Shop Talk

Chloe’s Coffee Obtains Hookah Bar Permit

Chloe’s Coffee in Kentlands Downtown is a popular place. The coffee shop now offers beer and wine; features karaoke on Friday nights and live music on Saturday nights; and highlights the talents of a new local artist each month in its art gallery. In addition, the shop welcomes amateur musicians of all genres to perform at its Open Mic nights on Wednesdays and Thursdays.

One of Chloe’s biggest draws, however, is its hookah lounge atmosphere. Traditionally, hookahs were smoked in Middle Eastern coffee shops and lounges, which provided a relaxing atmosphere to talk and discuss the events of the day.

There has been some controversy surrounding establishments that offer hookah in light of the ban on cigarette smoking in public places in Montgomery County.

“A restaurant that offers hookahs on its menu in addition to food or drink may qualify for a waiver, depending on the waiver criteria of the jurisdiction in which the restaurant is located,” said Maryland Assistant Attorney General Sandra Benson Brantley in an opinion written on the subject.

Chloe’s coffee recently obtained the necessary permit to feature hookah use at its establishment.

“You need to get approval and a permit from Montgomery County including an exemption. It’s a process and takes time, but its straightforward. We got our permit several months ago and business is good,” said Jay Faruque of Chloe’s Coffee.

Chloe’s Coffee is located at 244 Main Street in Kentlands and is open Monday – Saturday from 6:30 a.m. – 1 a.m., and on Sunday from 7 a.m. – 1 a.m.

New Space Helps Yoyogi Sushi Better Serve Customers

Nancy Liu, owner of Yoyogi Sushi at 328 Main Street, couldn’t be happier about her decision to lease the space next door to her original restaurant for additional customer seating.

“I’m so happy that people can relax and enjoy their food. Before, they couldn’t taste their food because everything was so rushed,” Liu said.

The property adjacent to Yoyogi was vacant and, in April, Liu decided to lease the property to provide more table space for customers. The wall between the existing restaurant and the additional space was not taken down, and the kitchen and service area remain in their original location. Patrons order and pay for their meals and then go outside and next door to enjoy their sushi.

“Most of my customers come three or more times per week. Now they can come at lunchtime with a large party and have a place to sit,” Liu said. “Business has gotten even better now that people have someplace to relax.”

Yoyogi Sushi is at 328 Main Street and may be reached at 301.963.0001.