Monday, August 31, 2015

Three Restaurants in Cambridge's Kendall Square Sustain Damage in Fire

A two-alarm fire hit the Kendall Square section of Cambridge over the weekend, forcing three dining and drinking spots to close for the time being.

Eater Boston is reporting (via NECN) that a fire broke out at Flat Top Johnny's last night, with the blaze also resulting in damage to the Blue Room and Beantowne Coffee House. Flat Top Johnny's, which is a dining and drinking spot that is a popular place to play pool, mentions on its Facebook page that it will be "closed until further notice," while the Blue Room simply states on its website that its "lunch grill is closed" (and it is currently not taking reservations), and Beantowne Coffee House says via Facebook that "our store was destroyed last night...the fire didn't enter our store, but a few hundred gallons of water supplied by the great guys at the Cambridge FD sure did!"

While Beantowne Coffee states that they will be having a "grand re-opening" at some point, none of the three are saying when they might reopen at this point in time.

No one was injured in the blaze, according to NECN.

[September 1 update: All three dining spots affected by the fire have posted updates to their social media pages, with Flat Top Johnny's saying that they will be "working over the next few weeks" to get the place up and running again, the Blue Room mentioning that they (and Belly Wine Bar) will be "closed until further updates," and Beantowne Coffee House simply stating that they are on "Day 2 of rebuild."]

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


[A related post from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): List of Restaurant Closings and Openings in the Boston Area]




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Owner of Now-Closed Watch City Brewing Co. Found Dead on Plum Island

The person who was found dead on a beach north of Boston last weekend was the woman behind a brewery and brewpub in Waltham that closed last year.

According to an article from boston.com, a body was found on a Plum Island beach last Sunday, with the person initially being identified as Jocelyn McLaughlin of Newburyport. The site then discovered that McLaughlin was the name of the 59-year-old woman's ex-husband and learned that she also went by the name Jocelyn Hughes, finding out at that point that she was the owner of the now-closed Watch City Brewing Co. in Waltham. The cause of death has not yet been determined, according to boston.com and other sources.

Watch City Brewing closed its doors in June of 2014 after approximately 20 years in business, with the word initially being that it was shut down for repairs. The Moody Street spot never reopened, however, and an auction took place at the site the following month. (Boston.com says that Hughes subsequently became a franchisee of a location of Craft Beer Cellar in Amesbury.)

The address for Watch City Brewing Co. was 256 Moody Street, Waltham, MA, 02453.

[Earlier Article]
Watch City Brewing Co. in Waltham Has Closed

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Cafe Luigi in Bedford Has Closed; Will Reopen in New Building

A popular suburban restaurant that has been in business for nearly 30 years has closed for now, though it will reopen in a new home next year.

According to one of our sources on the Friends of Boston's Hidden Restaurants Facebook page (and confirmed on a post from the dining spot), Cafe Luigi in Bedford closed its doors over the weekend, as the building in which it resides within the Bedford Marketplace shopping center is getting ready to be demolished as part of a major renovation of the Great Road complex. The dining spot is hoping to reopen in the spring of 2016 once construction on the new building that it will move into has been completed.

Luigi's, which first opened its doors in the mid-1980s, is a family-friendly Italian restaurant with a mix of old-fashioned Italian-American dishes and more traditional Italian fare.

In addition to Luigi's, the Bedford Marketplace shopping center is also home to locations of Whole Foods, Marshall's, and a number of other stores, and it will also be home to a location of Red Heat Tavern sometime this fall. (The original Red Heat is located in Wilmington.)

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


[Related article from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): Slideshow--Twelve Pasta Dishes from Restaurants in the Boston Area and Beyond]



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Oye's Restaurant and Bar to Move into Donatello's Space on Route 1 in Saugus

Another piece of the "old" Route 1 is disappearing, and a dining spot a few miles to the west is planning to take over the space.

According to an article in Wicked Local, the town of Saugus has given its approval for Oye's Restaurant &amp Bar to operate at 44 Broadway, taking over the space where Donatello's currently is. The post mentions that the space will receive only minor renovations, with the upcoming pan-Asian eatery modeling the concept after the original location of the restaurant, which is on Walkers Brook Drive in Reading. It is not yet known when Donatello's might close or when Oye's could open; as soon as we find out more, we will post an update here. [October 2 update: According to a Facebook post from the restaurant, Donatello's is now closed, with its last day in operation being earlier this week.]

Donatello's first opened in the late 1980s, featuring a mix of old-fashioned Italian-American and traditional Italian fare in an upscale environment. It is one of a few longtime spots on the Saugus stretch of Route 1 that have either closed over the past several years or are slated to close, including Hilltop Steak House, which shut down in October of 2013, and the Route 1 Miniature Golf/Dairy Castle complex in Saugus, which could be closing either later this year or in 2016.

