SLA Strips Touch’s Liquor License: ‘It’s a Sad Day for Clubs’

Photo: Sunrise Winburn

After being shut down by the SLA a year ago owing to “no fewer than 19 violent fights and/or illegal activities,” it looks like Touch (for better or worse, one of the city’s last big nightclubs) is down again. Promoter Michael Cohen sent out a mass Facebook message today: “OUR PARTY ON FRIDAYS IS CANCELED, TOUCH THE NIGHTCLUB LOST ITS LIQUOR LICENSE FROM PROBLEMS LAST YEAR. REALLY SUCKS BUT WE WILL BE STARTING A NEW PARTY SOON!!!!” Andy Griggs, a 40-year nightlife vet who started as the club’s events director last April, tells us it’s all a matter of a “problematic technical legal error on our liquor license.”

“We’ve been a special events space since April of last year, so I’ve not been open to the general public,” he says. (Asked about Michael Cohen’s weekly gay party, Griggs says it was “tied to a fund-raiser” and “linked to the GMHC.”) “We needed to get this liquor license updated or renewed and the judge in this particular case had decided he didn’t really understand whether we were a nightclub or a special events space, so he said, guess what (and this all took about a minute and a half) let’s revoke your liquor license, or let’s suspend it — who cares about 95 jobs going out the wazoo, but that’s his decision.”

Griggs says he can continue to host product launches, fund-raisers, corporate events, casting calls, and the like so long as there aren’t any cash transactions over the bar. “It’s a sad day for clubs,” he tells us. “I don’t understand why we didn’t get a fair shake but having said that, the police department and the fire department and the SLA need to run a tight ship and do a respectful job, which is indeed what they do — so it’s unfortunate and we’re going to get our ducks in a row.”

SLA Strips Touch’s Liquor License: ‘It’s a Sad Day for