Oakland Restaurant Losing Customers Because of Dead Fish Smell
- A restaurant in Oakland, California is losing business because of the stench of dead fish caused by a huge algae bloom.
- The restaurant’s staff recently scooped out 150 pounds of dead fish.
- Business is down 60%, according to the restaurant’s operations manager.
One hundred and fifty pounds of dead smelly fish isn’t exactly the recipe for a thriving lakeside restaurant.
Sadly, it’s the exact scenario facing Lake Chalet, a seafood restaurant and bar in Oakland, California, that has what’s usually considered a prime alfresco opportunity on its dock that extends out into Lake Merritt, the city’s downtown 140-acre tidal lagoon.
The San Francisco Chronicle reported Thursday that the restaurant has been losing customers due to the stench caused by a bloom of algae that is killing thousands of fish in the lake.
The restaurant’s senior operations manager, Scott Salvatierra, told the Chronicle that he has had to compensate customers who had to tap out from eating on the dock because they couldn’t “stand the smell.”
Salvatierra said he and his staff have scooped out about 150 pounds of dead fish in the last two days with a pool skimmer. Meanwhile, he said customers have decreased 60%, according to the Chronicle.
“We’re known for our seafood dishes, so nobody wants to eat seafood dishes with the smell of rotten fish around them,” Salvatierra said.
The Chronicle noted that the algae bloom was first reported in Alameda a little more than a month ago, and has spread throughout the San Francisco Bay.
Unhealthy water hasn’t been limited to the Bay Area, however. Earlier this week, public health officials in Los Angeles County issued warnings for four area beaches due to the high bacterial levels in the water, the Los Angeles Times reported. Visitors to those beaches have been advised to avoid swimming and other activities.