The website for Donatello's is at http://www.donatello-restaurant.com/ while the website for the original Oye's in Reading can be found at http://www.oyesreading.com/

[June 13, 2016 update: Nearly 10 months after first reporting on this, Oye's has still not opened and now the board of selectmen want to see progress made, according to a new Saugus Advertiser article. The post indicates that the restaurant now has plans to include a sushi bar on the first floor and a service bar on the second floor--and they are working with a building inspector--but the board thought that the place would be open by now and are concerned about the length of time that its license remains unused. Oye's is now looking to open this fall, and the board has asked to meet with the restaurant on June 22 to get specific details on its progress.]

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


[A related post from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): List of Restaurant Closings and Openings in the Boston Area]



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Sunday, August 30, 2015

Chef Stabbed to Death at P.F. Chang's in Peabody's North Shore Mall

A North Shore restaurant was the scene of a fatal stabbing yesterday evening, and the person who was killed was a chef at the dining spot.

According to an article from CBS Boston/WBZ-TV, a chef at P.F. Chang's at the North Shore Mall in Peabody was stabbed to death in the kitchen area of the restaurant, apparently by another chef at the start of the dinner rush a bit after 5:30 PM yesterday. The post says that 38-year-old Elivelton Dias of Salem was pronounced dead at Salem Hospital, while 23-year-old Jaquan Huston was arrested at his home in Salem. The restaurant chain said in a statement that "Tonight we lost an employee in a tragic incident at our Peabody restaurant. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of our colleague....We will be mobilizing support to provide care to our colleague's family, as well as our fellow employees, during this difficult time. We are also cooperating with local law enforcement as they conduct their investigation."

Huston will be arraigned tomorrow at Peabody District Court, according to CBS Boston.

[August 31 update: Eater Boston mentions (via WCVB) that no motive has been determined in the attack at P.F. Chang's as of yet; the article also says that the restaurant remains closed pending investigation, with ordering and reservation services being disabled.]

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[Note: Please join the Friends of Boston's Hidden Restaurants Facebook Group Page to get more info on dining spots and also chat with others about Boston-area restaurants.]



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Friday, August 28, 2015

Medford Brewing Company on the Way

It looks like another beer company is getting ready to hit the local scene.

DigBoston is reporting that Nick Bolitho and Max Heinegg of Medford Brewing Company are looking to find space at a contract brewery where they can produce the company's beer, with Heinegg currently brewing beer in his basement. The article mentions that it it not yet known exactly what kinds of beers will come out of Medford Brewing Company, though Bolitho says that they want to appeal to "normal people" by putting out flavorful beers, while also catering to hop lovers as well.

If all goes well and the necessary paperwork and permits are worked out, Medford Brewing Company could be opening sometime in the late fall or early winter, according to DigBoston.

The website for Medford Brewing Company will be at http://medfordbrewingcompany.com/

[October 3, 2016 update: Boston Magazine states that Medford Brewing Company has just started releasing its American Pale Ale, with this beer being the only one available for now. The article says that the company is currently making its beer out of Great North Aleworks in Manchester, NH, though it does hope to find its own brewing facility in Medford if possible (Medford Square and West Medford are both mentioned).]

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


[Related article from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): Slideshow--Ten Good Places to Get Beer in the Boston Area]



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Kingston Station in Downtown Boston Is Closed for Renovations

A restaurant and bar in downtown Boston is closed until further notice, and it is not known if or when it might reopen.

Easter Boston is reporting (via a tipster) that Kingston Station is locked up, with a sign out front saying that the Kingston Street spot is closed for renovations. (A note on its website confirms this--with the note saying to check back "soon" for more information--and EB also says that its phone is disconnected.) A source within the restaurant industry who is in the local area is unsure of the status of Kingston Station, and no other information seems to be out on the place; as soon as we find out more about its status, we will post an update here.

[November 10 update: Based on a licensing board page within the City of Boston website, it looks like Kingston Station will reopen with the same name--though apparently under different ownership, with Kingston Cafe LLC petitioning to transfer the liquor license to The Kingston Group LLC and the manager of the place being Elizabeth Scott.]

[January 28, 2016 update: A new post from Eater Boston indicates (via Craigslist) that the new version of Kingston Station--which will may be called Kingston Grille and Bar--is now hiring, with the Yelp page for the place saying that it plans to open on March 1.]

[February 15, 2016 update: Eater Boston mentions (via the restaurant's Instagram page) that the people behind the upcoming Kingston Grille and Bar come from "some of the minds behind" Abby Lane, Back Bay Harry's, and Stoddard's Pub.]

Kingston Station first opened in 2007, moving into the space where Peking Tom's had once been. The restaurant features a mix of modern and traditional American fare and is a popular spot for folks going to--or coming from--the nearby Boston Opera House theater.

The address for Kingston Station is 25 Kingston Street, Boston, MA, 02111. Its website can be found at http://www.kingstonstation.com/

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


[A related post from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): List of Restaurant Closings and Openings in the Boston Area]



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Spindler Confections to Open in North Cambridge

A new candy shop is on its way to a part of Cambridge that seems to be becoming a "small confectioners' district."

