A gospel group with deep New Haven roots, The Monk Family Singers, will be the first singers to perform at Sandra and Miguel Pittman’s proposed new restaurant on Davenport Avenue.

Tuesday night at the 200 Orange St.t hearing room, the owner of the famed Sandra’s Next Generation soul food restaurant received approval from the Board of Zoning Appeals (BZA) to have live music in an already approved plan to move the Congress Avenue business to a new 300-seat space on Davenport Street.

The board voted unanimously for a special exception to allow live music and other entertainment. The exception was required because the proposed restaurant, on a combined five-parcel site on Davenport Avenue just east of Kossuth Street, is in a residentially zoned neighborhood.

The zoners approved the request with conditions. They wanted to be sure Miguel Pittman, who presented the proposal request, was acknowledging the conditions before a formal vote was taken.

“Did you look at the report?” BZA Chair Mildred Melendez queried Pittman.

That report indicated approval as long as the hours of operation, including the music, end by 11 p.m.

“Yes,” Pittman replied.

“You realize that includes weekends?”

Pittman confirmed that he understood. He also added that he is proud that the restaurant will be selecting performers in what Pittman called “a continuation of New Haven’s music tradition.”

By that he said he meant the offerings would be largely gospel. “But other types may be presented as well,” he added.

With no speakers for or against from the public, the zoners, without further discussion,  voted unanimously to approve the request.

In the corridor outside the hearing room, Pittman consulted with some friends and confirmed the first group he would seek to present will be The Monk Family Singers. The family, which included the late jazz pianist Theolonius Monk, moved to New Haven from North Carolina in 1955 and has been performing and parading here since.

posted by: THREEFIFTHS on November 13, 2019  2:45pm

Mr.Pittman is a good Brother.