Monday, April 30, 2012

Update: Granary Tavern Is Opening on the Greenway in Downtown Boston

[Ed note: This article was updated on May 31 to reflect a name change of the place from the Grain Exchange to Granary Tavern, as posted by Eater Boston.]

The group behind several Boston-area Irish pubs and restaurants is going to be opening a new spot along the Rose Kennedy Greenway in downtown Boston, and this one will focus on regional New England dishes.

The Boston Herald is reporting that Granary Tavern (which was originally going to be named Grain Exchange--see note above) will open at the corner of Milk Street and the Greenway, bringing to this section of the city a place that features flatbreads, shellfish, charcuterie, and "New England classics with a twist." The Glynn Hospitality Group is going to operate the new spot, adding to their list of eating and drinking establishments which includes The Black Rose, Brownstone, Clerys, Coogan's, Dillon's, Hurricane O'Reilly's, Jose McIntyre's, and The Purple Shamrock (which will be closing in September).

The Herald mention that the 250-seat dining spot is expected to open in June. [May 31 update: Eater Boston mentions that Granary Tavern could be open by June 15.]

[June 21 update: UrbanDaddy reports that Granary Tavern is going to have a soft opening today.]

The address for this new restaurant in downtown Boston is: Granary Tavern, 170 Milk Street, Boston, MA, 02109.

Thanks to Eater Boston for bringing this to our attention.


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Highlights for the Week Ending April 27, 2012

Several new stories and articles centering on the Boston-area restaurant scene came out over the past week, including an ice cream cafe possibly moving into the space where a landmark record store has been, an upcoming burger spot in Harvard Square hoping for a 4:00 AM closing, and a restaurant with an outdoor beer garden coming to Somerville. In addition, our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants) included a new review of a breakfast and lunch spot in Canton, a slideshow on burgers in the Boston area, and a photo of an old-fashioned cupcake from a bakery in Braintree.

Below are links to these and other items from the past week:

Boston Restaurant Talk

J.P. Licks May Be Moving into Looney Tunes Space in Boston's Back Bay

Back Deck to Open in Downtown Boston

Tasty Burger in Cambridge's Harvard Square Eyes 4:00 AM Closing

City Landing to Open at Long Wharf on the Boston Waterfront

Bronwyn to Open in Somerville's Union Square

Boston's Hidden Restaurants

New Review: Amber Road Cafe in Canton, MA

Photo: Onion Strings from the Fat Cat in Quincy, MA

New Slideshow: Eight Good Burgers in the Boston Area

Updated Review: Olympian Diner in Braintree, MA

Photo: Old-Fashioned Cupcake from Montilio's in Braintree, MA


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Yannalfo's to Open in Marblehead

It looks like a new Italian restaurant is on its way to the North Shore.

A job post on the Craigslist site indicates that Yannalfo's will be opening soon in Marblehead, and that they are currently looking for a cook and some servers. The post mentions that the eatery will have a capacity of 50, and it will be a casual spot that is open for dinner seven days a week.

No specific opening date has been given for Yannalfo's as of yet, nor is there an exact address for the place; as soon as we find out more about the restaurant, we will post an update here.

[September 13 update: The Marblehead Patch reports that Yannalfo's is now open for business. In the article, the owner of the new spot (Brett Yannalfo) says it is "a little more casual and sort of 'comfort food' Italian than what (Pellino's) was cooking."]


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Friday, April 27, 2012

Update: Jason Owens (Local 149, Biltmore) Is Opening M3 in Somerville's Davis Square

[Ed note: This article was updated on June 8 to reflect a name and address given for the restaurant. Thanks to Grub Street Boston for the updated information.]

One of the people behind two upscale comfort food spots in the Boston area is going to be opening a new dining spot in one of the busiest sections of Somerville.

Grub Street Boston reports that Jason Owens is planning to open M3, which will be an American restaurant (with a nod to Southern fare) in Davis Square. A more recent article from Grub Street (see note above) says that the Highland Avenue eatery is getting its name from the Southern tradition of "meat and three," or a main course of meat along with three side dishes. A few items that will be available at M3 include chicken and waffles, charcuterie from Virginia, oyster po'boys, pecan-crusted pork chops, and specials such as a pig's ear sandwich. The restaurant will be moving into the space where Alfresco had been until closing last month (on the eastern edge of Davis Square).

[June 8 update: M3 is planning to have a soft opening next week, according to Grub Street Boston.]

[June 15 update: Thrillist reports that M3 officially opens today. (Thanks to Eater Boston for bringing this to our attention.)]

Last month we wrote about Owens' plans to open a food market in the Fort Point section of Boston, along with the fact that he no longer is involved with Local 149 in South Boston or The Biltmore in Newton, two restaurants that he helped run.

The address for this new restaurant in Davis Square is: M3, 382 Highland Avenue, Somerville, MA, 02144.

[Earlier Articles]
A New Restaurant Is Moving into the Alfresco Space in Somerville's Davis Square
A Food Market Is Being Planned for Boston's Fort Point Area


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J.P. Licks Is Opening on Boylston Street in Boston's Back Bay

As we reported last month, J.P. Licks has closed down its Newbury Street location after about 20 years in business. But now it appears that the ice cream cafe may be opening once again in the Back Bay, though it might be replacing a landmark record store.

