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Second Roxbury restaurant gets neighborhood-based liquor license

Dudley Square patrons will soon get another sit-down restaurant where they can dine and sip cocktails.

Suya Joint, which specializes in African cuisine, will join Dudley Cafe as a second newcomer to Roxbury’s burgeoning restaurant scene.

The Boston Licensing Board gave Suya Joint the green light at its June 25 meeting, said commissioner Christine Pulgini.

Sam Maverick’s, on Granite Avenue in Dorchester, was also granted a license. That restaurant and Suya Joint are licensed to have full bars.

“We are trying to incorporate the African cuisine with the diverse culture that Roxbury already has,’’ co-owner Cecelia Lizotte said. “With the redevelopment of Roxbury and the relaunch of Suya Joint, we’re really excited.”


The licensing board has been charged with granting 20 neighborhood-based liquor licenses in Boston over the next three years. Suya Joint and Sam Maverick’s were the last of the first batch of those neighborhood licenses. The second set of 20 licenses will be awarded beginning in September.

The licenses, established to open doors in underserved communities, are restricted to seven neighborhoods: Dorchester, East Boston, Hyde Park, Jamaica Plain, Mattapan, Mission Hill, and Roxbury. The restriction means if restaurants close, the licenses must stay put in the neighborhood where they were initially granted.

Last month, Solmon Chowdhury and his wife, Rokeya, became the first restaurateurs in Roxbury to apply for and receive one of the new licenses. The Chowdhurys own the popular Indian restaurant Shanti, with locations in Dorchester and Roslindale. They also own Moksa, which offers a pan-Asian menu in Cambridge.

Their newest establishment, Dudley Cafe, is expected to open this month in the Bruce C. Bolling Municipal Building.

Suya Joint will be at 185 Dudley St., near Warren Street. The owners are relocating from Roslindale, where the restaurant had operated the past three years.

The restaurant, which expects to open in early August, will include a dining room, takeout, and African entertainment, Lizotte said.


Representatives from Sam Maverick’s could not be reached for comment Thursday.

Meghan Irons can be reached at