Nothing but a note on the door from Portuguese Bend about the closure of its storefront. Photo by Joe. E. Bee.
The space's most active owner and the company's distiller, Simon Haxton, has not returned request for comment on the closure, which follows a steady decline of service hours across the past several months, from open seven days a week for full lunch and dinner service when the space first opened in 2019 to three days a week with limited hours come January of this year.
Additionally, surrounding rumors about the distillery, landlords have confirmed that its two owners—Brenda Rivera of Lola's and The Social List, and Haxton—are in a legal battle concerning Haxton's handling of the distillery.
"With all the labor of love it took to create the first distillery in Long Beach, it saddened me to see its doors closing," Rivera said. "No one could have ever predicted COVID-19, imagined the climate of downtown, and Haxton's inability to pivot the business."