The Boston Phoenix is reporting that Looney Tunes is moving out of its Boylston Street home after being there for 33 years, but it will not be going away completely; instead, it will be merging with Store 54 on Harvard Avenue in Allston to create a "music supermarket." The article goes on to say that J.P. Licks is "reportedly" moving into the space that will be vacated by the record shop.

J.P. Licks closed its location at 352 Newbury Street in early March, with a Boston Globe article stating that the ice cream place had been looking at sites on both Newbury Street and Boylston Street in the hopes that it could reopen in the Back Bay. It looks like this may indeed be coming true now.

[October 3 update: While the exact location has not yet been confirmed, the Boston Globe reports that J.P. Licks is indeed planning to open a shop on Boylston Street in the Back Bay. The Globe also reports that the ice cream chain is looking to open at the upcoming Assembly Row development in Somerville as well as in Lynnfield. (Thanks to Adam's Hospitality & Tourism Industry Blog for bringing this to our attention.)]

[October 3 update #2: The Boston Business Journal has confirmed that J.P. Licks will move into the former Looney Tunes space at 1106 Boylston Street.]

[March 28, 2013 update: Eater Boston states that the new J.P. Licks on Boylston Street is now open.]

J.P. Licks has other locations in Mission Hill, Harvard Square, Coolidge Corner, Davis Square, West Roxbury, Newton Centre, Wellesley, Dedham, and soon, in Beacon Hill [update--now open].

The address for the new location of J.P. Licks is 1106 Boylston Street, Boston MA, 02115. Their website is at http://www.jplicks.com/


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Back Deck Is Opening in Downtown Boston

A new "backyard barbecue" spot is getting ready to open in downtown Boston.

A job post from the Craigslist site indicates that Back Deck is planning a mid-May opening on West Street, bringing to Downtown Crossing a place to get charcoal grilled food, with the restaurant using three different grills--a Woodshow Broiler, a Montague Charcoal Broiler, and a Mt. St. Helens Shallow-Box Charbroiler. A few of the menu items at Back Deck include hot wings, grilled chicken livers, grilled cheese on sourdough, burgers, sausage and mashed potatoes, lamb kabobs, gumbo greens, s'mores, and a Snicker sundae.

The proprietor of Back Deck (Bradley Fredericks) is the person who founded the Fajitas & 'Ritas restaurants, while the chef/GM (Paul Sussman) worked the brick oven at Al Forno in Providence and was the owner of the now-closed Daddy-O’s in Cambridge (he more recently has been involved with The Fireplace in Brookline, Z Square in Harvard Square, and Brandy Pete's in Boston's Financial District).

[June 15 update: Back Deck is one step closer to opening, as EveryBlock Boston mentions that the place now has a business license to operate.]

[June 18 update: UrbanDaddy is reporting that Back Deck opens its doors today.]

The address for this new restaurant in downtown Boston is: Back Deck, 2 West Street, Boston, MA, 02111. Their website can be found at http://www.backdeckboston.com/


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Thursday, April 26, 2012

A New Restaurant with "an Iron Chef" May Be on Its Way to Boston's Seaport District

The person behind a restaurant in the Financial District of Boston and another dining spot in the Fenway is looking to open a new eatery, with this one being on the waterfront.

 Eater Boston is reporting that the owner of Battery Park Bar & Lounge on Batterymarch Street and Sweet Caroline's on Boylston Street is planning on opening a restaurant somewhere in the Seaport District, and that the person running the kitchen will be "an Iron Chef out of New York." No other details have been given at this point in time; the Eater Boston site mentions that it will give additional details whenever it receives them.

Sweet Caroline's opened its doors in September of 2011, while Battery Park first opened in October of 2010. Both dining spots focus mainly on comfort food and traditional American fare.

[November 8 update: Eater Boston has posted more information about this story today, stating that Geoffrey Zakarian, who is the newest "Iron Chef" (and is also a regular on the Food Network show "Chopped"), is going to be involved with a new restaurant coming to the Seaport District. In addition to being on the Food Network, Zakarian also operates The Lambs Club and The National Bar & Dining Rooms in New York City, along with The Water Club in New Jersey. It looks like the new eatery will be similar to The National, which is a New American restaurant with European touches. EB does not mention whether the folks behind Battery Park and Sweet Caroline's are  involved, as indicated earlier; as soon as we get more information, we will post another update here.]

[June 18, 2013 update: A post from Zagat indicates that this project may not be happening--at least for now--as Geoffrey Zakarian says that "There's nothing signed in Boston, zero," though he is looking at various cities, including here. (Thanks to Eater Boston for bringing this to our attention.)]


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Tasty Burger in Cambridge's Harvard Square Eyes 4:00 AM Closing

Last month we wrote about how a burger restaurant is on its way to the Harvard Square section of Cambridge. Now we have more information on the place, including a proposed closing time that may interest more than a few burger lovers.

According to a Licensing Committee General Hearing notice within the City of Cambridge website, the folks behind the upcoming Tasty Burger on JFK Street are looking to be open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 AM seven days a week, pending city approval at the hearing on Tuesday, May 1. Alcohol sales would stop at 1:00 AM Sunday through Wednesday and 2:00 AM Thursday through Saturday, but it appears that if plans go as follows, diners will be able to eat burgers well into the early-morning hours.

The City of Cambridge notice also mentions that the new Tasty Burger could have a capacity of 205 (including seating for 184).

