South Hills bar has liquor license suspended for allegedly violating state’s order

CASTLE SHANNON, Pa. — Rusty’s Pittsburgh Sports Bar in Castle Shannon has had its liquor license suspended for allegedly violating the state’s orders.

It’s just one example of the push and pull between businesses that want to reopen and the health of the people they’re serving.

According to owner Russell Suprek, he was only offering takeout, but according to the liquor control board, he wasn’t following governor’s guidelines.

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For the past two months, Rusty’s Pittsburgh Sports Bar has been surviving by offering its customers curbside, but on Wednesday, the bar was locked up tight.

“The Bureau of Liquor Control Enforcement had stopped at the establishment during a routine check, and as a routine of that routine check, Rusty’s Sports Bar received a letter from the PA LCB suspending their ability to use a license,” said Suprek’s attorney, Louie Caputo.

Caputo said the State Police Bureau of Liquor Control Enforcement suspended all operations, accusing Suprek of violating the governor's order.

“He understands the severity of the shutdown, but he believes he was operating within the guidelines of the governor's orders and will continue to do so as we go forward,” Caputo said.

Rusty’s Pittsburgh Sports Bar isn’t the only business under scrutiny.

Gil’s Cafe in South Park took to social media after it said it was told to remove a makeshift customer seating area in the parking lot. According to the post, the order came from the Allegheny County Health Department.

A spokesperson for the Health Department told Channel 11 the restaurant was not shut down but was reminded that outdoor eating is not yet allowed and only takeout and curbside orders are permitted.

As for Rusty’s Sports Bar, Channel 11 reached out to officials at the LCB, but they have not responded to our request for more information on why the bar’s liquor license was suspended.

Caputo told Channel 11 that he and his client aren’t sure either.

“My understanding in talking to Rusty, there was nobody inside consuming alcohol on the premises that all sales were to go,” Caputo said. Caputo said he has reached out to the LCB and State Police Liquor Control Enforcement to find out more and discuss the next steps, but that takes time.

And time is not on the side of any bar or restaurant owner right now who were already being hurt by the governor’s orders.

The restaurant’s license suspension will not be lifted until the LCB decides to lift it or the governor moves all restaurants and bars to the green designation.