The North End/Waterfront Residents’ Association (NEWRA) voted 17-9 in favor of Going Bananas’ proposal to add beer and wine to their grocery store at 65 Salem Street.

Frank Scire, owner of Going Bananas Market, appeared before the Association Thursday evening with his plans to go to the Board of Appeal to change the legal occupancy of the building to take-out (use item 36A) and a retail liquor store.

Scire wants to add a small cooler of beer and wine options for his customers so they can do their grocery and beverage shopping all in one place.

“They have been asking for it for many years,” he said. “If you ignore your customers, eventually you go out of business. You have to change with the times.”

Currently, Scire operates his business from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. however, with the license change, he could seek an 11 p.m. closing time. NEWRA members said they would be against the extended closing time, saying that is too late for a grocery store to be open. Scire said he has no intention of staying open that late.

“It’s just something my attorney suggested since it’s an option,” he said.

NEWRA voted 17-9 in favor of Scire’s plans and will send a letter of recommendation to the Boston Zoning Committee.


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4 COMMENTS

  1. What is the public need for this license? People can buy beer, wine and alcohol in three places on Salem St: the Wild Duck a block away , Monica’s Mercato, and Salem Market. They can also buy beer at the Boston Public Market and several places on Hanover St. Sorry but people can make multiple stops on their way home. I would bet many of them stop at Bova’s for dessert before going home, There is no public need for this license.

    • This has been pretty thoroughly debated before, but liquor licenses are a license to sell liquor products which to the public. Whether the public needs them or not, is up to the public who shop at the establishment.

    • If we went by that logic then nobody would be able to open up a food establishment in the neighborhood. Or a convenient store. Or a laundramat. Or a bakery.

      This is a locally owned business who have been good neighbors to the community for years. Good for them. Hope they get it.

  2. The real question is, Why a good man and stunning human being like Frank should ever have had to wait so long? These ridiculous dog-and-pony escapades for the bored and the relentlessly well-heeled are as out-of-touch as the Waterfront is with Salem Street. Here is the Why. I supported Going Bananas for 17 years. If I wanted a beer or wine accompaniment to my meal, I would love to give him the business for having it there. I’ll bet other purveyors in the area support this. You know, three well-spaced hot dog stands on a beach do better than one alone or even two. In other words, everyone wins. As the great Jorge Mendoza once said, each of us is like an island. He was referring to shops. “Public need” sounds Stalinesque. How about free markets? Who are you to determine public need? I mean, use your name at least. Frank Scire is one of the most honorable merchants and men I have ever known. He deserves this, and so do his good patrons. While I no longer live in the neighborhood, Going Bananas was unforgettably good to me. I am in the North End almost weekly. There is a reason for that. The merchants and shops are simply one-of-a-kind. Celebrate the prosperity you enjoy. I enjoy a very nice life in Rhode Island now, but any city near me is a nose-dive compared to Boston. The North End is its shining star. And Frank is his own planet, let alone island. Congratulations, Frank. And God Bless you richly! P.S. Beer and wine in stores that carry many other things has a nice cachet. It adds to the character and quality of the neighborhood, and speaks to the distinction and and discernment of its inhabitants. I wonder how many liquor stores the North End would have in aggregate if you took all the beer and wine cases spread across stores whose primary business is not beer and wine. Probably way less than one. Likely, we’re still catching up to the amount per capita since Martignetti left. I see no crisis here. Get a life is what I’d say, but keeping it classy. Ooops, I just didn’t.

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