Tasty Burger first opened on Boylston Street in Boston's Fenway neighborhood in September of 2010. The eatery offers burgers, hot dogs, sandwiches, fries, onion rings, milkshakes, slushies, beer, and wine.

The address for Tasty Burger in Harvard Square will be: Tasty Burger, 40 JFK Street, Cambridge, MA, 02138.

[Earlier Article]
Plans for Tasty Burger in Davis Square Fall Through; Harvard Square Opening Planned


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City Landing Is Opening at Long Wharf on the Boston Waterfront

As mentioned in an article here last month, a new restaurant is coming to Long Wharf on Boston's Waterfront, and now there is a bit more news about the upcoming spot.

The Boston Magazine Chowder blog is reporting that City Landing is going to be opening in the State Street space where Sel del la Terre has been for the past 12 years (the French eatery is closing this Sunday). The new dining spot, which will be run by Bill Brodsky--the former chef at the Wequassett Resort & Golf Club in Harwich--will apparently include the type of eclectic New American fare that the Wequassett's Twenty-Eight Atlantic restaurant is known for, and it will also have a "bar crumbs" menu at the bar, featuring a different set of three small plates each night. (A few of the small plates offered will likely include chicken and waffles, hoisin-and-chile-glazed yakitori-style meatballs, and strawberry shortcake with seared foie gras, according to Chowder.)

Expect City Landing to open sometime this summer.

[June 6 update: The Boston Business Journal reports that City Landing is planning to open in July. The article also mentions that the restaurant will have an outdoor patio.]

[July 5 update: Grub Street Boston states that City Landing is hoping to open "on or about July 24."]

[July 20 update: UrbanDaddy is reporting that City Landing is going to be opening a week from today (Friday, July 27).]

The address for this new restaurant at Long Wharf on the Boston waterfront is: City Landing, 255 State Street, Boston, MA, 02109.

[Earlier Article]
City Landing Is Opening at Long Wharf on the Boston Waterfront


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Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Sami's Wrap 'n' Roll in Jamaica Plain Is Now Cafe Beirut

A Middle Eastern and Mediterranean restaurant that opened in Jamaica Plain a little more than two years ago now has a new name, though it appears that at least some of the menu is similar to that of the old place.

According to their Facebook page, Sami's Wrap 'n' Roll on Centre Street has become Cafe Beirut and is featuring Middle Eastern fare with a nod toward Lebanese cuisine. The restaurant's menu features such items as kafta kebob, pumpkin kibby, stuffed grape leaves, lamb brains, fried eggplant, spinach pie, fried cauliflower, and lamajeun, with rotating specials such as baked lamb, curry chicken, vegetarian mousaka, and okra stew. Both lunch and dinner are served daily at Cafe Beirut.

Sami's Wrap 'n' Roll first opened in the winter of 2010 and was connected to Sami's in the Longwood Medical District of Boston, which started out in the late 1970s. There had been another Sami's Wrap 'n' Roll at the Longwood Galleria food court, but that closed last summer.

The address for Cafe Beirut is: Cafe Beirut, 654 Centre Street, Jamaica Plain, MA, 02130. The website is at http://www.cafebeirutjamaicaplain.com/


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A Sweeter Life to Be Held at the Haley House Bakery Cafe in Roxbury, April 29, 2012

A dessert-based event is coming to a non-profit restaurant in Roxbury's Dudley Square this weekend.

According to Brown Paper Tickets, A Sweeter Life will be held at the Haley House Bakery Cafe on Dade Street on Sunday, April 29 from 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM. The event, which supports Haley House's Transitional Employment Program for people who are transitioning from incarceration, will feature samples of dessert items from several area chefs, including Joanne Chang (Flour Bakery), Nicole Cody (Finale), Maura Kilpatrick (Sofra), Jiho Kim (L'Espalier), Lee Napoli (Chocolee Chocolate), Gus Rancatore (Toscanini), and Elaine Stella (Met Club). In addition to dessert samplings, Equal Exchange will be sampling coffees at the event.

Tickets to A Sweeter Life cost $40 each ($100 for early admission at 2:00 PM, which includes a pre-reception with the pastry chefs), and can be ordered at http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/239036

The Haley House Bakery Cafe is located at the corner of Dade Street and Washington Street. Their website is at http://www.haleyhouse.org/bakery_cafe


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East End Grille Is Opening in East Somerville

It is no secret that 118 Broadway in East Somerville has been a space of interest of late for possible restaurants opening, and now it looks like things are finally starting to come together for a dining spot definitely opening there.

Confirming information in an email that we received several days ago, the Somerville Patch is reporting that the East End Grille is coming to 118 Broadway, which had been the home of Khoury's State Spa--and which the person behind La Brasa (which will be opening at 130 Broadway instead) and the folks behind Redbones in Davis Square (a proposal that apparently fell through) had looked at over recent times. The article mentions that one of the people behind the new eatery is a manager at Orleans restaurant in Davis Square, while the chef comes from the Ames Hotel in downtown Boston. The cuisine will mostly be traditional American fare with Southern influences, with a good number of vegetarian dishes available.

The Patch says that a complete renovation of the building is planned, with a possible opening sometime in the late summer or early fall.

[May 31, 2013 update: According to one of our readers, the East End Grille is now open.]

