference between slander and stating facts?

      • Avatar

        Anonymous Reply Report comment

        September 3, 2015 at 8:37 am

        Neither of you appear to know the difference between libel and slander.

  15. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    September 2, 2015 at 2:54 pm

    What are the odds the place catches on fire like all the other businesses they have owned.

  16. Avatar

    Our leaders have spoken Reply Report comment

    September 2, 2015 at 2:40 pm

    Dumping your drunken problems into the street is not a viable solution and will not be tolerated.

  17. Avatar

    Allen Reply Report comment

    September 2, 2015 at 2:36 pm

    Wouldn’t it be funny if all the trouble makers, drug dealers, losers, and douche bags moved to 15 W. State St.

  18. Avatar

    Ted Savas Reply Report comment

    September 2, 2015 at 2:13 pm

    No surprise here. Another example of why Mason City is thriving, and has grown to rival Rochester, Cedar Rapids, etc.

    Oops.

  19. Avatar

    Joseph Mirowski Reply Report comment

    September 2, 2015 at 2:00 pm

    This is the how the city works with business owners, close the business down and move on to someone else!