It’s almost Hamptons Restaurant Week. What goes well with food? Beer! Better—local beer! The Montauk Brewing Company is trying to provide just that, but they’ve run into a few roadblocks.
Established by three East Hampton High School graduates, the Montauk Brewing Company on South Erie Avenue houses a store and tasting room, but the beer is brewed upstate. The trio—Vaughan Cutillo, Eric Moss and Joe Sullivan—are hoping to expand their facility to install brewing equipment and produce their product on site. A meeting with the planning board lead to some difficulties: With the expansion, the brewery would have to provide three additional parking spaces. The brewery does not have the room to make additional spaces, and the town is able to waive that requirement if the company pays a fee of $15,000 per spot.
Recognizing that the $45,000 would be an enormous expense for a startup, MBC appealed to the town board to let them use three spots in a municipal lot across the street—which is rarely, if ever, filled to capacity—at no additional cost.
The issue was discussed at a town board meeting last Thursday night. The board remains deadlocked on the issue, with most wanting to help the company but a few afraid of setting a dangerous precedent for granting exceptions.
It’s a sticky situation, perhaps one to consider over a tasting of Driftwood Ale. 62 South Erie Avenue—site of the next town board meeting? Enough people are rooting for these guys—there has to be some sort of win-win solution. A Kickstarter campaign?