A controversial Williamsburg bar that has run up thousands of dollars in fines is about to be sold to a new owner who is vowing to clean up the joint’s act.
Geoffrey Weber plans to turn Triple Crown into a quieter bar called the Brooklyn Café, according to the soon-to-be-former owners and community board officials.
“He promised us he will run a bar that you’ll want to take your parents to,” said Mieszho Kalita, the chair of Community Board 1’s public safety committee.
The community board recommended that the liquor license be extended to Weber, but called on him not to play live music or have a DJ.
Board members said Weber has agreed to a long list of restrictions: installing noise inhibitors, providing outdoor ashtrays and offering no happy hour promotions or liquor in the backyard. Backyard hours will be limited, and Weber will only be able to play soft background music.
“He knows the business. He’s nice and accommodating,” said Myles Tipley, a current co-owner of Triple Crown.
Tipley and his co-owners put the bar up for sale after paying around $7,500 in violations that included noise and overcrowding. They believe they have found the best buyer for the community, Tipley said.
But the assurances didn’t satisfy some of the Triple Crown’s neighbors, who’ve tried to get the bar, at 108 Bedford Ave., shut down ever since it opened in August, 2004.
“We don’t want anyone having a liquor license there,” said Frank Nauer, who lives a floor above the ground-level bar in the same six-story apartment building.
Nauer and some other residents said music blared 20 hours a day from Triple Crown through 16 speakers. The music caused the entire building to vibrate and could be heard for four blocks, Nauer said.
“For the last three years, Triple Crown has been a gigantic problem,” said Kalita. “There were literally thousands of 311 calls about the bar,” he said.
Kalita was shocked that the State Liquor Authority extended Triple Crown’s liquor license for another three years, a couple of months ago. In July, CB 1 sent a letter to the SLA requesting denial of the license’s renewal.
At one point, underage trainees from the Police Academy were served alcohol in a police sting operation, Kalita said. Tipley said it happened only once, just a couple of months after the bar opened. “The guy had a full beard and he looked as old as hell,” said Tipley.
Amid noise complaints and other problems that closed the bar for four consecutive Saturdays, the owners lost $7,000 to $8,000 per week in gross revenue, said Lindsey Caldwell, Tipley’s wife. “We book DJs and it’s loud,” she admitted.
Some neighbors who spoke at the meeting said the bar’s name may change but feared the problems wouldn’t. Kalita, though, was hopeful Weber would keep his word.
“I have my belief in Mr. Weber,” said Kalita.
At least one customer didn’t want to see Triple Crown close. “It’s kind of sad that the bar is closing down. It was a very chill spot,” said Ron Croudy, a Manhattanite who visited Triple Crown whenever in Williamsburg.Â
©2007 Community News Group
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