Green Hill Kitchen gets approval for live music in Greenport

Blues. Jazz. Country. Folk. Latin.

These genres of music are coming to the corner of Front and First streets in Greenport this summer.

Following a public hearing Thursday, the Greenport Planning Board approved an amended site plan that grants Green Hill Kitchen permission to use the second floor of its restaurant at 48 Front St. for live music and entertainment performances.

The conditional approval requires the applicant to come before the board again at its Oct. 3 meeting. Planning board chairman Walter Foote said the condition will give the community the opportunity to weigh in on the first full summer season of live music at the venue. The restaurant did host some live music events in the space last fall before being informed it needed to amend its site plan.

Community members and local musicians filled all available seats at the Third Street Fire Station, eager to express their opinions on the potential entertainment venue for Greenport.

Architect Robert Brown said the building will not be expanded. However, the second floor will provide food, drink and live entertainment.

The restaurant’s owner Christoph Mueller told the board the upstairs venue will operate Monday through Thursday from 7 to 11 p.m. and Friday and Sunday from 7 p.m. to 2 a.m. The venue will also offer comedy, theater and film performances, Mr. Mueller said, and local productions.

According to Village Administrator Paul Pallas, a building permit is not required because the unmodified space continues to meet entry and exit codes. 

Sound levels on the street, Mr. Foote said, may be a concern if windows on the second floor are open during live performances.

Mr. Pallas said the village would only measure sound levels if they received a noise complaint. The decibel level the venue needs to remain under is listed in their code requirements, he said.

Mr. Mueller said he wants to be able to advertise live music — which he feels will benefit the community. 

The audience members who spoke Thursday echoed Mr. Mueller’s sentiment. 

East End Music Alliance Founder Eric Tonyes provided the board with a list of over 60 people who wanted to attend the public hearing but were unable to.

One speaker, who said he books music for Claudio’s Clam Bar, said adding new genres of music has the potential to bring in more people to Greenport.

“Pretty much right now, our music is pretty standard,” the man said. “I think it’d be great to get a different flavor of music.”

At this time, board members said, Claudio’s is the only other venue in the incorporated village which has received approval for live music.

Michael Kontokosta, co-owner of Kontokosta Winery, said the village has a long history with live music. He recalled bringing folding chairs to Mitchell Park to hear live music with his family.

“Music can really invigorate a community and I encourage you to foster this as much as you can,” he said.

Mr. Mueller also appeared before the board Thursday for a public hearing on his new restaurant across the street from Green Hill Kitchen. Ankor will replace the former Deep Water Bar and Grille at 47 Front Street.

The restaurant, which representatives previously said will serve “high end” seafood, received approval Thursday for minor interior renovations and a new awning outside.

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