Fans of The Lost Leaf can breathe a sigh of relief. The popular Roosevelt Row beer and wine bar just raised $25,000 on GoFundMe to keep the place in business until the end of May. And now its owner wants to reward its patrons in honor of the occasion — which will also help cut operating costs. This weekend, the Lost Leaf is selling its entire stock of beer and wine during a “blowout sale” taking place on Saturday, May 2, and Sunday, May 3.
Owner Eric Dahl says it will help the bar save $1,500 in utility bills from not having to refrigerate the bar's supply, which would spoil otherwise.
“If we ran our coolers, we'd also need to have the [air conditioning] on to not risk blowing out the cooler motors and that's a big electricity bill we're trying to avoid,” Dahl says. “So we figured since we met our GoFundMe goal, why not sell everything at cost and give something back to the community?”
The sale will take place from 5 to 9 p.m. each day via the bar’s walk-up service window on the north side of the building. Lost Leaf employees will be wearing masks and gloves at all times and purchases can only be made with credit and debit cards. They also won’t be offering growler service.
Dahl estimates the bar has a few hundred six- and 12-packs currently in stock. While he didn’t have an exact list of what brands would be available, Dahl says it's comparable to their usually deep selection of ales, lagers, stouts, and other intoxicating brews available in bottles and cans.
“Normally when we're open, we order [from our distributors] every week, so this would equate to a week's worth of product we're trying to sell off,” he says. “It's all going to be at cost, so it's going to be similar to grocery store prices or better.”
The Lost Leaf, which is located on Fifth Street just off Roosevelt Row, has been dark since shutting down on March 15 because of COVID-19. Unlike other local bars, it hasn’t offered to-go orders until now, due to a financial crunch going on before the pandemic.
“It's a challenge to keep that place running for the amount of orders we might receive during the [quarantine],” Dahl says. “The reality was, we were in a dire situation before [the pandemic] because of the amount of competition that's around us on Fifth Street. So when COVID-19 hit, that was almost a knockout blow for sure.”
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Thankfully, the recently completed GoFundMe fundraiser gave them enough cash to make it through the next month.
“That was really exciting because it was originally a make-or-break scenario for us when we launched [the fundraiser],” Dahl says. “People really came through for us.”
Dahl is cautiously optimistic that The Lost Leaf can reopen on May 15, when Arizona’s current “stay-at-home” order is scheduled to expire, or possibly in June.
“We're anticipating that we're going to be closed for May also,” Dahl says. “Realistically we feel we'll be waiting until June 1.”