The Otherside Cafe, which shut at the end of April, is negotiating a lease on space in the South End, its manager told the Boston Licensing Board this morning. But whether it re-opens as a vegetarian restaurant and beer bar remains an open question.
Daniel Lanigan told the board he hopes to have a lease in place within four to six weeks; he asked the board to give the Otherside up to six months to complete negotiations and then renovate the space into a new restaurant. Technically, the board does not allow holders of increasingly valuable liquor licenses to just sit on them, but in practical terms, it typically gives existing license holders time - in some cases two or more years - to reopen, move to a new location or find a buyer.
After the hearing, Lanigan declined to say exactly where in the South End the new location is, because of the lease negotiations. He added that exactly what the new restaurant would serve up would depend in part on talks with nearby residents on just what they'd like to see in the space.
The Otherside closed after 20 years on "the other side" of Newbury Street when its landlord declined to extend its lease.