Douglas Bacon bringin' home the restaurant in the Fenway, he swears

Serial restrepreneur Douglas Bacon told the Boston Licensing Board today he hopes to have the long shuttered Symphony 8 restaurant on Westland Avenue open for business in a few months.

It's the same thing Bacon told the board in May 2014, but he swears this time he really means it.

Bacon was hauled before the board for a hearing this morning on why the board shouldn't take away the liquor license that's lain dormant since the spring of 2013 - holders of the lucrative licenses aren't supposed to just sit on them.

Bacon, who owns six restaurants in the area, said he's been beset by ongoing issues at both Westland Avenue and his other locations.

Symphony 8 is in an old building and renovations have proven more challenging than expected - he said he's now on his third designer and his second general contractor. Still, he said, there is progress: The restaurant has a new HVAC system and a new storefront.

Bacon acknowledged some of the problems might be because he hasn't been paying as much attention to the work as he'd like - because he's had to spend a fair amount of time finding qualified managers and staff in a tough labor market for his other restaurants.

He said he is painfully aware of what Symphony 8's long hiatus means, because he's still paying rent on the space and hie's already poured $800,000 into the renovations.

He said he is now aiming to open by July 15.

The board decides Thursday whether to give Bacon yet another extension on a deadline to use the license or lose it. After hearing Bacon's explanation, board Chairwoman Christine Pulgini suggested a six-month extension.



Free tagging: 


They'd take it away

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And then award it to somebody else, so, yeah, that'd be $300,000 or so down the drain for him.

If he does bring it back, I hope he leaves Prohibited,

Symphony 8's incredibly lame take on the speakeasy concept, behind.

Hidden door? Check. Secret password (published on social media) required? Check -- for about three weeks before they gave up on that. Everything else that makes the modern speakeasy concept worthwhile, like skilled, scholarly bartenders with serious hospitality and technical chops? Not even a little. That basement dump was pitiful even by the low standards of crummy, cookie-cutter Irish-American joints in Boston.

He's full of bs

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He's full of bs

No work has been done on that building since fall 2015 (when a small sign in the window said it would open 'spring 2016'). He's had over THREE years to do something. As someone that lives in the neighborhood and sees the ugly eyesore that the bar has been for over a year, I say take his license away! He already made his promise to move things along last time...and nothing happened.

Every time I hear this dude's

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Every time I hear this dude's name I remember when he wouldn't support a Planned Parenthood fundraiser at his meh

Do we know WHICH six?

I was surprised to read this:

"Bacon, who owns six restaurants in the area..."

I, for one, have never heard of the guy. For such a mogul, he seems to keep a pretty low profile. Is he some kind if Bizarro-Berkowitz?

Yank it

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Take the license away. He hasn't done a stick of work in forever. His pitch to the neighborhood was a total pack of lies (about how the place wouldn't be particularly welcoming to students and all...) I live a block away. He's stuck us with this eyesore ever since he bought it. The license is supposed to serve the needs of the neighborhood and instead he's warehousing it, probably so he can use the tax loss. I say yank the license and give it to somebody who will use it.