By John Lynds
There was audible gasp from the crowd when the vote against a new bar and restaurant proposed for the former East Boston Kitchen (EBK) on Sumner Street was read at Monday night’s Jeffries Point Neighborhood Association meeting.
In a close vote, JPNA members rejected Josh Weinstein’s proposal to convert the EBK building into a concept bar and restaurant called The Quite Few by a vote of 14 to 9. Weinstein’s purchase of the building is contingent upon him gaining a full liquor license for the site. Weinstein is hoping to get one of the new neighborhood restricted licenses to be able to open up shop. Weinstein deferred a vote by the Boston Licensing Board (BLB) until he received neighborhood approval from the JPNA.
Whether he will go forward with a BLB vote with a JPNA rejection is unclear, but he may tweak some of the proposal in order to gain JPNA approval. One concern was Weinstein’s proposed 1 a.m. closure time. Some felt it may be a bit too late for a neighborhood pub.
However, Weinstein assured the crowd that he would not cater to a rowdy crowd.
“Not looking to serve people that want to come in, get rowdy, get drunk and cause trouble,” he said. “My concept for The Quit Few is a neighborhood pub and restaurant where you go to relax, forget about the outside world, catch up on neighborhood news, meet old and make new friends. discuss things that make us laugh and have a good time. It’s a place to drop your guard and meet the community.”
Weinstein, who has 15 years of bar and restaurant experience, worked for the past four years for a restaurant and bar group in New York City. Weinstein moved to Eastie recently with his wife and lives on Eagle Hill. He said he was looking for the right place and opportunity to bring his neighborhood pub concept to fruition, and found the EBK space available.
“My wife and I moved here to set up roots because we want to be here for a long time,” said Weinstein. “I want to be able to create something that I can pass on to my kids when we start having a family. That’s something that is really important to me. This will be my second home and you don’t invite people into your home that mistreat it.”
On food, Weinstein said his proposed opening would be 11 a.m. and the food would be comfort food and pub fare like sandwiches, burgers, wings, and appetizers for lunch and dinner. If the bar and restaurant is successful he would consider opening earlier for breakfast and capture the morning commuters heading past his establishment on the way to the MBTA.
The inside would consist of a kitchen, dinning room seating and a bar with a capacity of about 40 people.