Cambridge Day is reporting that Spindler Confections is planning to open on Mass. Ave. in North Cambridge next to Nussli 118° (a snack shop focusing on healthy treats) and a short distance away from Pemberton Farms (an upscale market that offers locally-made chocolates, candies, cakes, and desserts). The article mentions that the new store will feature small-batch sweets such as brittles, caramels, and chocolates--and it may eventually may sell cookies and other baked goods during the holiday season as well--with founder Jeremy Spindler saying that "Everything is done by hand, very small batches. No large machinery whatsoever." If all goes as planned, Spindler Confections may possibly open in early November.

[December 4 update: According to a Chowhound poster, Spindler Confections is planning to open sometime in the middle of this month.]

[December 14 update: The Tables section of The Boston Globe states that Spindler Confections is now open.]

As Cambridge Day notes, the city used to be a major player in candy manufacturing, with such big names as Necco, Squirrel Brand, and Tootsie Roll Industries being located there (the latter continues to make Junior Mints from its home on Main Street).

The address for this upcoming candy shop in North Cambridge is: Spindler Confections, 2257 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA, 02140. Its website can be found at http://spindlerconfections.com/

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


[A related post from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): List of Restaurant Closings and Openings in the Boston Area]



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Candy Castle in Lexington Is Closing

A candy shop in the northwest suburbs of Boston is calling it a day after more than three decades in business.

According to an article in the Lexington Minuteman, Candy Castle on Mass. Ave. in the center of town is closing today, citing a proposed rent increase of 40 percent from the new owners of the building that makes the business "unsustainable." The article says that owner Paul Clancy and his wife will sell everything today at a discount until it is all gone. Candy Castle first opened its doors 34 years ago, offering everything from jelly beans to fudge to old-fashioned candies and much more.

The address for Candy Castle is 1853 Massachusetts Avenue, Lexington, MA, 02420.

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


[A related post from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): List of Restaurant Closings and Openings in the Boston Area]



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Thursday, August 27, 2015

Federal Judge Rules Against Restaurant at Site of Long Wharf Pavilion

Nearly 10 years ago, a proposal to open a restaurant at the tip of Long Wharf in Boston first came to light, and over the past few years, neighborhood resistance to the plans have resulted in a back-and-forth battle that has included a lawsuit, rulings both for and against it, appeals, and countless meetings on the topic. Now we have learned that plans for the dining spot have taken a serious blow.

According to an article from the NorthEndWaterfront.com site, a federal judge ruled yesterday against the Boston Redevelopment Authority's plans to have a restaurant and bar open at the site of the Long Wharf Pavilion, siding with the National Park Service which believes the space should be parkland that is protected by the Land and Water Conservation Fund Act. The article says that this latest ruling can be appealed by the BRA, and because the judge was not specific about whether the entire "cross-hatched area on the 1980 map" of Long Wharf is protected could potentially lead to further challenges.

[November 2 update: A new article from NorthEndWaterfront.com states that the BRA has indeed appealed the federal judge's decision to keep a restaurant and bar from opening at the tip of Long Wharf; this means that what the judge calls the "Long War of Long Wharf" will continue for the foreseeable future. (Thanks to Universal Hub for bringing this to our attention.)]

Back in 2010, we reported that a couple of years into the battle on the space, a restaurant called Doc's Long Wharf seemed to be interested in opening at the site, though plans for the dining spot appeared to be in danger the following year due to a reversal of an earlier ruling supporting it, and the restaurant group behind it (Eat Drink Laugh) apparently pulled out of the plans the following year--though this did not completely scuttle the plans for other prospective owners/restaurant groups to open a dining spot there.

Long Wharf is located between the New England Aquarium and Christopher Columbus Park on the Boston waterfront.

[Earlier Articles]
Doc's Long Wharf Appears to Be Coming to the Boston Waterfront
Doc's Long Wharf Might Not Be Opening in Boston After All
The Continuing Saga of a Restaurant Planned for the Pavilion at Boston's Long Wharf

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


[Note: Please join the Friends of Boston's Hidden Restaurants Facebook Group Page to get more info on dining spots and also chat with others about Boston-area restaurants.]



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Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Stadium Sports Bar and Grill in Quincy to Become Iron Furnace

What was once a growing local group of sports bars is on the verge of completely disappearing from the landscape, as its last location is getting ready to morph into a new spot.

According to a press release from @PatrickMBoston of Maguire Promotions & Hospitality, Stadium Sports Bar and Grill in Quincy will close after business hours this Sunday (August 30), with the Hancock Street place reopening about 10 days later as Iron Furnace, a casual American restaurant and bar that features creative pub fare, an array of craft beer and cocktail options, entertainment such as comedy and karaoke, and private function rooms. The new dining and drinking spot will continue to be run by Sharon Driscoll and John O'Sullivan, who purchased the Quincy location of Stadium earlier this year and also ran The Crossing in Boston's Mission Hill, which closed this spring after being in business for approximately six years.