[Earlier Articles]
Redbones May Be Thinking of Opening a Restaurant in East Somerville
Daniel Bojorquez from Natick's Sel de la Terre to Open La Brasa in East Somerville


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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Taste of Dorchester to Be Held on April 26, 2012

Later this week, a food event returns to a neighborhood of Boston once again.

According to the Massachusetts Affordable Housing Alliance (MAHA) website, the 4th annual Taste of Dorchester will be held on Thursday, April 26 from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM at the IBEW Local 103 on Freeport Street. The event will include food items from a number of local restaurants and food purveyors, including the Ashmont Grill, the Blarney Stone, Dot2Dot Cafe, Flat Black Coffee Company, Gerard's Restaurant, Irie Jamaican Style Restaurant, Pat's Pizza, Savin Scoop, Van Shabu and Bar, Venezia, and others.

Tickets to the 2012 Taste of Dorchester cost $35 ($20 for seniors and children), with all proceeds supporting MAHA's programs and the IBEW Local 103/Taste of Dorchester scholarship. For more information on this event, please go to the link below:

http://www.mahahome.org/tasteofdorchester


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Spring Seasonings: Tastes of Our Neighborhood Coming to Newton April 30, 2012

A culinary event is on its way to Newton next week, and a number of local eateries will be participating.

According to Goldstein Pierce, Spring Seasonings: Tastes of Our Neighborhood will be held at the Boston Marriott Newton Hotel on Monday, April 30 from 5:30 PM to 8:00 PM. The annual event will focus on samples of food from approximately 40 restaurants and food purveyors, including such spots as Cabot's, The Cottage, Deluxe Station Diner, Dunn-Gaherin's, Fiorella's, Masala Art, Paddy's, Riverbend, Spiga, and others.

Tickets cost $25 for members of the Newton-Needham Chamber of Commerce ($30 for non-members; $35 at the door), with information--including how to buy tickets--at the link below:

http://www.nnchamber.com/cwt/External/WCPages/WCEvents/EventDetail.aspx?EventID=351


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Bronwyn Is Opening in Somerville's Union Square

Yet another dining spot is on its way to the Union Square section of Somerville, and the folks behind the place also happen to run a high-end restaurant in neighboring Cambridge.

The Boston Magazine Chowder blog is reporting that Bronwyn is opening on Washington Street, bringing to the Union Square neighborhood what looks to be a New American bistro that will likely have Austrian, German, and Northern Italian influences. The husband-and-wife team who own T.W. Food in the Huron Village section of Cambridge are behind the new spot, which is expected to open in the fall. The Chowder blog mentions that Bronwyn will be more of a casual place than T.W. Food, and it will feature a sausage tasting menu, specialty Schnapps, and an outdoor beer garden.

Union Square will soon be seeing several other restaurants on the way as well, including Cafe Tango and Fortissimo.

[November 20 update: Eater Boston reports that Bronwyn is planning to open in December, with the post also mentioning that the dining spot will have a full liquor license and the menu will lean toward Eastern European fare.]

[May 7, 2013 update: Grub Street states that Bronwyn is planning to open on Wednesday, May 15.]

[May 15, 2013 update: Eater Boston confirms that Bronwyn opens at 5:00 PM today.]

The address for this new restaurant in Union Square is: Bronwyn, 255 Washington Street, Somerville, MA, 02143.


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Monday, April 23, 2012

Highlights for the Week Ending April 20, 2012

A number of new stories and articles focusing on the Boston-area restaurant scene came out over the past week, including a Brookline bakery being recognized by a food magazine, a popular Back Bay restaurant possibly having to leave its space, and a bookstore and cafe coming back to Medford. In addition, our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants) included an updated review of a restaurant and bar in Whitman, a blog entry on dining spots in towns not known for their restaurants, and a photo of a cheeseburger from a food stand in South Boston.

Below are links to these and other items from the past week:

Boston Restaurant Talk

Clear Flour Bread Included in Bon Appetit's List of 10 Best Baguettes in America

Bon Me May Be Opening a Brick-and-Mortar Restaurant

Charley's Might Have to Say Goodbye to Its Newbury Street Location

CHOW's "Best Brewpub in America" Voting Competition Includes Cambridge Brewing

Bestsellers Cafe to Reopen in Medford

Boston's Hidden Restaurants

Updated Review: Venus Cafe in Whitman, MA

Photo: Chicken Dosa from Royal India Bistro in Lexington, MA

Blog Entry: Ten Dining Options in Towns Not Really Known for Their Restaurants

List of Restaurant Closings/Openings for April (So Far)

Photo: Cheeseburger from Sullivan's in South Boston, MA

 

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The Breezeway in Roxbury to Close, Leaving Blue Hill Avenue with One Remaining Bar

A main thoroughfare through Boston that is nearly five miles long may soon have only one bar left along its entire stretch, as a Roxbury drinking establishment on the avenue looks like it will be closing.

Universal Hub is reporting that the Breezeway Bar &amp Grill will be appearing before the Boston Licensing Board in early May in order to try to sell its liquor license to Fogo do Chao, a Brazilian restaurant that is going to be opening in Boston's Back Bay. The article mentions that the Breezeway has been the site of a number of violent incidents, resulting in the owners being brought in before the licensing board repeatedly over the past two years or so.

Assuming that the Breezeway does shut down, this would mean that the only bar left on Blue Hill Avenue would be Packy Connors, which is also in Roxbury. (The stretch of Blue Hill Avenue in Dorchester and Mattapan no longer has any drinking places at all.)

