Students of Colorado culinary schools have probably enjoyed learning how to make festive cocktails for special occasions at some point in their education. Many of them may even want to move on to open a bar or a restaurant following their commencement. While this is an entirely amiable ambition, it’s worth noting that the privilege of serving alcohol also comes with a great deal of responsibility. Violating that obligation to safely serve alcohol can lead to a great deal of trouble, as one Colorado Springs restaurant recently found out. According to Mediaite, a local franchise of the popular chain Joe’s Crab Shack recently served alcoholic beverages to a group of very young children by mistake, which resulted in a call to the paramedics.
Trista and Omar Montoya, a local couple, had gone to the Joe’s Crab Shack with their children,and a group of cousins to dine on the weekend of Nov. 7, 2014. In total, they had brought six children with them, ranging in age from two to eight. The Daily Mail has reported that all of the children ordered a beverage called a ‘Shark Nibble’ off of the menu. The Shark Nibble is apparently a popular drink for children visiting the establishment, as it is a sweet, blue soda beverage that comes with a plastic shark toy in the glass. The children were all served their drinks, but after roughly 30 minutes the waitress rushed back in a panic and explained to the adults at the table that the beverages had been mistakenly made with the wrong ingredients. Apparently instead of Shark Nibbles, the children had all been served ‘Shark Bites.’
While the similarity in the names of the two beverages may make this seem like a relatively innocent mistake, what the children ended up receiving was far from a reasonable beverage for anyone their age. The cocktail, a Shark Bite, is made with a combination of rum, vodka, blue curacao and grenadine, making it completely inappropriate and potentially harmful to someone that young. By the time that the waitress and restaurant management returned to the table to reveal their error, many of the children had made considerable progress in their drinks and the youngest of them, a two-year-old girl, had completely finished hers. She began to feel ill shortly thereafter and the paramedics were called to the restaurant. Thankfully, all of the children were pronounced to be fine after being checked by medical personnel.
Both of the Montoyas have indicated their disapproval and that they are upset to multiple news outlets. As one would expect, the restaurant has also made clear that these sorts of errors are completely outside of its expectations for all of its staff and management personnel. In a statement they issued, they summated these feelings shortly and clearly:
“We do not condone underage service of any kind. Our guests can rest assured that our processes are continuously examined so that incidents like this are avoided,” the statement read. The local police are also said to be investigating, though criminal charges have not yet been filed.