Thefts of specialty glasses and mugs becoming costly for local r - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Thefts of specialty glasses and mugs becoming costly for local restaurants and bars

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It's a problem plaguing restaurants and bars around our region. We are talking about theft, but not from the till. People are stealing glasses right off the table tops and bars and just walking off.

It usually happens in a crowded scene. Restaurant and bar staff don’t notice it has happened until after the customer is long gone.

Specialty glasses and mugs are being stolen at restaurants everywhere, including at the Lincoln restaurant in Logan Circle.

“If you want a mug, just let us know and we'll be happy to sell you one,” said Lincoln executive chef Demetrio Zavala.

But some people don't ask. They just take. Lincoln serves mojitos in copper mugs and they are not cheap.

“[The mugs] can be anywhere from, [it] depends if we do a logo or not, $35 to $45 a mug,” said Zavala.

It's hard to police because it happens in an instant.

“We've experimented with a couple of things, either taking an ID or holding your card for your tab,” said Zavala.

The restaurants are not happy because the theft equates to a real financial loss. In two years since Lincoln opened its doors, a staggering number of these copper mugs have disappeared.

Zavala estimates about 500 of the mugs have been taken. That equates to about $20,000 in losses.

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