Buzz on Business: Town Council Approves 3 New Eateries

by | May 2, 2024

Above: Seven Stars Bakery on Cliff Street is due to open by mid-May.

Blackstone, Seven Stars & Playa Bowls

At least three new businesses will be opening their doors in East Greenwich in the coming months, including a high-end steakhouse, a quick-stop fruit bowl and smoothie joint, and a comfy cafe and bakery. 

For the most part, the Town Council approved the applications without issue on Monday, though some councilors expressed reservations about the increasing number of liquor licenses in town. 

This was because the council needed to vote to lift the liquor license cap because of an application by Blackstone EG, a tapas-style steakhouse opening up at 241 Main Street (formerly Downtown Tilly). Gian Ranucci and Anthony Domato introduced the business to the council, describing it as “upscale.” In addition to operating as a steakhouse in the evening, it will operate as a cafe during the day. 

Ranucci owns Blackstone Herbs and Martini Bar, which has locations in Coventry and Worcester, Mass., specializing in CBD-infused drinks. Ranucci and his wife own a 10-acre hemp farm in Massachusetts that supplies the CBD for these products. 

They say CBD products and CBD-infused drinks may be available at the East Greenwich location, but this time, they’re focused on the food, saying they’re excited to be the town’s first dedicated steakhouse.  

Some council members, referring to recent incident with some bars and restaurants on Main Street, appeared hesitant. Councilor Englehart said she was “concerned about the amount of liquor licenses we have in this town.” 

However, Ranucci and Domato assured the council repeatedly that they would be closing at 11 p.m. and that they “don’t want to be part of that crowd.” In the end, the council voted 4-0 to approve the license pending the business meeting all of its other legal obligations. Councilor Mike Donegan was absent. 

To accommodate the new license, the council also voted to amend town code to increase the cap on total liquor licenses in the Town of East Greenwich from 38 to 39. Councilor Englehart again suggested that the Council consider measures to limit these licenses in the future. 

Blackstone owner Ranuuci said they were “shooting for June” to open.

The two remaining businesses, which will not be serving alcohol, were Playa Bowls and Seven Stars Bakery. The council approved victualling licenses for both businesses pending their completion of any remaining legal requirements. 

Playa Bowls is a New Jersey chain specializing in fruit bowls and smoothies. It will be the first Playa Bowls location in Rhode Island, and it will be located in the Dave’s Marketplace Plaza at 1000 Division St. 

Seven Stars Bakery, the popular Rhode Island chain started in Providence in 2001, already has six locations in Rhode Island. The new location, at 50 Cliff St., is expected to open by mid-May.

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Jim
Jim
May 4, 2024 8:19 am

“They say CBD products and CBD-infused drinks may be available at the East Greenwich location, but this time, they’re focused on the food, saying they’re excited to be the town’s first dedicated steakhouse”. I don’t believe it. The people that own this business have a hemp farm. I’m sure they are just saying they won’t focus on CBD just to get the permit. Over time they will change and bring more CBD focus. Too bad the town coincil couldn’t see this. We don’t need more bars in downtown and certainly not a restaurant who’s owner have a hemp farm and focus on CBD. Ultimately the council must decide what type of town they want East Greenwich to be. Many business will try to move to move the town away from its current atmosphere. They will bring more bars and future requests for dispensaries. It will be overcome and East Greenwich will no longer have the safe feel it does today.

Mark Thompson
Mark Thompson
May 5, 2024 2:26 pm

“To accommodate the new license, the council also voted to amend town code to increase the cap on total liquor licenses in the Town of East Greenwich from 38 to 39.”

— EG News, May 2, 2024

“Liquor licenses to be frozen at 22 (maybe)!”

— RI Pendulum, January 17, 1979

Elizabeth McNamara
Admin
May 5, 2024 2:50 pm
Reply to  Mark Thompson

Thanks for digging that up for me!

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