Metro, Food, Top Story

Following Sale Of Lease, Roggie’s To Close After 21 Years In Service

Roggie’s Brew and Grille will soon be permanently closed, and a new pizza joint will take over its space on Chestnut Hill Ave. After working six months to obtain the building lease from the longtime staple in Brighton, Mass., Agoro’s Pizza Bar and Grill plans to open in January 2016.

Brothers Dimitrios and Nicholas Liakos own Agoro’s in Somerset, Mass., and said they will open a second location just down the road from Boston College’s campus sometime in the next few months. Dimitrios Laikos explained that Agoro’s purchased the space currently occupied by Roggie’s, and is now waiting for the Boston Licensing Board to approve a liquor license before Agoro’s can officially move in. It is not clear when the City will approve the license, but a decision could be made any time in the immediate future—ranging from next week to three months from now. Roggie’s owner John Rogaris confirmed the deal, but would not comment on any other matters at this time.

Both Liakos brothers have always wanted to expand to Boston, and when they heard from a friend of a friend that the site of Roggie’s might be an option, they quickly purchased the lease.

“We weren’t directly looking at [Roggie’s],” Dimitrios Liakos said. “It just kind of fell upon us.”

Agoro’s will occupy a similar setup to that of Roggie’s, offering pizza by the slice on one side of the restaurant—where Roggie’s Pizzeria is now—and a full sports bar and grill next door. Agoro’s specializes in Greek-style pan pizza, but also offers a variety of menu options including chicken, steak, seafood, and pasta. Liakos explained that his new restaurant will deliver pizzas, pastas, and sandwiches until 3 a.m., and the pending liquor license would allow Agoro’s to serve alcohol until 1 a.m.


“We are bringing a family restaurant and sports bar back to life in Brighton.”


Last week, the Liakos brothers presented their restaurant to the Brighton Allston Improvement Association at a neighborhood meeting. With 20 different types of pizza in hand, the brothers spoke with various neighbors and members of the Boston Police Department about Agoro’s, hoping to get the association’s support for their pending liquor license. The Boston Licensing Board has recently taken the initiative to crack down on underage drinking across the city—an effort which includes the recent sactions on nearby Mary Ann’s bar—and many association members voiced concerns about possible underage drinking at Agoro’s, especially since the restaurant is in such close proximity to BC. Liakos explained that he would be willing to install security cameras to ensure public safety.

“I’m all for having high-quality, high-def recording devices,” he said. “We want people to walk in here and feel safe and comfortable.”

The future of Roggie’s has been in jeopardy ever since an incident involving a customer falling down the stairs of the Chestnut Hill Ave. bar in 2014. Owner John Rogaris was accused of misleading the police following the incident. He is currently pleading not guilty to these charges. Roggie’s Brew and Grille had been a popular destination for BC students since opening in 1994, and offered a number of well-attended weekly events like trivia and karaoke.

Despite closing the bar and grill aspect of the restaurant shortly after the incident, Roggie’s Pizzeria has continued to operate as a pizzeria. While it is unclear when Roggie’s will end its operations, Liakos said once Agoro’s gets the liquor license, he plans to move into the establishment as soon as possible in order to be ready for his set goal of a Jan. 2016 opening.

Looking forward, Liakos explained that Agoro’s has obtained a 20-year lease and plans to be in the neighborhood for the long haul. The brothers are currently working with local neighbors and police to hear all of their concerns before opening, but their main focus is to establish Agoro’s as a family-friendly business that will be in the local neighborhood for many years to come.

“We’re family guys,” Liakos said. “And we are bringing a family restaurant and sports bar back to life in Brighton.”

Featured Image by Bennet Johnson / Heights Editor

October 13, 2015