by ANTHONY CAPOTE, Editor & ROSE BRENNAN, Staff Writer
Revenue has been steadily declining for Short Stop Diner, located on the corner of W. 242nd Street and Broadway and the diner seeks to become prominent again by obtaining a full liquor license.
“The community has changed,” said Anthony Branchi, the restaurant’s attorney. “Other restaurants have opened up and revenue has fallen, so they’re looking to boost that a bit.”
Many other diners in the Bronx have gained full liquor licenses, but in the case of Short Stop, there is some hesitation due to it’s proximity to a college campus which could potentially enable underage drinkers.
“All of the service help have been instructed and they’ll be monitored to check,” Branchi said at an august meeting of Bronx Community Board’s public safety committee meeting. “Basically it is a family restaurant, so we’re not looking for someone to come in there, per se, and just drink.”
From the perspective of the students at Manhattan College, it could be more difficult to monitor underage drinkers than owner Peter Singh anticipated.
Vincent DeMauro, a sophomore at MC, said, “Realistically, in a college area it is very hard to properly maintain fake IDs.”
Sophomore Diego Miguens agreed, and suggested that the frequent presence of college students would potentially make money for the diner. “College kids is where the money’s at.”
The diner could potentially become a hub for students of drinking age. It could also appeal to underage friends of these students, like DeMauro, who might accompany the legal drinkers.
“If a cheeseburger and fries is $8, and a beer is decently priced, who is going to turn down a beer and a cheeseburger?” DeMauro said.
For thirty years, Short Stop has been a community landmark, particularly for students at the college. Frequent fliers Miguens and DeMauro estimated they ate at Short Stop every other weekend since arriving at MC last fall. Miguens cited the diner as one of the first off-campus dining venues he visited, along with Best Deli of West 242nd Street.
“The convenience, as far as where it is, how much it costs, and the fact that it’s open 24 hours,” Branchi said. “If I’m doing work and it’s 4:30 in the morning and I’m hungry, I don’t want to eat pretzels all the time. I can go get a cheeseburger instead.”
In order to gain said license, Short Stop will have to close at 2 A.M. for the probationary period of one year, as opposed to remaining open 24 hours a day.
The potential new limit on Short Stop’s operation could counteract the diner’s attempts to attract more customers, especially if those customers are college students.
“I usually don’t go there until 3:30 or 4 in the morning,” said Miguens. “If they close early, I’m probably going to be too busy to go.”