Northborough reaches limit of all-alcohol beverage licenses
By Genevieve Jinson, Community Reporter
Northborough – The town of Northborough has reached its capacity on all-alcohol beverage licenses following the issuance of two additional licenses at the Board of Selectmen meeting Sept. 10. The two restaurants issued licenses were Zem Han and Mikaku.
Zem Han, located at 4 West Main St. is one of the newest restaurants to open in Northborough last month. Selectmen Jeff Amberson and Dawn Rand have dined at the Mediterranean restaurant on separate occasions and gave the owners positive reviews.
“The food was wonderful,” Rand said. “The alcohol license would be the perfect complement to what the restaurant is offering.”
The approval of the license is conditional upon the following: the licensee must obtain a special permit under the use classifications from the Zoning Board of Appeals and the outdoor seating area must be reviewed by the Police and Fire departments prior to its first use.
Mikaku, a Japanese restaurant located at 290 West Main St., Unit 9, is a Japanese restaurant that has been in business in town for the past five years. The restaurant owner expressed concern in competing with neighboring restaurants that already have all-alcohol beverage licenses; he stated that, on average, Mikaku has had to turn away 15 to 20 percent of business due to the lack of license.
Selectman Leslie Rutan complimented the restaurant and commented that she was impressed with the owner’s experience and background in the restaurant business.
“It’s wonderful,” she said.
The approval of the license is conditional upon Mikaku, Inc. receiving satisfactory inspections by the building, Fire and health departments.
The number of all-alcohol beverage licenses a Massachusetts town can hold is dependent upon the town’s population. As of now, Northborough has issued 15 all-alcohol beverage licenses and five restaurant wine-and-malt licenses. Town Administrator John Coderre addressed the issue of what can happen when the license limit is reached.
“The question that typically comes up when you reach a quota is the issue of whether or not the town will allow BYOB for restaurants.”
BYOB is an option for restaurants that would like to obtain an alcohol license but cannot obtain one because one is not available from the town. Coderre said that this would be a potential option if a restaurant approaches the town for a license in the future and one is not available.
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