“I don’t want anybody to forget about this at that meeting,” Macklin said.
The license recently became available after the town and state reconciled records regarding available liquor licenses in town, according to Jennifer Breaker, the town manager’s assistant. Apparently, state records showed that one of the town’s wine and malt licenses was tied up by Cafe Zabaglione, which had switched its license to all-alcohol a number of years ago, Breaker said.
Cafe Zabaglione has since closed and is now SALT Kitchen and Rum Bar, which was granted the cafe’s all-alcohol license. Breaker said the town and state recently came to an agreement that the wine and malt license should be made available to a business. All interested business owners were able to apply for the license, she said.
Macklin received permission to open his restaurant from the Zoning Board of the Appeals in September.
Stone Soup opened at the same Mitchell Road location in 1993 before moving to the corner of Central and Market streets. In 2009, the restaurant moved into the building formerly occupied by Marco Polo restaurant on High Street until it closed last month.
“Our intent is to run a small restaurant, similar to the restaurant (Stone Soup) that my wife and I ran from 1993 to 2001,” Macklin wrote in his ZBA application. “We will be mainly a burger and sandwich shop with hours of operation being 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday.”
Macklin told the board that the restaurant will have 12 seats and focus mostly on takeout. He said the new restaurant will have a similar setup to Stone Soup.
The owners of The Farm Bar & Grille in Essex plan to transform the former Stone Soup building into an upscale Mexican restaurant under a different name, according to Ryan Cox, co-owner.