A Roseville restaurant who defied Governor Newsom's pandemic orders is now being targeted by state alcohol regulators and faces closure.
Matthew Oliver recently learned the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control wants to shut his restaurant, House of Oliver, down for 30 days as a penalty for violating the state’s pandemic health orders in late 2020 and early 2021, and is now fighting the suspension notice. Oliver could potentially temporarily lose his liquor license for his flagship restaurant, a wine lounge, and part of his livelihood, according to his attorney.
Oliver has drawn statewide attention in past, when he vocalized his criticism of Governor Newsom's administration's handling of the coronavirus pandemic during the lockdowns. Oliver was one of several business owners who kept his Roseville restaurant open for indoor service during lockdowns despite a state-mandated coronavirus curfew. His actions drew the attention of Alcoholic Beverage Control, where he was cited and later filed against for a civil suit in the agency’s administrative court.
Oliver employs over 100 people across three restaurants, and has stated that the continued closure would have incurred the permanent loss of jobs and even the permanent closure of his restaurants. “People think I did this to make a profit,” Oliver said. “But that couldn’t be further from the truth. I had to stay open for my employees.”
The case is still going forward - Oliver does not yet have a date for an administrative hearing.