City begins process to strip C.F. Donovan's liquor license

The Boston Licensing Board has started proceedings that could end with bar owner Arthur Donovan losing his valuable liquor license for his C. F. Donovan's Bar and restaurant on Savin Hill Ave.

Donovan is already close to losing another liquor license he's held for nearly three years for a Cleary Square, Hyde Park restaurant that has never opened. The city closed his popular Dorchester location in November for failing to make payments on $300,000 in city loans used to get the Hyde Park location open.

Donovan failed to appear at a licensing-board hearing in Boston City Hall this morning. Board members will meet again on Thursday to consider what to do about a citation issue by Boston Police last month for not serving liquor. Board Chairman Daniel Pokaski said the board won't strip Donovan of the Savin Hill license then, but could set a six-month time limit for him to either sell the license or re-start the business.

Because Boston has only a set number of liquor licenses, they are valuable commodities - and license holders are required to either use them, sell them or give them up.

Boston Police Det. Kevin McGill told the licensing board this morning he drove by the Savin Hill location around 9:30 p.m. and found it closed, with paper on the inside of the windows. A follow-up location showed the restaurant remained shut and he issued a citation for failure to comply with city license regulations.

In a related development, the president of the bank which holds the mortgage on the property said the bank had no role in the closing last year.

"It is absolutely untrue that we shut [C.F. Donovan's] down," Mt. Washington Bank CEO Ed Merritt said today in an interview. "After he (Donovan) abandoned the property, we cleaned it up. We did not shut it down."

He said the bank "did everything we can to work with the owner," and added, "We're hoping that soon there will be a foreclosure auction, and it will be transferred to someone who will operate it. We know how important that is to the community."

The banker said an auction could take place before spring.

"We're looking at a time frame of February or March," he told the Reporter.

Reporter publisher Ed Forry and Universal Hub's Adam Gaffin contributed to this report.

Comments

Wow, if you think a Birkenstock is trendy you are worse off than I thought!!! And by the way I was referring to the words you wrote about yourself. Go back and read what you labeled yourself. I didn't. Crawl back under the rock you live under or cave you are stuck in.

"The obverse (and obvious) implication of that sentence is that those who were here before the trendier and fun new people were boring "townies" with a limited, and stubborn ignorance of the world around them."

You came up with those words, not me. But as they say...if the shoe fits....

YOU came up with THESE WORDS... "help meet the desires of some of the trendier and fun folks that have moved into the neighborhood as of late"....NOT ME!!

I'll PROUDLY (chest out for the world to see) lay claim to all of my words related to this (http://www.dotnews.com/2010/city-begins-process-strip-cf-donovans-liquor...)...will you?

Here's my uncouth, untrendy and boring "townie" vernacular reply to "If the shoe fits".... your birkenstock is firmly up your transient yuppie a$$!

Want a tappa with that?

God Bless

AMDG

I never said Donovan's wasn't trendy and fun. In fact, I am all for Donovan's reopening exactly as it was. It had a great fun neighborhood feel and was good for the neighborhood. What I don't want is a pizza place or another bad chinese restaurant with awful food and signage and all the dirt that seems to come along with them.

To your point about me being transient....you have no clue who I am. In fact, I have invested over half a million in my own home on Savin Hill and plan to stay there.

..."help meet the desires of some of the trendier and fun folks that have moved into the neighborhood as of late."...

The obverse (and obvious) implication of that sentence is that those who were here before the trendier and fun new people were boring "townies" with a limited, and stubborn ignorance of the world around them.

As a lifelong resident of the Savin Hill neighborhood, I can assure those new transplants who claim a cosmopolitan superiority to the anchored locals that they are mistaken. From my earliest childhood memories to today, Savin Hill, as well as Dorchester and greater Boston have been fun and exciting places to live. It's always been comprised of people who are full of friendship, love and a "suck the marrow out of life" attitude.

That said, I hope you bring many of the same attributes of those who were here before you and you are the cornerstone of many generations to come who call the neighborhood home.

Please let's have a new restaurant, if not Donovan's, that will be good for the area and help meet the desires of some of the trendier and fun folks that have moved into the neighborhood as of late. That whole little area has so much potential.

I guess those of us who have lived here for generations are not so trendy and fun. Thank god all you transient yuppies have brought so much excitement and fun to our lives!

FYI...you have a "trendier and fun" place a few blocks down Savin Hill Ave. It's called the Harp and Bard. The owner spent close to half a mil in renovations to cater to your needs.

And I also said that little area ha so much potential, meaning it would be good to have the right place move in there to hopefully help further move the neighborhood in a positive direction. Do you think the convenience store next to Donovan's that neve finished the windows and roof looks nice and is going to attract anything but crap to the area?

I don't care to speculate on what may or may not have brought about the current situation with the restaurant or the intricacies involving liquor licenses and financing, in the end, Arthur Donovan is a man who made the Savin Hill community better ....from the corner of Dot Ave and East Cottage to Syndney and Savin Hill Ave.