Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Al's Harvard Square Cafe Opening in Cambridge

A popular sandwich shop with locations in Boston's Financial District and Leather District is getting ready to open a third shop, with this one being in the Harvard Square section of Cambridge.

According to The Harvard Crimson, the owner of Al's State Street Cafe and Al's South Street Cafe will be opening Al's Harvard Square Cafe in the Holyoke Center on Mass. Ave. (between Dunster Street and Holyoke Street, on the eastern edge of the square). Based on the menus at the other two restaurants, Al's Harvard Square Cafe will likely offer soups, salads, and cold and hot subs, with their steak and cheese sub--a signature item at Al's--surely being on the menu.

Expect a fall opening for Al's Harvard Square Cafe.

[March 1, 2011 update: According to the Harvard Crimson, Al's Harvard Square Cafe is now open.]

The address for this new sandwich shop in Harvard Square is: Al's Harvard Square Cafe, 1350 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA, 02138.

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Update: Pinkberry Is Coming to Harvard Square in Cambridge

[Ed note: This article was been updated extensively on September 16 and October 13.]

For awhile, it had looked as though a national chain of frozen yogurt shops that had no presence in the Boston area until this summer was going to be opening a third location in the area next spring, but in September, it looked like that might no longer be happening. As of October, however, it looks like plans for a Pinkberry may be on, after all.

According to an earlier article in The Harvard Crimson, Pinkberry had apparently been looking to open on Mass. Ave. where Alpha Omega Jewelers used to be (in the heart of the square, across from the T station where Mass. Ave. and JFK Street meet). But a more recent September article from The Harvard Crimson indicated that Starbucks may be moving into the space, though that is by no means definite, either. The Crimson mentioned that a public hearing to discuss the proposed Starbucks was to be held On Thursday, September 30.

On October 13, another article in The Harvard Crimson stated that Pinkberry may indeed be coming to the space, with Starbucks being next door. This is all still in the early stages, though, so keep checking back for updates. [March 21, 2011 update: According to Grub Street Boston, Pinkberry is definitely coming to Harvard Square.]

[April 7, 2011 update: A Facebook post from The Boston Foodie has confirmed that Pinkberry is officially opening its doors in Harvard Square tonight.]

Pinkberry opened this summer in Hingham's Derby Street Shoppes, and another new location will soon be opening on Newbury Street in Boston's Back Bay. The chain features a variety of frozen yogurts, including chocolate, mango, and coconut, with many different toppings available. Fruit parfaits and smoothies are also offered at the shop.

Thanks to various posters on Chowhound for alerting us of updates on this.

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Guido's in Cambridge Has Closed

A classic "townie" restaurant and bar in Cambridge that had been in business for more than a half century has closed its doors.

According to the Cantabrigia blog, Guido's on Belmont Street (near the Watertown and Belmont borders) closed earlier this summer, apparently due to rising rents. The restaurant and watering hole, which first started out in the 1940s, featured a mix of bar food, Italian dishes, and classic American fare, including chicken wings, garlic bread, antipasto, steak tips, burgers, pork chops, veal parmigiana, shrimp scampi, ziti with meatballs, and ravioli.

The address for this now-closed restaurant and bar in Cambridge was: Guido's, 13 Belmont Street, Cambridge, MA, 02138.

Thanks to a poster on Chowhound for bringing this to our attention.

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Tian Fu in Wellesley Being Evicted to Make Room for Whole Foods

It looks like a Chinese restaurant in Wellesley that has been in business for nearly 20 years is being forced out of its location by their landlord, who is planning on bringing in a new supermarket.

According to WBZ and several other sources, Tian Fu on Washington Street is apparently being evicted today, with a Whole Foods market moving into the spot (along with the adjacent space where a Star Market used to be). WBZ mentions that one of the owners had received a letter in late July stating that they had to be out of the space by August 31, and according to the co-owner, when she asked the landlord if the lease could be extended until November and the restaurant could move into the site of a now-closed drug store in the same plaza, she was told "no" on both counts. A petition for the restaurant to stay in business has since been started, with a number of people giving a rally of support for Tian Fu last night.

More information is sure to come about the pending closing of Tian Fu, so keep checking back for updates.

