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Notorious Deep Ellum Bar Bottled Blonde Under Investigation Over COVID-19 Capacity Limits

Photos of the always-crowded drinking destination and “pizzeria” went viral over the weekend, showing massive crowds and few masks

Crowds at Bottled Blonde in June
Kathy Tran/EDFW
Amy McCarthy is a reporter at, focusing on pop culture, policy and labor, and only the weirdest online trends.

Controversial Deep Ellum bar Bottled Blonde is now under investigation by the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission over allegedly violating Gov. Greg Abbott’s rules for restaurant operations during the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to Fox 4, the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission is looking into how Bottled Blonde has operated over the past few months after photos of the overcrowded space went viral on social media. Under its previous license classification, Bottled Blonde was considered a bar, but the perpetually packed Deep Ellum spot obtained an updated license that would allow it to operate as a restaurant back in July.

Right now, restaurants are allowed to operate at limited capacity, but multiple photos throughout the month of August depict Bottled Blonde with significant crowds of people — many of whom are not wearing masks — that appear to be in excess of the 50 percent capacity limit. Scope out a video of the madness below:

I’m so over this, take a wrecking ball to this place. “Bottled Blonde thrives while Deep Ellum dies”

Posted by Mike Ziemer on Thursday, August 20, 2020

Back in May, when bars were briefly allowed to reopen at limited capacity, Bottled Blonde did not do a great job of managing the crowds or enforcing social distancing guidelines. Videos from the first weekend of reopening in late May look almost identical to those shot in August, when the restaurant was allegedly operating as a restaurant.

The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission reportedly plans to conduct inspections at Dallas restaurants in the coming days, which could result in liquor license suspensions for bars like Bottled Blonde that don’t follow the rules. In June, three DFW bars lost their liquor licenses for 30 days after failing to maintain capacity limits.