Blue Hill Avenue extends into part of Milton as well, and it is exclusively a residential road in that town, with no bars, restaurants, or other businesses.


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The Urban Grape Is Opening in Boston's South End

It looks like a popular wine store in Chestnut Hill is opening in the South End of Boston at some point in the future.

The BosGuy blog is reporting that The Urban Grape is planning to open on Columbus Avenue, moving into retail space in the building where the Bryant boutique condos are located (between Clarendon Street and Dartmouth Street). The blog entry mentions that this is still in the early stages, as the wine shop needs to get approval from both the licensing board and the neighborhood itself, but it does appear that The Urban Grape could be coming to this spot if all goes as planned..

[April 27 update: Adam's Hospitality & Tourism Industry Blog states that The Urban Grape has been granted a license to operate on Columbus Avenue. It looks like the wine store will be opening sometime after Labor Day.]

[September 5 update: Eater Boston reports that The Urban Grape in the South End is opening on Thursday, September 20.]

[September 20 update: According to their Facebook page, the new Urban Grape in the South End is not quite ready to open, as it is "waiting for one last signature." As soon as it officially opens, we will post another update here.]

[September 28 update: A new post on their Facebook page indicates that the Urban Grape will be opening its doors in the South End today at 5:00 PM.]

The Urban Grape first opened on Boylston Street in Chestnut Hill in the spring of 2010.

The address for this new wine store in the South End is: The Urban Grape, 303 Columbus Avenue, Boston, MA, 02116.


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Clover PRK Comes to Boston Common

The folks behind several vegetarian food trucks in the Boston area--as well as a couple of brick-and-mortar restaurants--have just brought a food truck to one of the busiest sections of the city.

According to their website, Clover PRK is now up and running on Boston Common near the corner of Tremont Street and Park Street. This location for the Clover Food Lab's latest truck coincides with what John Goodman PR states is a restoration of the Brewer Fountain Plaza, which, when finished (a celebration of its completion will take place on May 2), will feature an outdoor "reading room," live piano, tables and chairs, umbrellas, board games, and Wi-Fi.

The Clover PRK truck will be open from 7:00 AM to 7:00 PM seven days a week.

For more information on the Clover Food Lab, please go to their website at http://www.cloverfoodlab.com/


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Luke O'Neil to Film a TV Pilot in Somerville's Davis Square

A Boston-area journalist who recently wrote a book on dive bars in Boston is going to be shifting his focus from writing to television this week.

Grub Street Boston reports that Luke O'Neil is going to be filming a TV pilot today at Saloon in the Davis Square section of Somerville and tomorrow at the adjacent Davis Square Theatre. The show, which will be called Carousel, will be a talk show that features interviews with chefs, drink demos from bartenders, and live music. Luke mentions that it is not yet known which television channel it will be on, though it appears that the show will probably be on a regional New England station.

A writer for such publications as the Boston Globe, Wall Street Journal, Boston Phoenix, Stuff, Weekly Dig, and Boston Metro, Luke O'Neil published a book last year called Boston's Best Dive Bars: Drinking and Diving in Beantown that focused on down-and-dirty places frequented more by locals than visitors to Boston.


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Pizzapalooza in Newton Has Closed; New England Soup Factory to Expand into Their Space

A restaurant in Newton that featured Sicilian-style and "palooza-style" pizza has closed, and a popular soup spot is going to be expanding into the vacated space.

The Newton Patch is reporting that Pizzapalooza on Needham Street is now shuttered, and that the adjacent New England Soup Factory will be taking over the space, allowing them to enlarge their restaurant. (The article mentions that Pizzapalooza, which had shut down their Hingham location last summer, closed their remaining location in Newton last month.) The expanded space will allow the New England Soup Factory to install a rotisserie oven, so expect marinated chicken to be added to the menu once the expansion is completed, according to the Patch. It appears that other items will be added as well, including "fresh and funky" dishes along with meals that have a home-cooked feel.

[December 31 update: A note sent to us from the restaurant indicates that New England Soup Factory has opened the rotisserie in the new space in Newton, which is connected to their original space. Offerings include an all-natural apple brined chicken that comes from a family farm in Pennsylvania and is marinated for 24 hours before spitting it on the rotisserie.]

The New England Soup Factory, which has been on Needham Street for 15 years, also has a location on Brookline Place in Brookline Village.

The address of the former Pizzapalooza space that the New England Soup Factory is expanding into is 244 Needham Street, Newton, MA, 02464.


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Friday, April 20, 2012

Taste of the North End to Be Held May 4, 2012

A food-based event is returning to Boston once again this May, and as always, a number of local eateries will be participating.

According to their website, the 18th annual Taste of the North End will be held on Friday, May 4 from 7:00 PM to 11:00 PM at the DCR's Steriti Memorial Rink on Commercial Street. More than 25 restaurants and food purveyors will be taking part, including Al Dente, Artu, Ducali, Il Panino, J. Pace, Lucia Ristorante, Mercato del Mare, Pagliuca, Taranta, and Vito. Beer and wine will be provided by Aveniu Brands, Mionetto, Sam Adams, Vin Divino, and others.

Tickets to the 2012 Taste of the North End cost $79 through today, then $99 from tomorrow on.