[September 8 update: A new message from @PatrickMBoston indicates that Iron Furnace opens its doors tomorrow at 4:00 PM.]

The name "Iron Furnace" is a nod to Quincy's role in the history of this country, notably the John Winthrop, Jr. Iron Furnace Site which was built in 1645 and was the first commercial blast iron furnace in what would become the United States.

Stadium Sports Bar and Grill once had several locations in the Greater Boston area, including downtown Boston, South Boston, Quincy, and Waltham, with talk of others coming to Lynn and Worcester (both of those apparently fell through).

The address for Stadium Sports Bar and Grill (and the upcoming Iron Furnace) is 1495 Hancock Street, Quincy, MA, 02169

[Earlier Article]
The Crossing in Boston's Mission Hill Has Purchased Stadium Sports Bar and Grill in Quincy

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


[Related article from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): Slideshow--Ten Good Places to Get Beer in the Boston Area]




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Barney Fanning's in Boston's Financial District Is Apparently Closing; The Times Planning to Move In

It looks like an Irish pub in downtown Boston may be closing, as another Irish spot is looking to move into its space.

Based on a Facebook post from The Times, the Financial District dining and drinking spot is shutting down next week to make room for new development and will be moving from its present home at 112 Broad Street to a new home at 99 Broad Street, which is where Barney Fanning's currently resides. A source in the restaurant industry has confirmed that Fanning's will indeed be closing, though it is not yet known when it might shut down or when The Times may move in. (The Littlest Bar, which is located next to The Times, is also closing next week and moving to a new home as well, though it is not known exactly where it will reopen at this point in time.)

Barney Fanning's first opened in January of 2012, taking over the space where J. A. Stats had been; a location of Stats Bar & Grille remains open on Dorchester Street in South Boston.

The address for Barney Fanning's (and the new address for The Times) is 99 Broad Street, Boston, MA, 02110.

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


[A related post from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): List of Restaurant Closings and Openings in the Boston Area]



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Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Highlights for the Week Ending August 21, 2015

A few more stories and articles centering on the Boston-area restaurant scene came out over the past week, including a popular salad spot in the Back Bay shutting down, a spacious restaurant coming to the Pru, and a landmark entertainment center with an ice cream stand possibly being torn down. In addition, our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants) included an updated review of a breakfast spot in East Boston, a photo of a pizza from a bar in Brockton, and a question on sandwiches.

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

Boston Restaurant Talk

Souper Salad in Boston's Back Bay Has Closed

Earls Kitchen + Bar to Open at the Prudential Center in Boston's Back Bay

Jody Adams, Trade Team Planning to Open New Restaurant in Boston's Back Bay

Dairy Castle/Route 1 Miniature Golf in Saugus to Be Sold; Hotel/Apartment Complex to Move In

Whole Heart Provisions to Open in Allston

Boston's Hidden Restaurants

Updated Review: Donna's Restaurant in East Boston, MA

New Photo: Pizza from Home Cafe in Brockton, MA

Question: Favorite Places for Sandwiches in the Boston Area?

Updated Review: Leggos in Holbrook, MA

New Photo: Steamers from Eastwind Lobster in Buzzards Bay, MA

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


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New England Soup Factory in Brookline Village Is Closing; Building to Be Demolished

A popular location of a dining spot that is known for its soups is getting ready to close, as the building in which it resides is going to be torn down.

Eater Boston is reporting (via a Chowhound poster and a Facebook thread) that New England Soup Factory in Brookline Village is shutting down over the coming weeks, as Children's Hospital is demolishing its Brookline Place building. The Facebook post from the eatery says that "In the next few weeks we will be making arrangements to move full time into our Newton location."

[September 3 update: According to an article in the Brookline TAB, New England Soup Factory has been told that it has to leave its Brookline Village location by October 1, with owner Marjorie Druker saying that she plans to close the shop within the next two weeks.]

[September 18 update: A phone call placed to New England Soup Factory in Brookline indicates that it has officially closed for good. (And as stated before, the Newton shop will remain open.)]

New England Soup Factory first opened in Brookline approximately 20 years ago, with its second location on Needham Street in Newton opening a few years later. In addition to soups, the dining spot also offers salads and sandwiches along with sides and desserts.

The address for this soon-to-close soup place in Brookline Village is: New England Soup Factory, 2-4 Brookline Place, Brookline, MA, 02445. Its website can be found at http://newenglandsoupfactory.com/

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


[Related article from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): Slideshow--Twelve Soups from Restaurants in the Boston Area and Beyond]



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Los Amigos in West Roxbury and Newtonville to Expand to Third Location

It looks like the people behind a pair of Mexican restaurants in the Boston area are going to be opening a third spot.

According to a job post on the Craigslist site, Los Amigos is currently hiring for its "growing taqueria," with "plans for a third coming early 2016." The upcoming eatery will join existing locations on Centre Street in West Roxbury and Walnut Street in Newtonville, though it is not known where the third location of the dining spot will be, with the listing location only saying "Newton"--and that could be referring to its Newtonville location. As soon as we find out where the new restaurant will be opening, we will post an update here.

