The View Grill, since 2013, has served as a gathering place for Glen Covers. (Photo courtesy GSM Communications)

New Vendor To Replace The View Grill At Glen Cove Golf Course

For months, the Glen Cove community has been rallying around The View Grill, a popular restaurant and gathering place at the Glen Cove City Golf Course, as the City of Glen Cove considered other vendors to take the spot. At the City Council meeting on Nov. 14, the Glen Cove City Council voted in favor of awarding KVM Food Corp. with a license to operate the restaurant at the Glen Cove City Golf Course. KVM Food Corp is owned by Kent Monkan, who owns The Brass Rail in Locust Valley.
The View Grill has been at the Glen Cove City Golf Course since 2013, and the owner and chef of the restaurant, Jeanine DiMenna’s term expires in February. According to a statement made by Mayor Pam Panzenbeck in August, municipal law requires an RFP (Request for Proposal) be issued. DiMenna, as well as any new applicants, were encouraged to respond with ideas to enhance scenic value and to improve catering capabilities.
Since August, Glen Cove residents have been expressing their support for The View Grill during public hearings at Glen Cove City Council meetings and signing an online petition titled “Save The View Grill!”
“It is not just a restaurant; it is a gathering place where friends and families come together to create lasting memories,” Patrick Kern, who started the petition, wrote. “Chef Jeanine’s warm hospitality and delicious culinary creations have made The View Grill an integral part of our community’s fabric. Beyond being an exceptional chef, Chef Jeanine has consistently demonstrated her commitment to helping those in need within our community.”
With the end of an era at the Glen Cove Golf Course near, DiMenna announced on Facebook that “we have a new spot coming soon.”
“This year, I am more grateful than ever because of the love and support that I have been shown by everyone in this community over the past six months,” DiMenna wrote. “The acts of kindness that I have experienced cannot be measured and I am well aware that I’ve been given a gift that cannot be bought, a gift that is so much better than any material one I could have received.”
At the well attended City Council meeting on Nov. 14, officials expressed their thoughts as they voted on that meeting’s resolutions.
“I want to say, for the record, I advocated for the current tenant, Jeanine, at the View Grill, that her lease should have been extended… if for no other reason but due to COVID when so many businesses were hurt” said Councilwoman Barbara Peebles. “I obviously did not succeed in convincing anyone else to advocate for that extension. That said… I have complete confidence in the committee that was selected and worked really hard on a tough situation… I have a lot of confidence and I feel compelled due to my responsibility for the fiscal welfare of the taxpayers in the city that they made a very good recommendation to move forward.”
There are still negotiations in process, according to the meeting’s agenda.
“My vote tonight truly isn’t for or against either of the applicants,” Councilwoman Marsha Silverman said. “It’s really a reflection of the RFP process that was followed. I think most people know I am a proponent of standard operating procedures and I revised the city’s procurement policy a few years ago to enable a more objective process… We see a full room tonight and for the past few weeks. Much of the public outcry is due to failure of that process, lack of transparency, lack of accountability and it’s very unfortunate we’re in this situation.”
Silverman said that night she did not have enough information to vote in favor of moving forward with the RFP.
“On page 12 of the request for the proposals, it clearly states the committee will provide the council indicating wherein the reasons for its recommendations and selections,” Silverman said. “That did not occur.”
Councilwoman Danielle Fugazy Scagliola addressed comments made to her alleging that she was conflicted due to the golf outing she hosts there and her brother, Louis Fugazy Jr., being on the committee. She said while she had nothing to do with her brother being asked to join the committee, she wanted to abstain from voting on the RFP.
Fugazy Scagliola went on to say that at every meeting, the council accepts recommendations from the city’s purchasing agent, Yelena Quiles.
“She did make this recommendation,” Fugazy Scagliola said. “I have not lost any faith in our purchasing agent for the job she’s done.”
That being said, Fugazy Scagliola said she believed the RFP was written in a way to make it more difficult for a smaller proprietor to compete.
“I think we will be hard pressed to find anyone who cares about the community the way Jeanine has over the years,” Fugazy Scagliola said. “I think most people in this room have been at some sort of school event or a civic event that Jeanine has made happen because she is so community oriented. I think we all appreciate that about her.”
Panzenbeck said this RFP process has been difficult, but that the process was followed correctly.
Meeting attendees expressed dismay at how the council handled the process, however.
Resident Peter Budraitis alleged that the vote on the RFP was delayed until after the election so that it wouldn’t influence their campaigns. He also said the lateness of the RFP and its delivery and timeline did not give DiMenna enough lead time to plan for the new year.
“The biggest indication of how unprofessionally this was handled was when the decision was put on the agenda, not one single person had the courage of their convictions to call Jeanine up and tell her what happened and tell her you simply decided to go another direction,” Budraitis said. “She had to read about this from a [Glen Cove Neighbors] post on Facebook.”
Rachel Bueno, an employee at The View Grill, said it would have been better for herself and fellow employees to receive more notice. Silverman recommended that the negotiations with KVM Food Corp request the hiring of local employees, which Panzenbeck agreed with.
“I’ve known since the summer that you guys were already going to pick The Brass Rail people,” Bueno said. “You could say, ‘no we weren’t. We were going through a process…’ But a lot of people talk and they hear it from some of you people sitting up here. And I was actually told.”
Panzenbeck denied the claims.
“I want to thank you all for your love and support to Jeanine and The View Grill,” Patrick Kern wrote in an update on the petition. “Jeanine did not get the outcome she was truly hoping for. However, I am declaring this a victory because Jeanine is going to move on to bigger and better things. I know you all will follow her with her future endeavors. I know she appreciates each and every one of you. Again, thank you all for your love and support. Let’s not forget that Jeanine will still be at the View Grill until February. I wish the new owners the best of luck on their new venture.”

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