Five Liquor Stores Coming Soon to Needham

Five stores approved by Board of Selectlmen--approved unanimously, one in a 3-1 decision.


If you need a nice bottle of wine, there are five places in Needham which will soon be able to oblige. 

At last night's Board of Selectmen meeting, the Board discussed all ten of the applications they received and voted on them. At a previous meeting, Selectmen vice-chair Daniel Matthews said that the Board has, "no intention of issuing all six in first round."

The Board issued five of them last night. 

Needham Wine & Spirits

1257 Highland Avenue, Manager Michael O'Connell

"This was a good example of a well thought-out package store in this location," Selectman Maurice Handel commented. "It would support other businesses in the plaza." 

The application was unanimously approved.

Volante Farms, Inc.

292 Forest Street. Manager Dave Volante

The local farm stand is looking to add about 300 square-feet of retail alcohol to their operation, officials said. Volante Farms feel they aim to use the liquor license as an accessory use--the main business will still be produce.

"This is the kind of business that the voters are interested in seeing," Selectman Daniel Matthews commented. 

The application was approved unanimously.

Needham Center Wine & Spirits

1013 Great Plain Avenue. Manager Christopher Lianos

"This was the only application in Downtown Needham, which is important to support." Selectman John Bulian spoke of the convenience factor of the application.

Selectman Matthew Borrelli said that, when the application was exactly the type of thing they were looking for when seeking applications. 

The application was unanimously approved, although the manager will receive a letter requestion they consult the Chief of Police about the cooler.


922 Highland Avenue. Manager Raphael Keller-Go

Selectmen said they had visited the location in Brookline, and liked the concept and presentation of the store. 

"I think they deserve an opp to get started in this," Selectman Daniel Matthews noted. 

Selectmen unanimously approved the store on the condition that it be limited to a 1000 square-foot retail space. 

Bin Ends

65 Crawford Street. Manager John Hafferty

"We promised Needham that we would go slow. Going slow means not presenting people with a wall of change," Selectman Maurice Handel commented.

He added that the Board could issue a fifth license to Bin Ends without creating that wall of change.

However, Selectman John Bulian said he would voted the fifth approval, saying "Bin Ends is on my list--I want to be clear about that--I just can’t bring myself to five."

He noted that he had chosen six of the applicants he would vote in favor of, but only intended to approve between two and four of those applications. 

Ultimately, Bin Ends was approved in a 3-1 vote. 


The town accepted applications for the town's liquor licenses from . The Selectmen held a meeting on Saturday, which officials estimate had about 200 attendees, to discuss the ten applications. 

With approval of the November ballot question, Needham has the ability to issue up to six licenses for the retail sale of beer, wine and liquor in town, with two additional wine and beer licenses available after 2018, for a total of eight.


The ten applicants. Approved applications listed in bold: 

  • 1257 Highland Avenue, Needham Wine & Spirits, Michael O'Connell
  • 292 Forest Street, Volante Farms, Inc., Dave Volante
  • 1013 Great Plain Avenue, Needham Center Wine & Spirits, Christopher Lianos
  • 922-932 Great Plain Avenue, Craft Liquors, Edward Spivak
  • 679 Highland Avenue, Blanchards Wines & Spirits, Christine Elder
  • 922 Highland Avenue, Vinodivino, Raphael Keller-Go
  • 855 Highland Avenue, Gordon's Fine Wines & Liquors, David Gordon
  • 33 Highland Avenue, Highland Ave Wine & Spirits, Marc Idelson
  • 65 Crawford Street, Bin Ends, John Hafferty (3-1 vote.)
  • 50 Central Avenue, Panella's Market & Deli, Jeffrey Panella
Daniel February 06, 2013 at 01:03 PM
What happened with Craft Liquor? This appeared to be a very nice concept.


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