Los Amigos is a quick-service Mexican spot that first opened in West Roxbury in January of 2012, with the Newtonville outlet opening in December of 2013. Its menu features such items as burritos, quesadillas, tacos, salad bowls, and more. (Its website can be found at http://www.amigosburritos.com/)

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


[A related post from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): List of Restaurant Closings and Openings in the Boston Area]



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Friday, August 21, 2015

Building Housing Karoun in Newtonville May Be Demolished to Make Way for New Development

A restaurant in Newton that has been in business for nearly 40 years may lose its home to a proposed mixed-use development.

The Boston Globe is reporting that plans are being made to demolish an entire block of buildings (known as the Orr Block) at the corner of Washington Street and Walnut Street in the Newtonville section of the city, with Karoun Restaurant being in one of the eight buildings that could be affected. The article says that a demolition application has already been filed with the Newton Historical Commission, with the commission having the power to delay the razing of the building for 12 months depending on several factors. (The structures can be taken down at the end of the 12 months, however.) Development plans will probably include new housing with retail space on the ground floor, and a combination of underground and above-ground parking, according to the article.

It is not yet known what the future holds for Karoun, as the Globe says it is too early in the process to determine whether businesses will be able to lease space within the new complex.

[February 9, 2016 update: The Newton Tab states that the developer looking to demolish several Newtonville buildings--including the home of Karoun--to make way for new residential and commercial space will present the project's plans to the Newtonville Area Council as well as the three city councilors from Ward 2 this Thursday (February 11).]

[May 18, 2016 update: A new article in the Newton TAB mentions that plans have now been filed for a five-story mixed-use complex that would replace the existing buildings in the Orr Block, including Karoun. with construction beginning in the spring of 2017 pending a Land Use Committee hearing on June 7 and further discussions that could go through the late fall.]

[November 23, 2016 update: A post from bldup.com shows new renderings of the proposed mixed-use development that would go into the space where Karoun and other businesses currently reside. It is still not known what might happen to the restaurant if the project is approved; as soon as we get more information, we will post another update here.]

Karoun first opened on Newbury Street in the Back Bay in 1977, moving to its present home in Newtonville a couple of years later. It is one of the few Armenian restaurants located in the Boston area.

The address for Karoun is 839 Washington Street, Newton, MA, 02460. Its website can be found at http://www.karounrestaurant.com/

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


[A related post from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): List of Restaurant Closings and Openings in the Boston Area]



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Souper Salad in Boston's Back Bay Has Closed

A pair of cafes in Boston featuring soups, salads, and sandwiches is now down to just one.

According to a poster on the Chowhound site. Souper Salad on Berkeley Street in the Back Bay is shuttered, with a sign out front saying "After a great run, Souper Salad Boston has closed this location." The sign indicates that its catering business remains in place, and the other location of the eatery--on Brookline Avenue in the Longwood section of the city--remains open.

Souper Salad is part of a local company called Fresh Concepts, which also runs Fresh City, a small group of dining spots located in the region. (Souper Salad is not to be confused with the Texas-based salad buffet chain of the same name.)

The address for this now-closed cafe in the Back Bay was: Souper Salad, 209 Berkeley Street, Boston, MA, 02116. Its website can be found at http://www.soupersaladboston.com/

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


[Related article from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): Slideshow--Twelve Sandwiches from Restaurants in the Boston Area and Elsewhere in New England]



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Amuleto Mexican Table Opens on Moody Street in Waltham

A brand new Mexican dining spot has come to Waltham's "Restaurant Row," and it moves into the space where two other Mexican restaurants had been.

According to a source within the restaurant industry, Amuleto Mexican Table opened this week on Moody Street, taking over the space where Habanero's Mexican Kitchen was, and before that, Tango Mango (a location of Tango Mango remains in operation in Newton). Very little is known about Amuleto Mexican Table at this point in time, and a menu has not yet been posted online as of yet; as soon as we find more information about the eatery, we will post an update here.

The address for this new restaurant in Waltham is: Amuleto Mexican Table, 484 Moody Street, Waltham, MA, 02453. Its website will be at http://www.amuletorestaurant.com/

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


[A related post from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): List of Restaurant Closings and Openings in the Boston Area]



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Magic Bites Bakery Is Replacing Za'atar in Arlington

A new bakery and coffee shop is on its way to Arlington, taking over the space where several other food spots have been.

According to an article in the Arlington Advocate, Magic Bites Bakery is opening on Mass. Ave., moving into the space across from Arlington High School where Za'atar had been until recently closing, and before that, Loukoumaki Bakery, Bella Moto, and Ye Old Bake Shoppe. The post says that the upcoming place will offer freshly-made European and American pastries along with sandwiches, coffee, tea, and more, with seating possibly being added later this year or in early 2016. (The article also says that Magic Bites may add ice cream to its list of options at some point.)

