New Liquor Licensees Revealed

Yesterday’s Georgetown Current contained an article discussing the decision by the ABC Board to expand the available liquor licenses within the Georgetown Moratorium by seven. ABRA officials had previously stated that the licenses would be issued on a first-come-first-served basis. The Current listed the seven parties who have applications pending and thus who are likely to take home the new licenses. Some are familiar faces, some are new, and others just left GM a little confused.

Bill’s Bar & Burger – 3347 M St.

That’s the old Philadelphia Cheesesteak Factory Building, so it would seem a new tenant has been found. It also seems that this is related to a bar with the exact same name in the Meat Packing District in New York. So like Serendipity 3, it would be a DC outpost of a NYC establishment. Given the lackluster appearance of the burger on the restaurant’s own website, GM is not too excited for this arrival.

Tackle Box – 3245 M St.

This is no surprise. Jonathan Umbell has been trying to secure a license for Tackle Box for quite some time. Hopefully you’ll be able to enjoy a beer with your lobster roll soon.

Puro Cafe – 1529 Wisconsin

A recent arrival to the upper Wisconsin Ave. neighborhood, Puro Cafe has received positive reviews. The only sticking point GM can foresee is if they want to serve drinks in their backyard late at night. Since that backs up to residences on Q St. and 32nd, those homeowners might object.

Hu’s Wear – 2906 M St.

Huh? Why is a clothing store seeking a liquor license? They seem to hold events every once in a while, but do they really need a liquor license for that (instead of using the caterers)?

SPINDC – 1010 Wisconsin Ave.

Another mystery. That address is basically an office building with a couple street level stores, including a high end furniture gallery. Nothing comes up in Google under that name. Weird.

Paul Bakery – 1078 Wisconsin Ave.

GM has covered this one before. It’s another chain-that-you-wouldn’t-really-think-is-a-chain. In this case a French bakery that is going into the old kitchen of the City Tavern Club (the front door will be just south of the Banana Republic).

Zenobia Lounge – 1025 31st St.

Relatively new Middle Eastern bookstore-cum-lounge, Zenobia Lounge appears to be branching out into liquor sales. It was actually the subject of some noise complaints at a recent ANC meeting, so GM foresees at least some bumps on the way.

All in all, this list is a little underwhelming. Three of the establishments already exist, two are a mystery, and the other two are chain outposts. Not bad, but not exactly the type of new and interesting restaurants that GM was hoping for (like those that seem to sprout up overnight all over U St. and H St.).

Oh well…




Filed under ABRA

8 responses to “New Liquor Licensees Revealed

  1. Ken Archer

    Zenobia is more than a lounge – it’s a coffeeshop and a really good restaurant with quality food at affordable prices. One of my favorite places to eat or have coffee in Georgetown. It’s a mystery to me why it isn’t busier.

  2. The Heon family, which owns the location where Bill’s Burger will be, do not deserve a liquor license being granted. They are terrible landlords, letting their buildings (34th & M, the old movie theatre on Wisc., and Nathans former building) fall into major disrepair. Why reward such derelict landlords by granting their buildings a liquor license, thereby allowing them to raise the rent. To hell with the Heons. It is time our community and this city stand up and crack down on sleazy landlords.

  3. Jeremy Skog

    Why wouldn’t every store apply for a liquor license (even if they don’t use it)? Since they’re artificially limited in supply the possession of a liquor license can drastically increase a property’s value at relatively little cost. What seems more confusing is why every shopfront that could be a bar isn’t on this list.

  4. GM

    Jeremy, as I recall ABRA required applicants to have a business plan ( and maybe even funding) in place before they’d get approved. That probably limited prospecting.

  5. Jeremy Skog

    The application only asks for expected food/liquor sales as well as a description of any other business conducted on the premises. There may be other requirements but they aren’t listed on the website or on the forms.

  6. Jonathan

    Bill’s bar and burger is delicious and second only to Shake Shack or Melon’s in terms of awesomeness. Yes, the picture isn’t that great, but that’s not what it’s about.
    Couldn’t be happier it’s coming to Georgetown.

  7. Gtown

    I am more than excited that Bill’s Bar and Burger is coming to Georgetown. I would much rather have another food “chain” (used very loosely) come to Georgetown rather than have an empty building sit there. I think Georgetown will enjoy this new addition contrary to GM’s opinion.

  8. Pingback: Update on Those New Liquor License Applicants «

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