Downtown Rocky Mount business operating without alcohol license

Posted February 11, 2019 11:43 p.m. EST

— A Rocky Mount business that was supposed to be part of the effort to pump new energy into downtown has been operating without a liquor license, and therefore, should not be operating as a business, officials said.

According to the ABC State Commission, Blanche's Bistro, on Tarboro Street, does not have a liquor license. The temporary permit expired in 2017.

While Blanches Bistro wasn't on the agenda at Monday's City Council meeting, residents are concerned.

"The question is, is it just a minor offense, or is it something that drills down to a deeper level," said Sandy Roberson, a Rocky Mount resident.

On social media, Blanche's Bistro advertises parties with free drinks.

WRAL also learned that two members of the Rocky Mount City Council have links to Blanche's Bistro.

When officials were asked about the claims and the status of the business, officials said no one would be making any comments.

"I'd like to get back to a code of ethics," said Mark Russell, a Rocky Mount resident.

Issues like the one involving Blanche's Bistro are at the heart of residents' issues with the city's leadership.

WRAL called the Rocky Mount Police Department to ask if Blanche's Bistro was being investigated for operating without a liquor license but have not gotten a response or a call back.