The 29-year-old herbal shop Scarlet Sage Herb Co. had just moved from Valencia Street to Lower Pac Heights last year, but city red tape and slow foot traffic have the store announcing they’ll close permanently “at the end of February.”
The photo at the top of this post of the Scarlet Sage Herb Co. is not the shop’s current location. The herbal apothecary opened at 22nd and Guerrero streets in 1995, then owned by Lisa Kellman and Dino Lucas, and resided at a couple different addresses on the Valencia Street corridor over the years. Longtime employee and current owner Laura Ash bought the place in 2015, though it moved off Valencia Street this past June, to a new Lower Pac Heights storefront that opened in September
But they would not be long for the new location. Broke-Ass Stuart reported this week that Scarlet Sage Herb Co. is closing permanently.
“We will be closing at the end of February,” the shop posted to Instagram Tuesday. “We opened on Fillmore 7 months ago and it’s been slower than we expected. I had the city give me a cease + desist for selling bulk herbs (yuck), and I have gone through the city channels trying to get grants to help us stay open (there is no help worth writing about, BTW, just a lot of talking). Looking deeper at the local economics + the move, it’s inevitable that revenue would slow, we just didn’t project it to be THIS slow.”
“Everything will be on sale starting tomorrow,” the post from this past Tuesday continues, “and we will keep you posted on exact closure date soon.”
As mentioned in that post, and as the SF Standard reported in September, the city Department of Public Health had been dogging them over a requirement for a food permit, and several new required sinks, because of the scoops they used to portion herbs. The cost would have been in the tens of thousands of dollars. Ash then put the shop up for sale in November, according to SFGate, but apparently no buyer has materialized.
While a closing date has not been announced, Broke-Ass Stuart notes that Ash’s online herbalism certification program Land of Verse will continue to operate
Image: The Scarlet Sage Herb Co. via Facebook