The Meatball Controversy

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Who knew a meatball shop could cause such chaos? Apparently the Upper East Side. Local residents were up in arms at this past Wednesday's Community Board 8 Street Life Subcommittee meeting about the chain restaurant Meatball Shop setting up shop in their neighborhood. It's not because they don't like meatballs - it's because of the closing time and accompanying beverages.

While the Meatball Shop considers itself a restaurant above all else, residents are concerned about the selling of alcoholic beverages and a 4 a.m. closing time. Upper East Siders are concerned that the blend will result in loud drunken debauchery that will disturb the peace on Second Avenue.

Community Board 8 did approve the restaurant's SLA application after management conceded to a compromise. The Meatball Shop agreed to stop serving liquor at 2 a.m. and to have a security officer on the premises from midnight until close at 4 a.m. Still, some locals are not convinced that the meatball mecca won't cause disruption.

"I think that having another venue like this is the wrong idea for this neighborhood," said CB 8 member Nico Minerva. "The owner has his other locations stay open til 4 a.m He's willing to stop serving liquor at 2, but I still feel it's not the best place for a venue like this."

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