The Vortex as of February 1, 2019, will no longer allow smoking inside.
Its new policy, effective at both the Little Five Points and Midtown restaurants, is the result of a month-long survey with 11,000 entries.
“Since 1992, The Vortex has always been the place where you can eat, drink and, yes, smoke to your heart’s content,” Michael Benoit, owner of The Vortex, said on a blog post regarding the survey’s results.
“And many people stand by the old cliché, ‘If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.’ But the plain truth is, we’ve noticed fewer and fewer of our customers utilizing the option to smoke at our bar. And we’ve also seen a significant decrease in the number of our employees who smoke. A few years back it was 100%. Now, it’s definitely a minority.”
For the entire month of January, The Vortex hosted the smoking survey through its website.
Here are the results:
- 60.6 percent claim to have been patrons of The Vortex for 6 years or more
- 54.6 percent of the respondents said that they have never smoked and another 25.7 percent said that they used to smoke but no longer do
- 51.5 percent majority of survey-takers claim that they do not patronize The Vortex (or patronize less) because smoking is allowed
- 69.5 percent of survey-takers said that they would like to see the smoking policy change
“Our fans have spoken, and we have made a decision. Ready? Here it is: Smoking will no longer be allowed anywhere INSIDE our premises,” Benoit posted.
“However, since smoking has always been an option at The Vortex, and since a slightly higher than average percentage of our clientele may actually smoke, we will still offer smokers the option to do their thing outdoors.”
At The Vortex Midtown, the smoking of cigarettes (and e-cigarettes) will be allowed when dining outside on our sidewalk patio.
At The Vortex Little Five Points, smoking will be allowed on the open fenced waiting area just outside the bar, known as the “playpen.”
“The smoking of cigars, pipes, clove cigarettes or anything deemed ‘illegal’ by the evil overlords will continue to be forbidden.”
These policy changes will all go into effect immediately at both Vortex locations.
“We believe that this policy change will help satisfy the largest number of patrons possible. I suppose many people will celebrate these decisions, while others may be slightly disappointed. But I hope everyone keeps one thing in perspective. As always, we are doing our best to please our core group of supporters. And this really is only about a smoking policy in a bar. So relax. Everything will be fine. Just take a deep breath in the newly clean air of The Vortex.”