A group of Boston restaurants from the North End and Waterfront appeared at a city licensing board hearing Wednesday to plead their cases to be awarded one of the city's seven remaining all-alcohol licenses, according to Universal Hub.
With 11 applicants for the licenses (three of the original 10 have already been awarded), the North End restaurants are looking to upgrade their current wine/beer/cordials licenses, North End Waterfront reported, to be able to compete with restaurants that already have all-alcohol licenses.
If any of the North End restaurants — Cantina Italiana, Mare Oyster Bar, Trattoria di Monica, Ducali Pizzeria, Strega Ristorante, Antico Forno, and Carmelina's — is awarded a new license, its wine, beer, and cordials license would be returned to the city. The all-alcohol licenses, in contrast, are location transferrable and could be sold off (we're talking in the $300,000 range) if the restaurant closes.
Phil Frattaroli, the man behind Ducali and the forthcoming Cunard Tavern (which has reportedly already received one of the all-alcohol licenses), spoke at Wednesday's hearing, saying he had seen diminishing numbers of diners under his current license.
Gary Pappas of Cantina Italiana likewise said he booked fewer events at his restaurant because of the alcohol restriction of his current license. The North End's city councilor Sal LaMattina threw his support in the ring, saying the beer and wine licenses no longer support today's restaurant clientele.
Applicants from the Waterfront, which has seen tremendous recent growth in the restaurant department, include Aloft Lounge at 401 D St., Tuscan Kitchen at 53 Northern Ave. (not opening until summer 2017), and Lolita Cocina and Tequila Bar at 253 Summer St.