[September 10 update: According to The Boston Globe, Tian Fu remains open even after being served an evictiom notice on September 1. The article mentions that a hearing on the situation is scheduled to occur on Thursday, September 16.]

[October 8 update: According to Boston.com, Whole Foods and the property manager of the space in question has worked out a deal to give Tian Fu a bit more time at their present location while the restaurant looks for a new space in which to open. The article mentions that the owners of the restaurant are looking at some sites within a couple of miles of the current location.]

[October 18 update: According to The Wellesley Townsman and Wicked Local, Tian Fu has closed its doors. The article does mention that the restaurant continues to look for a new spot to reopen in the area, but no specific space has been confirmed as of yet.]

The address for this Chinese restaurant in Wellesley is: Tian Fu, 446 Washington Street (Route 16), Wellesley, MA, 02482.

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

Family Restaurant Evicted, Whole Foods To Move In

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Monday, August 30, 2010

September, 2010 Is Hunger Action Month

Hunger Action Month arrives on September 1, 2010, and with it, the chance for folks to help fight domestic hunger. The non-profit organization behind Hunger Action Month--Feeding America--suggests a number of ways in which people can help out during September, including donations, pledges, volunteering, calling members of Congress, cooking for children, attending local events, shopping for a cause, organizing food drives, and much more.

Feeding American helps out tens of millions of people annually via a nationwide network of food banks and agencies. In Massachusetts, the Greater Boston Food Bank in the South Bay section of Boston is part of the network, as is the Worcester County Food Bank in Shrewsbury and the The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts in Hatfield.

To see how you can help, please go to Feeding America's Hunger Action Month site at:


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2nd Cup Cafe in Allston Closes; Pizza Days Takes Over Its Space

A cafe in Allston that featured premium coffees as well as lighter fare and snacks has closed its doors, and a pizza place with two other locations in the Boston area has opened in its spot.

According to a spotter on the Boston's Hidden Restaurants Facebook page, the 2nd Cup Cafe on Brighton Avenue closed down after being in business for about three years. Moving into the space is Pizza Days, which just opened for business over the past few days.

The 2nd Cup Cafe featured a variety of coffees and teas, as well as soups, salads, sandwiches (using Iggy's breads), Mediterranean items (falafel, grape leaves, hummus, tahini), muffins, bagels, croissants, cookies, and brownies. The restaurant was open for breakfast, lunch, and (early) dinner seven days a week.

Pizza Days features pizza, calzones, salads, chicken dishes, oven-toasted pita, and cinna balls. The new location in Allston joins others on Winn Street in Burlington and Boston Avenue in Medford.

The address for Pizza Days is: Pizza Days, 111 Brighton Avenue, Allston, MA, 02134. The phone number is (617) 787-7992. And their website can be found at: http://www.pizzadays.us/

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Wagamama Plans Major Expansion in the Boston Area

A small global chain of Japanese noodle houses is looking to continue its expansion into the Boston area, with a number of locations possibly opening up over the next few years.

According to The Financial Times, Wagamama is planning to open ten more restaurants in and around Boston by the end of 2013, having the dining spots join the three that are already open in Faneuil Hall in downtown Boston, the Prudential Center in the Back Bay, and Harvard Square in Cambridge. Currently, these are the only three locations that can be found in the entire United States. Other Wagamama restaurants can be found in the United Kingdom, Denmark, Greece, Turkey, Kuwait, New Zealand, Australia, and several other countries.

Wagamama's restaurants are modeled after traditional Japanese ramen bars, with such items offered as ramen, chilli men, kare noodle, teppan, and rice dishes. An interesting side note about the chain is the fact that orders are taken via handheld computers and sent to the kitchen electronically.

For more information about Wagamama's planned expansion in the Boston area, please go to the Financial Times link below.

Wagamama confident on US

Wagamama's website can be found at http://www.wagamama.us/

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b.good Closes Its Brookline Location

An expanding local chain of burger places has contracted just a bit, as its Brookline location has closed.

According to their Facebook page, b.good has decided to shut down their restaurant on Harvard Street, citing the fact that the location never reached the levels of their other spots. The Brookline b.good first opened about three years ago.

