Brighton roast joint seeks drinks licence

A new takeaway selling rotisserie chicken and roast dinners has applied for a licence to sell craft beers and wines with its food orders.

But owners Glen Halsey and Michael Matthews said that they would only sell drinks to customers at their new business, Roasthost, in Dyke Road, Brighton.

They told a Brighton and Hove City Council licensing panel at Hove Town Hall that they would not include alcohol with orders for delivery.

The pair are taking on the premises previously occupied by the Dodo fish and chip shop, with the entrance in Bath Street.

The council’s licensing department objected to their application to sell alcohol from noon until 9pm from Wednesday to Saturday and until 7pm on Sundays.

The pair said that they were a food-led business and Mr Halsey added: “We will be very stringent on who we sell to. There will be online ordering through Just Eat and our own website and the food will be delivered without alcohol.

“Alcohol is for collection only. That way we can verify the age limit and that’s the whole idea to be stringent.”

Both Mr Halsey and Mr Matthews are experienced personal licence holders.

Mr Halsey told the licensing panel on Friday (17 January) he had spent many years working in various businesses in London and latterly in golf clubs.

Mr Matthews said that a bottle of wine from the takeaway would probably be in the £20 range so they would not be in competition with local off-licences.

Councillors wanted reassurance that anyone buying alcohol would have a “substantial” amount of food to take away.

Mr Matthews said that they would be selling rotisserie chicken with roast potatoes and sides dishes such as coleslaw during the week and full roast dinners on a Sunday, with vegetables and Yorkshire puddings.

He said: “This is for someone who can come and pick up a full roast dinner without spending four hours making it on a Sunday.

“All the the food is substantial. The sale of alcohol would need to be with a substantial, not just a portion of something and get a bottle of wine.”

The old Dodo fish and chip shop

Labour councillor Jackie O’Quinn, who chaired the licensing panel, said: “Alcohol is so much better when people eat sensibly. That would allay many of our concerns.”

She asked about litter and suggested a condition on any future licence that the street outside would be kept clean and tidy.

Conservative councillor Dee Simson asked for clear signs so that customers would know that alcohol would only be sold with a substantial food order.

Green councillor Marianna Ebel asked about seating but was told that the premises were too small.

The panel retired to make its decision which is expected to be available within five working days.

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