Back in March, rumors swirled that Michael White was looking to expand his white-hot new Soho Italian restaurant Osteria Morini into the space next door. An appearance at last night's Community Board 2 SLA Licensing Committee confirms this is indeed the case. How easy it will be to get a pass from the committee is a matter all its own.
According to a presentation last night, currently Morini is at 74 capacity but operating illegally, often holding 90 people inside. The new space would alleviate the crush. One community member was appalled at the notion of adding on a new building that itself didn’t have a liquor license. She lamented that the community square she helped create was surrounded by 15 buildings. 10 of these buildings had liquor licenses. In case nobody understood the gravity of this figure, she went on to explain, while shaking her hands, that the figure is equivalent to 66 percent. Another community member was even more outraged at the thought of her “life being in danger” since the restaurant was 16 people over capacity. It continued on like this for quite a while.
At the end of the debate, the committee ruled that Osteria Morini withdraw until they get their certain issues taken care of. Expect more on this expansion when they appear for another go.
· Next Door Expansion Rumored for White's Osteria Morini [~ENY~]
—Reporting by Maite Alvarez