Pasquini's on 17th goes for cabaret license today

So far, much of the talk about the Pasquini's Pizzeria that opened on East 17th Avenue in early November has focused on the new paint-job outside. Today, the discussion will move indoors, when Pasquini's applies to the city for a cabaret license, which would allow the venue to offer live entertainment in addition to food and drink.

While people might debate the merits of outdoor murals, most would agree that this town could always use good options for live entertainment.

See also: - Photos: A look at Pasquini's on 17th Avenue - Reader: People who bitch about Pasquini's art want to make everything match their personal aesthetic

And so today, supporters should be out in force at the Department of Excise and Licenses in the Wellington E. Webb building, where the Pasquini's application for a cabaret license is set for a 1:30 p.m. hearing.

Owner Tony Pasquini has had good luck with live music at his Highland store, and he thinks it will work well in Uptown -- where there's much more space, particularly in the expansive, lounge-like second floor. "We want to recreate the neighborhood gathering place feel that we've created in Highland," he says. "We're a neighborhood business, and we need to meet the needs of the neighborhood in every respect."

And that means featuring acts that will be an asset to the area. "For the music we have a lot of different ideas we're working on," Pasquini continues. "It could be DJs playing parents' kind of basement music -- '70s and '80s, Donny and Marie or Nirvana, depending."

As for his parents, Judy "Mama" Pasquini, the family matriarch, was there when Tony opened his first store on South Broadway back in 1986, and she was there when he opened the doors of the new Pasquini's at 777 East 17th Avenue two weeks ago, marking a return to 17th for his concept. "Regulars are coming in, and they're so happy we've reopened," Tony says.

As for that paint job? "Most people are happy with it," he says. "We're about expressing ourselves, and hey, our restaurant on South Broadway was pink back in 1986, then I painted it purple in the '90s. Here, we have pink and purple with flowers."

And soon, maybe live music, too.

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