Braintree officials grilled the new manager of T.G.I. Friday's this week on how she will handle a restaurant with a history of alcohol problems.
Longtime Friday's manager Denise Meyer recently transferred to the Braintree location, across from the South Shore Plaza, after overseeing operations in Plymouth and Hyannis.
Police Chief Russell Jenkins questioned Meyer about a violation at the Hyannis location eight years ago when she was manager, while Town Clerk Joe Powers asked why the Board of License Commissioners should trust she will do a better job than her predecessors, noting that Meyer will be the third manager in four years.
"I understand your hesitation," Meyer said. "I am confident in my abilities and my experience."
Meyer said she is certain her staff is now up-to-date on all safety certifications and is educated in how to avoid over-serving patrons, serving customers who arrive intoxicated, and serving those underage. She also said she would consider beefing up police details after construction is finished.
Friday's is part of the new Hyatt Place complex, which is near completion. Details are currently in place on Fridays and Saturdays, but with slower-than-average business during the week because of construction, Meyer said she would wait to consider adding more officers.
Ultimately, the board unanimously approved the company placing her as manager of record, replacing Liam Quilty-Dunn, who oversaw T.G.I. Friday's during some of its recent troubles.
Last June, for instance, the restaurant was cleared of wrongdoing by the board after an alleged drunken driving accident in its parking lot. Officials could not prove that the patron was overserved at Friday's, though Powers said at the time he thought there was a strong possibility the man had been over-served and that he didnt' "get the sense that management takes its obligation seriously."
In January 2011, the board decided that T.G.I. Friday's did not violate the terms of its alcohol license at the conclusion of a two-day, six-hour hearing involving an incident the previous December in which a New Hampshire man was found drunk and urinating outside the restaurant.
In addition, on March 23, 2010, Friday's was found by the board to have served an intoxicated person after hours and was shut down for three days. Friday's license was also suspended for one day in 2008 after the restaurant was found to have sold alcohol to an underage person.
Attorney Albert DeNapoli said Friday's is open to further discussion about adding police details. The board will likely bring the topic up again next month when the restaurant's alcohol license comes up for renewal, Powers said.