Table Talk | $1.7 mil for a liquor license?

Do I hear $1.7 million?

The partners of Swanky Bubbles paid $1.6 million for their liquor license as they took over the former Olive on Evesham Road in Cherry Hill. This may be an all-time U.S. record, if lawyers who watch such issues are correct.

Also significant is that Swanky Bubbles is not some deep-pocketed chain. Besides the Cherry Hill operation, the partnership has a Swanky Bubbles in Old City and Macs in Somers Point, N.J.

The license held by Brio Tuscan Grille, an Ohio-based Italian chain that opened this week at the old Garden State Park site, cost $1.5 million.

Licenses in Pennsylvania and New Jersey are sold on the open market, subject to supply and demand.

Top prices in Philadelphia are about $70,000, while the most anyone can recall paying for one in the Pennsylvania counties is $350,000.


What's coming

La Golosa - that's Italian for "the glutton" - is taking shape at 806 S. Sixth St. in Bella Vista, the former home of Dessert. Florence-born Favio Scarpelli envisions it as a cafe for the afternoon and evening crowd, opening in early October. It's a scone's throw from Cochon, the French BYO coming to the former Cafe Sud at 801 E. Passyunk Ave. Co-owner Gene Giuffi is hoping for a Sept. 21 debut.


Briefly noted

La Colombe has opened a cafe in New York's TriBeCa: 319 Church St., a block from those knockoff stores on Canal Street.

Friday Saturday Sunday, near Rittenhouse Square, is back after Aug. 3's fire. Fittingly, the first night last week featured a smoked-fish platter.

A sign at Bassett's, the sandwich shop at 15th and Locust Streets, says it's moving into the Bellevue's food court.

A new partnership: and What it means: Citysearch now displays menus collected by MenuPages.

Barely days after opening as the Seafood Shack (124 Haddon Ave., Collingswood), shingle now reads "Dockhoppers Seafood House."


Contact columnist Michael Klein at 215-854-5514 or Read his recent work at