Patachou owner’s pizzeria granted alcohol permit

Café Patachou owner Martha Hoover’s plan to open a pizzeria next to her trademark eatery at 49th and Pennsylvania streets in Indianapolis cleared its final hurdle Monday.

The Marion County Alcoholic Beverage Board granted her new venture, called Napolese, a permit to serve beer and wine, despite objections from opponents of the project.

Approval of the alcohol permit follows a unanimous vote late last month by the Board of Zoning Appeals to grant zoning variances Hoover had sought to accommodate her plans.

She needed the variances to include an outdoor seating area for her pizzeria and because the plans include fewer on-site parking spaces than typically required. 

Dozens of residents of the Meridian-Kessler neighborhood welcome the project they said will bring much needed economic development to the corner.

Hoover is leasing 1,200 square feet next to her original Cafe Patachou restaurant from the new owners of the Hamaker Building. The local investors, led by Bryan Chandler of Eclipse Real Estate and Greg Rankin and John Bales of Venture Cos., paid $1.5 million in December for the 12,000-square-foot building.
The group bought the building from Judith C. Kaczmarski and her husband, George, who owned the former Hamaker Pharmacy.

But a handful of opponents voiced reservations that the pizzeria and outdoor seating area would lead to increased traffic in the neighborhood, posing safety concerns.

“We remonstrators will hope, as we were told, that the ownership of Patachou are responsible people and will do their best to be good neighbors,” opponent Clark Kahlo said in an e-mail. “Yet only some things are within their span of control.  They’ll not be able to control the behavior and actions of their customers or other passers-by. And accidents do happen, with or without alcohol.”

Hoover assured neighbors that the concerns are unfounded.

“We are not opening a Broad Ripple-type bar,” she said. “We’re really a responsible tenant. We understand we’re in a neighborhood.”

Napolese should open by early February and will feature traditional, Neapolitan-style pizza. Neapolitan-style pizza originated in Naples, Italy, and is distinguishable from other types by its bread-like crust and unique texture.

Hoover’s Napolese would be the second restaurant she’s opened within a year. In March, she launched her second French-themed Petite Chou, at the upscale Clay Terrace shopping center in Carmel. The other is on Westfield Boulevard in Broad Ripple.

Hoover opened her first Cafe Patachou—at 49th and Pennsylvania streets—20 years ago. She has since opened four others: in Simon Property Group’s downtown headquarters, at the Indianapolis International Airport’s civic plaza, at River Crossing near 86th and Keystone Avenue, and at 126th Street and Gray Road in Carmel.

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