If all goes as planned, Magic Bites Bakery could be opening later this month.

[September 1 update: Eater Boston mentions that Magic Bites Bakery is now open.]

The address for this bakery and coffee shop in Arlington is: Magic Bites Bakery, 916 Massachusetts Avenue, Arlington, MA, 02474.

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


[Related article from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): Slideshow--Ten Items from Bakeries and Pastry Shops in the Boston Area and Beyond]



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Ruth's Chris Steak House Coming to 10 CityPoint in Waltham

A chain of upscale steakhouses with one location in the Boston area is adding a second, though plans for it appear to be in the very early stages.

Eater Boston is reporting that Ruth's Chris Steak House is looking to open at 10 CityPoint, which is a new mixed-use complex in Waltham near Route 128/95 by the Totten Pond Road/Winter Street exit. The article says that this is not a done deal, as an employee at the chain's corporate office states the proposed dining spot is in "market study" and that "It's not a definite yes, it's not a definite no." If the new location of Ruth's Chris does end up opening in Waltham, it would join another location on School Street in downtown Boston, and it would also join at least one other restaurant at 10 CityPoint--Osteria Posto.

The website for Ruth's Chris Steak House can be found at http://www.ruthschris.com/

[January 10, 2017 update: A press release states that the new location of Ruth's Chris Steak House opens at 10 CityPoint on Monday, January 23.]

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


[Related article from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): Slideshow--Twelve Classic American Dishes from Boston-Area and New England Restaurants]



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Gourmet Doughnut Shop May Be Coming to Somerville's Davis Square

It looks like the high-end doughnut craze may be continuing, with a new shop being planned for one of the busiest parts of Somerville.

According to an article from Eater Boston, restaurateur and baker Kyriakos Kouzoukas is looking to open a store in Davis Square (tentatively called Davis Square Doughnuts) that would feature "specialty, gourmet" doughnuts along with "top of the line coffee." The Summer Street shop--which would be located near Rosebud American Kitchen & Bar--is in the very early stages of planning and there doesn't appear to be a specific timeline on its opening, though a buildout of the space might take approximately four months to complete (pending final approval from the city).

Other high-end doughnut shops have opened in the Boston area over the past couple of years, including Union Square Donuts in Somerville and Blackbird Doughnuts in Boston's South End, and Kouzoukas--who once ran a chain of Central Massachusetts doughnut shops called Dozen Donuts--notes that gourmet doughnut shops are "popping up all over the country, here and there."

The address for this proposed doughnut shop in Davis Square is 377 Summer Street, Somerville, MA, 02144.

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


[Related article from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): Slideshow--Ten Items from Bakeries and Pastry Shops in the Boston Area and Beyond]



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Thursday, August 20, 2015

Earls Kitchen + Bar to Open at the Prudential Center in Boston's Back Bay

A small Canadian chain of restaurants that opened its first Boston-area location last year is planning to open a second location, and this one will be in one of the busiest parts of the city.

Zagat is reporting that Earls Kitchen + Bar is opening within the new wing of the Shops at the Prudential Center, with the upcoming location being a multi-level spot with 14,500 square feet of space. According to the article, the dining and drinking place will include a "lobby bar" on the first level, a main dining area with seating for 300 on the second level, and a rooftop patio on the third level, with 200 seats, firepits, a shade tree, and a retractable roof. If all goes as planned, expect to see the new location of Earls Kitchen + Bar open in the fall of 2016.

A location of Earls can currently be found at Assembly Row in Somerville, with that one initially opening its doors last September.

The website for Earls Kitchen + Bar can be found at http://www.earls.ca/

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[Related article from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): Slideshow--Twelve Classic American Dishes from Boston-Area and New England Restaurants]



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Jody Adams, Trade Team Planning to Open New Restaurant in Boston's Back Bay

It looks like a James Beard Award winning chef who is behind two Boston-area restaurants is partnering with the co-owners of one of the dining spots on a brand new restaurant.

Eater Boston is reporting (via a licensing board page) that Jody Adams of Rialto in Cambridge and Trade on the Boston waterfront is teaming up with fellow Trade co-owners Sean Griffing and Eric Papachristos to open an as-of-yet unnamed dining spot within Avalon at Prudential Center in the Back Bay, with the proposed restaurant including both casual and formal dining rooms as well as a bar, lounge, raw bar, and an outdoor patio. Little else is known about the place at this point in time, though more information may come out at its meeting with the city of Boston, which takes place on August 26.

In addition to being a James Beard Award winner, Jody Adams also competed in Season Two of BRAVO's "Top Chef Masters" series.

The address for this proposed restaurant in the Back Bay is 780 Boylston Street, Boston, MA, 02199.

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[A related post from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): List of Restaurant Closings and Openings in the Boston Area]



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Cinderella's in Cambridge's Central Square Getting a Major Makeover

A casual Italian restaurant in Cambridge that has been serving up pizza, pasta, and calzones for approximately two decades is in the process of a major makeover.

