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Onion Town Grill Will Stop Pouring Drinks for 3 Days This Week

The Danvers eatery will be serving out a temporary suspension of its liquor license for two violations of state law this past summer.

Onion Town Grill is located at 175 Water St. in Danvers. Credit: File photo
Onion Town Grill is located at 175 Water St. in Danvers. Credit: File photo
If you're a regular at the Onion Town Grill over in Danvers, you won't be able to stop in for a drink for a few days this week. The restaurant will be serving out a three-day suspension of its liquor license and won't be pouring alcoholic drinks from Dec. 3-5.

The Danvers Board of Selectmen set those dates at its last meeting. The penalty is in light of two violations of state liquor laws uncovered by state licensing officials this past June.

The Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission actually decided to hold a five-day suspension in abeyance, but Danvers selectmen already had a similar agreement in place over a previous violation at the restaurant.

The recent infractions occurred within the year-long probationary period the board had set and therefore the three-day suspension was enforced.

Donald Harwood, co-owner of the Water Street eatery with his sister Gail Couture, appeared before selectmen Nov. 19, explaining both infractions were related to a party for a relative but made no excuses for the mistakes. He said they would willingly accept the penalty from the board.

"We offer no excuses for the foolish decision that we made. I take full responsibility for our actions," Harwood said.

Selectman Bill Clark called the recent violations "egregious" and the first time he could recall two violations within a year at one establishment.

"This is serious and we don't want to tolerate it in Danvers," he said, adding he would vote to revoke the license altogether if a third violation occurs. Other board members indicated they would support that vote.

The two violations involved the restaurant purchasing alcohol in New Hampshire and from local package stores, which violates a stipulation that all purchases be made with licensed in-state distributors, and that staff refilled liquor bottles, which also violates state liquor law.

The restaurant will turn over its all-alcohol license at the police station after closing on Dec. 2 and pick it up again the morning of Dec. 6.  In the meantime, Harwood said, staff will be tasked with cleaning and reorganizing inventory.

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