EAST VILLAGE — It's a weekly tradition that makes every so-called "Sunday Funday" complete.
Brunch, in most cases, has become the most important meal of the day on the weekends here in the East Village.
Some restaurants offer what they call "bottomless brunch" where for one flat fee, patrons get a meal with unlimited alcohol.
While the deal has scored points with some, not everyone is sold.
One longtime East Village resident is calling on the state’s Liquor Authority to end the "bottomless" madness.
Attorney Robert Halpern tells online blog The Real Deal, these unlimited drink specials are illegal due to a provision against selling "unlimited alcohol for a set time and a set price."
Halpern also claims these boozy brunches are contributing to the "deterioration of the neighborhood," saying it prompts unnecessary rowdiness from patrons.
He wants the Liquor Authority to stop issuing liquor licenses.
Residents we spoke to couldn’t disagree more.
“You know I see a lot of these businesses and restaurants close all the time,” Casey Kelbaugh, an East Village resident for the past 14 years, told PIX11 News. “I don’t think I’m up for creating more restrictions for their success.”
Despite fielding numerous complaints about the boozy brunches, District Manager for Community Board 3 Susan Stetzer says the businesses aren't violating SLA guidelines.
“It had been explained to me by the SLA if food is involved, it is not a limited drink special,” she explained.
Adding food to the equation, like the menu at Poco Restaurant Bar on Avenue B does, changes the classification of what is being offered.
Essentially, it will be a tough case to argue.
In the meantime, East Village residents Roman Albenque and Joseph Castillo say they will continue to enjoy brunch, regardless of the haters.
“I mean it’s the East Village, it’s the most upcoming neighborhood in Manhattan,” Albenque said. “If you’re not happy with the alcohol usage in this neighborhood – maybe its time to move out.”AlertMe