Specialty Restaurant Group II LLC has acquired multiple restaurant and brewery brands from Craftworks Holdings, which filed for bankruptcy in March. In Chattanooga, these include long-established businesses: two Big River Grille & Brewing Works, two locations of Old Chicago Pizza & Taproom and two Logan’s Roadhouse restaurants. As the restaurants open under the new owner, new beer licenses will be needed because of the change.
A new beer permit requires inspections from the health department, the fire department and building inspector.
With multiple locations for each brand, some have already passed all inspections and some approvals are pending. Attorney Tayo Atanda, representing all of the restaurants in question, specializes in alcohol and beverage law with the firm Waller, Lansden, Dortch and Davis. He came to the Chattanooga Beer Board meeting Thursday morning asking for approval of applications for all 10 businesses despite the fact that some issues identified by the building inspector have not yet been corrected. He assured the board that any issues would be taken care of. He said the permits are needed because professional training, that is now required for beer sales, has been scheduled to start by Sept. 29 so that beer sales can stat on Oct. 6.
“The precedent is that we don’t issue a beer license unless all inspections are complete,” said Board Member Ron Smith. He said that training can be done before a license is received. The board agreed that approving a license before having all the documentation in line would set a precedent that they do not want to start.
Applications that were before the board on Thursday include Big River Grille & Brewing Works, 222 Broad St. in downtown Chattanooga. That location was approved for a Manufacturer’s/Distributor’s permit as well as a Consumer Carry out license. Their request to also have a Caterer’s license was put on hold because a business must have a license from the Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission before a caterer’s license can be given by the beer board. A consumer license was also approved for the 2020 Hamilton Place Blvd. location of Big River Grille.
Old Chicago Pizza & Taproom Hamilton Place, located at 2006 Hamilton Place, was approved for a consumer beer permit, but the location at 250 Northgate Mall Dr. was not given a license on Thursday because it has not yet received a certificate from the building codes inspector.
The third restaurant brand involved in the bankruptcy sale is Logan’s Roadhouse. The restaurant at 3592 Cummings Hwy. in Lookout Valley has passed all inspections and was approved for a consumer beer license. The restaurant located at 504 Northgate Mall Dr. still has not passed the building inspection so this application was passed to a future meeting.