For more information on this event, please go to the link below.

http://www.tasteofthenorthend.org/


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A Taste of Spring Is Coming to Woburn May 16, 2012

A tasting event to benefit an organization that helps people with developmental disabilities is coming to Woburn once again next month, and as always, a number of local restaurants will be involved with it.

An event page from NuPath, Inc. indicates that the 15th Annual "A Taste of Spring" will be held on Wednesday, May 16 at the Holiday Inn Select at 15 Middlesex Canal Park by the Showcase Cinema, with the event starting at 6:00 PM. A few of the restaurants and food purveyors that will be at this year's Taste of Spring include Bistro 44, Exchange Street Bistro, L'Andana, Masa, On the Border, Spice of Melrose, Tango Restaurant, and The Chocolate Truffle. In addition to food and drink, the event will also feature raffles and door prizes.

The donation price of a ticket for the 2012 Taste of Spring is $25.

For more information on this event, please go to the link below.

A Taste of Spring 2012


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Clear Flour Bread Included in Bon Appetit's List of 10 Best Baguettes in America

Bon Appetit has just come out with a list of the 10 best baguettes in the United States, and the list includes a bakery in Brookline.

According to the article, Clear Flour Bread on Thorndike Street (just off Comm. Ave. near the Allston border) had their baguettes picked by the food magazine, with two other New England spots being picked as well by the editors--PB Boulangerie Bistro in South Wellfleet and The Standard Baking Company in Portland, ME. One other spot in the Northeast also made the list--Bien Cuit in Brooklyn, NY.

Clear Flour Bread is known its variety of freshly-made baked goods and pastries, including its sourdough bread, brioche, scones, croissants, and cookies. Our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants) has featured Clear Flour Bread as an under-the-radar spot to check out, with the review being at the following link:

http://www.hiddenboston.com/ClearFlourBread.html

The address for Clear Flour Bread is 178 Thorndike Street, Brookline, MA, 02446. Their website can be found at http://www.clearflourbread.com/

For a complete list of the places picked by Bon Appetit, please go to the link below.

The 10 Best Baguettes in America


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Mantra in Downtown Boston Is Closing

A French-Indian fusion restaurant in the heart of downtown Boston is going to be closing its doors.

The IndUS Business Journal is reporting that Mantra on Temple Place in Downtown Crossing will be shutting down, though no specific closing date has been given as of yet. The article mentions that the group behind the eatery--One World Cuisine--is "repositioning" their chain of Boston-area restaurants, which includes Kashmir and Mumbai Chopstix in the Back Bay, Mela in the South End, Bukhara in Jamaica Plain, Dosa Factory in Cambridge's Central Square (and soon, Waltham), and Diva Bistro in Somerville's Davis Square, as well as the recently-closed Cafe of India in Cambridge's Harvard Square.

Mantra first opened in 2001, bringing to Downtown Crossing a place to get such dishes as chicken biryani, mutter mushroom masala, cumin-dusted halibut, tuna tartare, duck confit, tandoor-roasted veal chop, and seared diver scallops.

The address for this restaurant is: Mantra, 52 Temple Place, Boston, MA, 02111.


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Thursday, April 19, 2012

Vineyard Grille Opens at Logan Airport

A new restaurant and wine bar has just opened at Logan Airport in East Boston.

MarketWatch reports that Vineyard Grille is now open at Logan's Terminal E, bringing to the airport a place to get regional seafood dishes, tapas, and burgers, along with wines from throughout the New England area. The article mentions that the new eatery is just under 2,600 square feet in size and is part of the AIRMALL at BOS, which includes more than 35 restaurants and bars along with a number of specialty shops and news and gift stores.

A few other restaurants that can be found at Terminal E include Boston Beer Works, the Earl of Sandwich, Java Coast Cafe/Bar, and O'Brian's Pub.


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Bon Me Is Opening a Brick-and-Mortar Restaurant in Cambridge's Kendall Square

[Ed note: This article was updated on July 27 and August 20 to reflect a planned location for the place.]

A Boston food truck that features Vietnamese sandwiches--and just put a second truck on the road--is going to be opening a brick-and-mortar dining spot.

The Daily Free Press is reporting that the owners of Bon Me are checking out restaurant spaces in the hopes of opening a permanent restaurant. The article mentions that nothing has been finalized as of yet, though the folks behind the food truck are actively looking. Bon Me added a second truck this week, with the trucks being stations at a variety of sites in Boston, including Dewey Square, Stuart Street, BU East, Belvidere Street, Milk Street, and City Hall Plaza. They feature sandwiches, noodles salads, rice bowls, and drinks such as spicy ginger lemonade and Vietnamese iced coffee.

[July 27 update: According to a poster on the Chowhound site, Bon Me is planning to open their brick-and-mortar restaurant at One Kendall Square in Cambridge.We sent a message to the Bon Me folks to see if they may be moving into the former Think Tank space and they said "close!" but did not specify the spot. It is possible that (as one Chowhounder said) they may be moving into the space under West Bridge, but this has not been confirmed. MyPublicNotices.com has posted a bit more information on the upcoming Bon Me spot, stating that it will be an "Asian-inspired fast order food restaurant establishment in the Kendall One Complex."]

[August 20 update: It appears that Bon Me may indeed be moving into the space below West Bridge, according to a veteran poster on the Chowhound site. The poster also mentions that some tables and stools are now in the space.]

