A downtown doughnut shop is asking the city for special permission to add beer and wine to its menu, as the owners consider long-term plans that could include staying open 24 hours a day.
Glazed Donuts, 420 Eaton St., opened almost eight months ago with promises of supplying "gourmet" doughnuts in Old Town, and in an application package to the city, now wants to add alcoholic beverages to "accessorize" its baked goods.
But because it is located within 300 feet of St. Paul's Episcopal Church on Duval Street, the shop needs the city's Planning Board to grant a special exception before owners Jon and Megan Pidgeon may apply to the state for a beer and wine license.
Members of the city's Development Review Committee, made up of city staff including Planner Don Craig, will discuss the request at its 10 a.m. Friday meeting at Old City Hall, but the DRC panel has no approval power. That's up to the Planning Board, a volunteer group appointed by city commissioners.
The Pidgeons, both trained at the Culinary Institute of America, have no plans to turn the shop into a bar or nightclub, their attorney Alan Fowler said in the application.
"Glazed Donuts seeks to accessorize their gourmet donut menu with specialty beer and wine-based drinks, such as mimosas, bellinis and seasonal craft beer, that accessorize the flavor profiles of their donuts, much as it does with coffee-based drinks," Fowler wrote as part of a 25-page application dated Nov. 28.
Glazed Donuts is open from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. now, but those hours could expand to meet the demand, Fowler wrote. The Pidgeons estimate that the shop has produced at least 34,000 doughnuts and pastries and rung up some 12,600 sales transactions since opening.
St. Paul's church and other next-door neighbors, such as a guest house, Sippin' Internet Cafe, and a Subway fast food eatery, have given Glazed Donuts their blessings in writing for the alcohol sales.
So has Tropic Cinema, which already sells beer and wine, but only if the doughnut shop agrees not to sell alcohol past 11 p.m. and keeps the beer and wine from leaving the premises, according to a letter and email attached to the application.
"Off-premise sales" of alcohol would draw a "questionable element," wrote Tropic Executive Director Matthew Helmerich in a Nov. 16 letter to Fowler.
The statue that depicts Marilyn Monroe in the iconic skirt billowing scene from 1955s "The Seven Year Itch," has been defaced, along with the Tropic's street-front poster cases.
In response, Fowler says that the doughnut shop's presence could deter any would-be vandals.
Helmerich added that the theater's alcohol sales are "linked to our primary business purpose," and they stop serving at 11 p.m. when the shows end.