Eater Boston is reporting that Cinderella's in the Central Square section of the city is currently closed (except for deliveries), with the restaurant being reconcepted into a neighborhood restaurant and bar with "rustic-meets-industrial ambiance," a menu that will combine new items with existing options, 20 beers on tap, and at least one cocktail on tap as well. The reconcepting of Cinderella's seems to confirm earlier chatter that was based on job posts mentioning a revamping of a Central Square dining spot that was unnamed at the time, though EB did hint at changes coming to the dining spot last month. If all goes as planned, the rebirth of Cinderella's could officially take place in the middle of September.

[September 16 update: According to a post from UrbanDaddy, the revamped Cinderella's opens its doors on Monday (September 21).]

Cinderella's first opened its doors back in the mid-1990s.

The address for Cinderella's is 901 Main Street, Cambridge, MA, 02139.

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[A related post from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): List of Restaurant Closings and Openings in the Boston Area]



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Power Cafe to Replace Royal in Watertown

A farm-to-table restaurant in the western suburbs of Boston has closed after a very short run, and a new cafe that will be operated by people with disabilities is opening in its space.

According to a source, Royal in Watertown is no longer in business, with the dining spot apparently closing sometime last month (based on various social media posts). The Lexington Street space will not be vacant for long, however, as a new coffee shop called Power Cafe is opening there, and it will be staffed and run by people with physical and developmental disabilities, according to its Facebook page and website. If all goes as planned and they get the necessary permits/approvals, the new spot could be ready to open sometime in September.

[September 9 update: In an article from Wicked Local Watertown, Galit Schwartz of the upcoming Power Cafe says she is "realistically shooting for" an opening date sometime in early October.]

[November 20 update: Eater Boston states that Power Cafe is now open.]

Royal first opened in March of this year, moving into the space where Acapulco had been.

The address for the now-closed Royal (and new Power Cafe) is 45 Lexington Street, Watertown, MA, 02472. The website for Power Cafe can be found at http://www.thepowercafe.com/

[Earlier Article]
Royal Is Opening in Watertown

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[A related post from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): List of Restaurant Closings and Openings in the Boston Area]



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Trio in Weymouth Landing Is Closing

A couple of months ago, we reported that a South Shore restaurant that is co-owned by a state senator was in danger of losing its home because of a proposed new development going into the space. Now we have learned that the dining spot is getting ready to shut down.

The Weymouth News states that Trio in Weymouth Landing--which is owned by Senator Robert Hedlund and business partner Marko Piro Fani--is closing tomorrow (Friday, August 21), with the restaurant's Facebook page saying that "Due to the recently approved redevelopment project put forward by Josh Katzen (Landing Apartments LLC) we will be closing at midnight, Friday August 21....There are major changes in store for the Landing neighborhood, and we hope to be a part of that realized vision....We will see you down the road and stay in touch for exciting news in the future!" According to the article, the Commercial Street building in which Trio resides will be torn down along with the adjacent building that currently houses Chair Fair, with a mixed-use complex that will have apartments, retail space, and a parking garage being built at the site.

Trio opened in October of 2014, joining another restaurant (Four Square) from Hedlund and Fani that is located across the street.

[Earlier Article]
Future of Trio in Question; Plans for New Development at Weymouth Landing Site

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[A related post from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): List of Restaurant Closings and Openings in the Boston Area]



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Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Zagat Includes Tiger Mama Among Its Most Anticipated Fall Openings in the U.S.

Zagat has just come out with its list of most anticipated fall restaurant openings in the United States, and an upcoming dining spot in Boston has been included.

In the article that was posted today, Zagat includes Tiger Mama in the Fenway among its 14 picks, saying that Tiffani Faison's new restaurant looks to be a "sexier type of spot [than Sweet Cheeks Q, her other place] serving Southeast Asian cuisines...and fun cocktails at two bars, including a tiki-specific space." Tiger Mama was the only New England restaurant to make Zagat's list, though one spot in New York City--Jose Garces' Amada, an Andalusian-style tapas place--has also been included.

Tiger Mama will be located at 1363 Boylston Street in the Fenway, which is less than a block from Sweet Cheeks Q (at 1381 Boylston Street).

For a complete list of Zagat's most anticipated fall openings in America, please go to the following link:

The 14 Most Anticipated Fall Openings Across the U.S.

[Earlier Article]
Tiffani Faison to Open Tiger Mama in Boston's Fenway Neighborhood

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


[A related post from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): List of Restaurant Closings and Openings in the Boston Area]



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Dairy Castle/Route 1 Miniature Golf in Saugus to Be Sold; Hotel/Apartment Complex to Move In

A Route 1 staple that has been a center of fun and entertainment for decades is in the process of being sold, with a hotel and apartment complex moving into the space.