[August 27 update: Bon Me has made it official about the opening of their brick-and-mortar restaurant that is coming to Kendall Square, though they do not specifically mention that it will be below West Bridge (see post above). A post on their site indicates that they signed the lease for the new restaurant about a week ago, with an expected opening around the end of the year. (Thanks to Eater Boston for bringing this to our attention.)]

[September 4 update: The City of Cambridge website has given a bit more information on the upcoming Bon Me. The exact address for their restaurant is One Kendall Square, Suite B3105 (we are still trying to confirm if this is indeed the space below West Bridge), with the place having seating for 20 inside and another 10 on an outdoor patio. Hours will be 7:00 AM to 2:00 AM seven days a week, though the 2:00 AM time could be a typo (we will try to find out if they meant 2:00 PM).]

[February 19, 2013 update: UrbanDaddy reports that Bon Me has soft-opened, though its official opening is planned for Friday.]

[February 22, 2013 update: A Twitter post from Bon Me indicates that their official opening in Kendall Square is indeed today.]

The website for Bon Me can be found at http://www.bonmetruck.com/


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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Charley's to Say Goodbye to Its Newbury Street Location

[Ed note: This article was updated on September 24 to reflect new information that came out today.]

A popular restaurant in the heart of the Back Bay that features traditional American fare may be losing its home.

The Boston Business Journal is reporting that the owners of the Newbury Street building in which Charley's resides are looking to get other restaurants and retail shops into the building, and that Charley's lease is now up. The article mentions that the group behind Charley's would like to stay in the building, but it looks like this may not be in the works, and there could actually be plans for a large retail shop of some kind taking the bottom floors where the restaurant currently resides.

[September 24 update: Grub Street Boston has confirmed that Charley's will indeed be closing its Newbury Street location, as the Tavistock Group (the owner of the restaurant) was unsuccessful in renegotiating a lease for the space.]

[September 24 update #2: Adam's Hospitality & Tourism Industry Blog mentions that Charley's has already closed, having shuttered last night after failed lease negotiations.]

[September 27 update: The Boston Business Journal reports that the Frye Company (which makes footwear such as Frye Boots) is planning to take over the space where Charley's had been. (Thanks to for Adam's Hospitality & Tourism Industry Blog for bringing this to our attention.)]

Charley's has another location of its restaurant in the Chestnut Hill Mall.

The address for Charley's in the Back Bay is: Charley's, 284 Newbury Street, Boston, MA, 02115. Their website can be found at http://www.charleys-restaurant.com/


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To Beirut Is Opening in Norwood

A market in Norwood that focuses on Mediterranean food is going to be opening a Lebanese restaurant next door.

According to posters on today's Boston Globe food chat, Cedar's Market on Cottage Street in Norwood Center will open a dining spot adjacent to the market called "To Beirut" possibly in the next few weeks or so. Based on the foods that the market sells, expect a mix of Lebanese and Mediterranean fare at the new eatery, with some Greek items possibly offered as well (as soon as we see a menu for To Beirut, we will post an update here).

[June 13 update: According to a poster on this week's Boston Globe food chat, To Beirut is now open. Their menu includes such items as lamb tartare, grape leaves, chicken shawarma, hummus, beef tongue, kafta rollups, and tabouleh.]

Norwood is home to another Lebanese restaurant called Byblos, which is also in the center of town (on Washington Street).

The address for this dining spot in Norwood is: To Beirut, 15 Cottage Street, Norwood, MA, 02062. Their website can be found at http://www.to-beirut.com/


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CHOW's "Best Brewpub in America" Voting Competition Includes Cambridge Brewing

A national website that focuses on food and drink has just begun a voting competition for the best brewpub in America, and the voting bracket includes a Boston-area spot.

The CHOW site (which includes the popular Chowhound forum) has set up a four-week-long bracket with 16 competitors included, one of which is Cambridge Brewing in Kendall Square. Voting began yesterday, with the first round ending on Tuesday, April 24. Rounds 2 and 3 will follow, with the "Final Battle" taking place from May 8 to May 15. Voters should take into consideration food, atmosphere, and the creativity of the beer, according to CHOW.

No other New England brewpubs made the grade, with the closest one being the Southampton Publick House in Southampton, NY (which happens to be facing Cambridge Brewing in Round 1).

[May 1 update: Cambridge Brewing bested Publick House in Round 1 and defeated Wrecking Bar (Atlanta) in Round 2; the brewpub is now facing Revolution Brewing (Chicago) in Round 3, which is the semifinals.]

[May 8 update: Cambridge Brewing defeated Chicago's Revolution Brewing in the semifinals and now goes on to face North by Northwest (Austin) in the finals. (Voting ends May 15.)]

For more information on the "Best Brewpub in America" voting competition (including how to vote), please go to the link below.

Pick the Best Brewpub in America!


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Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Orange Leaf Frozen Yogurt Coming to Several Boston-Area Communities

An Oklahoma-based chain of frozen yogurt shops with one location in Eastern Massachusetts is getting ready to expand throughout the Boston area.

According to their website, Orange Leaf Frozen Yogurt is going to be opening locations in Belmont, Lexington, Marblehead, Melrose, Newton, Reading, Salem, Tewksbury, and Westford, with others a bit further away from Boston coming to Newburyport and Seekonk. Currently, the state's only location of the chain is in Andover.

[July 10 update: According to their website, three new Orange Leaf locations are now open in the Boston area--Lexington, Marblehead, and Salem.]

