Licensing decision pending for Great Taste following hearing

Photo: Linda Robertson
Great Taste restaurant. Photo: Linda Robertson
A Dunedin buffet restaurant that admitted selling alcohol without permission has made another pitch for a licence to start selling liquor legitimately.

Great Taste, in St Andrew St, turned down for temporary authority to sell alcohol after a hearing in July, presented its case on Friday for an on-licence.

Restaurant manager Mia Ding read a statement on behalf of director Lisa Deqin Wang at a district licensing hearing.

"They admit they made a serious mistake," she said.

"They learned a big lesson.

"Please give them one more chance."

The proceedings were relayed to Ms Wang through an interpreter.

Police and licensing inspector Tony Mole opposed the licence application, however he said

the restaurant’s clientele did not appear to have a strong match with excessive drinking.

He had confidence in Ms Ding to run the type of establishment Great Taste was.

Sergeant Ian Paulin said it had never been a problem premises for police.

Ms Wang told the committee in July she forgot to complete the necessary paperwork to get temporary authority to sell alcohol after taking over the business last year.

A slightly different explanation was offered via Ms Ding yesterday.

Ms Wang was part of a business that obtained temporary authority to sell liquor in 2015, but was not herself familiar with the procedure.

For Great Taste, she had not understood she needed a new licence and was led to believe this had been taken care of.

Committee members questioned Ms Ding about the extent of her experience, the business’ host responsibility policy and planned staff training.

They retired to consider if the on-licence should be granted.

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