December 14, 2018

Meze to open new Shrewsbury Street restaurant in February

Photo | Zachary Comeau
Meze Greek Tapas has high hopes for this space on Shrewsbury Street.

One of Shrewsbury Street's only vacant restaurant buildings will soon be occupied by its neighbor.

Meze Greek Tapas, fresh off of obtaining alcohol and entertainment licenses from the Worcester's License Commission on Thursday, told WBJ it plans to open in a neighboring building in February.

Panos Georgiadis, whose family owns the restaurant at 156 Shrewsbury St., said work is underway to renovate the interior of the 166 Shrewsbury St. building, which has been vacant for about a year.

A large "Coming Soon" sign advertising the new restaurant currently sits in the window. Work on the awning and permanent signage will be completed within a month, Georgiadis said.

Georgaidies and his father purchased the building in September from the federal government for $525,000 after a long criminal proceeding against the building's former owner, Kevin Perry.

As part of the move, the Greek restaurant will offer a more robust, higher-quality menu complete with imported beer and wine from Greece. That includes a new name for the restaurant: Meze Estiatorio.

According to Georgiadis, at least three parties are interested in the business assets in Meze's current space, which is leased.

"It's still on the market," he said.

Perry was sentenced to 14 years in prison for selling opioids and other drugs and laundering those proceeds through the Usual restaurant in the 166 Shrewsbury St. space, which then -- under the leadership of his wife and a business partner -- became the Chameleon after he was charged in 2017.

Those two were also charged in February of using some of Perry's drug proceeds to renovate the space.

Perry and his wife, Stacey Gala, also owned the Blackstone Tap on Water Street, which is also under new ownership with a new concept planning to debut in February.

Court cases for Gala and business partner Joseph Herman are ongoing.

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