Orange Leaf features freshly-prepared yogurt made with fat-free milk, with such flavors as banana, cheesecake, cotton candy, gingerbread, kiwi, orange, red velvet, taro, and many others available. Toppings include cocoa pebbles, graham cracker, jelly bellies, mango, pecan, sprinkles, and more.

The website for Orange Leaf can be found at http://orangeleafyogurt.com/


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Taberna de Haro in Brookline to Expand Its Space

A Spanish restaurant in Brookline that has been in business for nearly 15 years is going to be getting bigger.

According to their Facebook page, Taberna de Haro on Beacon Street is expanding into the space next door. The post also mentions that because of the expansion, there will be both "increased dining opportunities" and "[increased] job opportunities" at the place, which features tapas (small plates), entrees, and regional specialties, including such items as black paella, garlic soup, fava beans with ham, codfish balls with saffron, octopus with olive oil and Spanish paprika, braised quail, and grilled rib-eye. The restaurant also offers more than 240 Spanish wines.

Taberna de Haro first opened in 1998.

The address for this restaurant in Brookline is: Taberna de Haro, 999 Beacon Street, Brookline, MA, 02446. Their website can be found at http://tabernaboston.com/


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The Lodge Bar and Grill Is Opening in Randolph

A new restaurant and bar is on its way to Randolph, and the owner of the place is also involved with a couple of eating and drinking establishments in Boston.

According to their Facebook page, The Lodge Bar and Grill is going to be opening on North Main Street (Route 28) where the Piccadilly Pub used to be until closing just under a year ago. An earlier Randolph Herald article mentioned that the person behind the new spot is one of the managers of T’s Pub on Commonwealth Avenue near Boston University and the Baseball Tavern on Boylston Street near Fenway Park. The article indicates that The Lodge Bar and Grill will be a family-friendly "neighborhood tavern" that will be open for lunch and dinner Monday through Saturday, with a possible brunch being offered on Sunday, based on the hours given for the place (11:00 AM to 1:00 AM Monday through Saturday and 10:00 AM through 1:00 AM on Sundays).

[May 29 update: According to their Facebook page, The Lodge Bar and Grill is now open.]

The address for this new spot in Randolph is: The Lodge Bar and Grill, 1064 North Main Street, Randolph, MA, 02368. Their website is at http://www.thelodgebar.com/


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Bestsellers Cafe Is Reopening in Medford

A combination bookstore/cafe in Medford that closed five years ago is getting ready to reopen.

According to their Facebook page, Bestsellers Cafe on High Street is going to be opening soon, with the Medford Square shop finishing up with renovations (based on photos shown) and talking about hiring workers for the place. The store closed back in the spring of 2007 for what looked to be renovations, but it has been boarded up ever since. A Medford Patch article mentions that once Bestsellers Cafe opens its doors, the bookstore and coffee shop will feature a deck looking out at the Mystic River, a larger counter that it previously had, and more retail space, along with used books.

[August 2 update: According to their Facebook page, Bestsellers Cafe officially opens today, though their grand opening won't be until the weekend of August 11-12.]

The address for this new bookstore/cafe in Medford is: Bestsellers Cafe, 24 High Street, Medford, MA, 02155. Their Facebook page can be found at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Bestsellers-Cafe/118454511526675



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Monday, April 16, 2012

Highlights for the Week Ending April 13, 2012

Several new stories and articles centering on the Boston-area restaurant scene came out over the past week, including a tavern and tea room coming to a soon-to-reopen museum in Fort Point Channel, a combination restaurant/lounge/art gallery opening in Boston, and bad news for folks hoping to see Top Chef come to the city. In addition, our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants) included a review of an Indian restaurant in Lexington, a contest focusing on restaurant pictures, and a photo of a sandwich from a diner in Roxbury.

Below are links to these and other items from the past week:

Boston Restaurant Talk

Tavern and Tea Room Coming to Boston Tea Party Ships and Museum

Mei Mei Street Kitchen Food Truck Coming to Boston

Four New Outdoor Patios Come to Boston for 2012

Liquid Art House to Open in Boston

Boston Will Apparently Not Be Home to Top Chef for Season 10

Boston's Hidden Restaurants

Latest Review: Royal India Bistro in Lexington, MA

Photo: Meatloaf Sandwich from Victoria's Diner in Roxbury, MA

Mystery Photo Contest

Updated Review: Lucky's Lounge in Boston, MA

Photo: Rice Pudding from Royal India Bistro in Lexington, MA

 

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Friday, April 13, 2012

Tavern and Tea Room Coming to Boston Tea Party Ships and Museum

The Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum is going to be opening once again on the city's waterfront, and it will feature a "publik house" that will offer food and drink.

Adam's Hospitality & Tourism Blog reports that the museum will be reopening on June 25, and included within it will be "The Tavern & Tea Room," which will serve muffins, scones, five types of tea that were dumped from the ships back in the 1700s, and possibly alcoholic beverages, based on information from a post by Eater Boston. The museum itself includes three restored tall ships, including The Beaver and Dartmouth (two whaleships) and Eleanor (a full rigged ship). Adam's Hospitality & Tourism Blog mentions that Dartmouth won't be opening until 2013.

The Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum site has been closed for more than 10 years, as back in 2001 it was heavily damaged due to a fire caused by a lightning strike.

The website for the museum can be found at http://www.bostonteapartyship.com/


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