Gummy (but beloved) Atlantic Avenue drinking fixture Montero Bar and Grill may be history, now that owners have tentatively decided to join their neighbors and put the building up for sale.
“Everyone else on the block wants to sell, so I said O.K.,” owner Pepe Montero told the Times regarding his agreement to join the rest of the block in its bid to sell the chunk of property for $56 million.
The figure came from Brick Real Estate's Avi Adiv, who organized the seven business owners along the strip by insisting their properties, sold as a single lot, could make them very rich individuals. Each signed an agreement that they would sell upon receiving an offer of $56 million or more. It hasn't happened, but they also have the option of selling on their own for a lower price if the right deal comes along.
The bar, located at 73 Atlantic Avenue, has served as a regular drinking hole for longshoreman and workaday boozers since it opened across the street in 1939. (The original was razed by Robert Moses to make way for the BQE in 1947.)
Several longtime patrons are still firmly in denial that their favorite spot might be dooomed. “He’d never sell this place,” Matthew Mannino told the paper. “They’re going to have to take Pepe out of here in a beer box.”
But if a satisfactory offer is made, Montero's beer box coffin will be lined with gold. As another property owner who signed the contract put it: "This could be the next South Street Seaport."