According to an article in Wicked Local, Route 1 Miniature Golf in Saugus, which is also home to the Dairy Castle ice cream stand, batting cages, an arcade, and its iconic orange dinosaur out front is under agreement to be purchased by Michael Touchette of MT Realty and business partner Michael Barsamian, with the plan being to have the property become part of Collins Place, a development with two buildings--one that is a hotel and a second that will be a combination hotel/luxury apartment building. In the article, Touchette says that the ice cream stand, miniature golf course, and batting cages will be shut down once he receives the necessary permits to go ahead with the project. (It is not yet known what will happen to the dinosaur.)

[September 25 update: The Boston Globe states that the Dairy Castle/Route 1 Miniature Golf complex will be closing at the end of this season, according to an announcement from the owners of the place yesterday. The article also says that the iconic orange dinosaur has not been included in the sale, and the developer who purchased the property says he would be "open" to having it remain at the site.]

[October 21 update: The Route 1 Miniature Golf/Dairy Castle complex hosted a "Thank You Throw Back" Columbus Day weekend, and an earlier post from their Facebook page indicates that the place expects to close for good either later this month or in early November, depending on the weather. (It is still not known what will become of the dinosaur.)]

[November 15 update: A phone call placed to the spot indicates that the Route 1 Miniature Golf/Dairy Castle complex closed for good this weekend, with today apparently being its last day.]

The Route 1 Miniature Golf complex first opened in 1958.

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[A related post from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): List of Restaurant Closings and Openings in the Boston Area]



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Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Highlights for the Week Ending August 14, 2015

Several more stories and articles focusing on the Boston-area restaurant scene came out over the past week, including a local roast beef place planning to go national, a chain of ice cream parlors officially disappearing from the landscape, and a seafood spot in Cambridge dealing with a zoning issue. In addition, our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants) included a new review of a bar in Brockton, a photo of a sandwich from a group of Vietnamese restaurants, and a question on pasta.

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

Boston Restaurant Talk

Roast Beast Is Planning to Go National

Shake Shack Is Coming to Boston's Seaport District

Last Brigham's in Arlington Heights Officially Disappears from the Landscape

Alive and Kicking Lobsters in Cambridge Facing Zoning Issue

LongHorn Steakhouse in Boston's Fenway Neighborhood Has Closed

Boston's Hidden Restaurants

New Review: Home Cafe in Brockton, MA

New Photo: Chinese BBQ Pork Sandwich from Bon Me in Boston, MA

Slideshow: Twelve Viewer Picks for Food from Boston-Area Restaurants

Updated Review: Victoria's Diner in Boston, MA

New Photo: Chicken Katsu from Village Sushi and Grill in Roslindale, MA

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Southern Kin Cookhouse and Bar Is Opening at Assembly Row in Somerville

It looks like a local restaurant group is going to be opening a new dining spot, and it will be coming to a mixed-use development just north of Boston.

Eater Boston is reporting (via the City of Somerville website) that Boston Nightlife Ventures plans to open Southern Kin Cookhouse and Bar at Assembly Row, with the restaurant having seating for at least 100 and the name (and its Facebook page) suggesting that it could be focusing on some type of Southern-style fare. If all goes as planned, expect to see this new spot opening sometime in the fall or winter.

[September 1 update: A new article from Eater Boston mentions that Southern Kin Cookhouse and Bar will feature such food items as blackened gator tacos and country-fried steak and it will also have more than 100 American whiskeys along with a wide variety of cocktails.]

[April 29, 2016 update: Eater Boston states that Southern Kin opens on Friday, June 3.]

Boston Nightlife Ventures is also behind such places as Griddler's, The Tap Trailhouse, Wink & Nod, and an upcoming spot called Certified Meatball Company.

The address for the upcoming Southern Kin Cookhouse and Bar is 500 Assembly Row, Somerville, MA, 02145.

Follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston


[Related article from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): Slideshow--Twelve Comfort Food Items from Boston-Area Restaurants]



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Hungry Mother in Cambridge's Kendall Square to Have Auction/Tag Sale August 23

A now-closed award-winning restaurant in Cambridge is opening back up this weekend, though not for the reason you might think.

Eater Boston mentions that Hungry Mother in the Kendall Square section of the city will be having an auction/tag sale on Sunday from 3:00 PM to 8:00 PM, where people can purchase pieces of the dining spot. The event--which is also a cocktail party--will allow folks to purchase such items as pans, cutlery, framed postcards, a host stand, light fixtures, and more.

Hungry Mother closed its doors on July 3, with owner Barry Maiden leaving the restaurant while the rest of the team stayed put with the plan being to eventually open a new dining spot there. (They also run State Park, which is located nearby at One Kendall Square.)

The address for Hungry Mother is 233 Cardinal Medeiros Avenue, Cambridge, MA, 02141.

[Earlier Article]
Hungry Mother in Cambridge's Kendall Square Is Closing

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[Note: Please join the Friends of Boston's Hidden Restaurants Facebook Group Page to get more info on dining spots and also chat with others about Boston-area restaurants.]



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