The b.good Facebook note does mention that their upcoming location on Washington Street in downtown Boston should be opening in the next couple of weeks, and that the folks who worked at the Brookline restaurant will be working in the new spot.

b.good has three locations in the Back Bay of Boston (Mass. Ave., Newbury Street, and Dartmouth Street), one in the Harvard Square section of Cambridge (Dunster Street), one at Legacy Place in Dedham, and one in the Derby Street Shoppes in Hingham.

The address for the now-closed b.good in Brookline was: b.good, 455 Harvard Street,
Brookline, MA, 02446. The website for the b.good chain is at: http://www.bgood.com/

For more information on the closing of b.good in Brookline, please go to their Facebook page below:


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W Boston Hotel (Where Market by Jean-Georges Is Located) May Be in Danger of Foreclosure

A hotel and condominium complex in downtown Boston that contains an elegant restaurant with a three-star Michelin chef behind it may end up being foreclosed.

According to the Boston Herald, Prudential Insurance is trying to foreclose on the now-bankrupt W Boston Hotel and Residences on Stuart Street in the Theatre District, though the developer indicates that a viable bankruptcy reorganization for the building is in the works. The article mentions that a court hearing in the case will be held in November.

The W Boston Hotel and Residences is home to Market by Jean-Georges, which opened last fall at the same time the hotel opened. Market by Jean-Georges is a casual upscale restaurant that focuses on fresh, local, seasonal ingredients, featuring a number of seafood dishes as well as steak, lamb chops, pizza, and more. The person behind the restaurant is famed chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten, who is also behind award-winning dining spots such as Jean Georges Restaurant at Columbus Circle in Manhattan.

There is no indication at this time that Market by Jean-Georges will be affected by the bankruptcy and possible foreclosure. (If anything changes, we will post an update here.)

The address for Market by Jean-Georges (as well as the W Boston Hotel and Residences) is 100 Stuart Street, Boston, MA, 02116. the phone number for the restaurant is (617) 310-6790. And the website can be found at: http://www.marketbyjgboston.com/

For more information on the possible foreclosure of the W Boston Hotel and Residences in the Theatre District, please go to the Boston Herald link below.

W Boston faces foreclosure

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Pavia Italian Cuisine and Catering Opening in Boston's Financial District

A new restaurant looks to be opening in the Financial District of Boston, moving into the space where a breakfast and lunch spot recently closed.

According to the EveryBlock Boston site, Pavia Italian Cuisine and Catering is going to open on Water Street where the Olde Boston Cafe used to be until shutting down last month. An earlier post on the Chowhound site indicates that Pavia will be an Italian restaurant (which makes sense, as Pavia is the name of a town in Northern Italy, just south of Milan).

The Olde Boston Cafe had been in business in this space for less than half a year, with a location of the Boloco chain being in this spot before the Olde Boston Cafe.

[November 15 update: According to Boston.com, Pavia is now open. The menu at the restaurant's website shows such items as salads, pasta, pizza, and calzones.

The address for this new restaurant in the Financial District is: Pavia Italian Cuisine and Catering, 82 Water Street, Boston, MA, 02109. The website can be found at: http://getpavia.com/

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Friday, August 27, 2010

Phantom Gourmet Food Festival to Be Held in Boston Saturday, September 25, 2010

The Phantom Gourmet Food Festival is returning to Boston once again, coming to Lansdowne and Ipswich Streets next to Fenway Park on Saturday, September 25, from noon to 5:00 PM. This year, there will be some newcomers participating, as well as restaurants that have been at past festivals. Included will be such places as Al's State Street Cafe, Amrheins, Capone's Pizzeria, Danish Pastry House, Firebox BBQ, Harrow's Chicken Pies, House of Blues, the Maine Diner, New Bridge Cafe, Spike's Junkyard Dogs, Windy City Eats, and many more.

Tickets to the 2010 Phantom Gourmet Food Festival cost $40 in advance and $50 at the event, with tickets including entrance to the streets and outdoor bars, parties at the clubs, and food samplings (beverages are extra). Please note that this is a 21-plus event

For more information on the 2010 Phantom Gourmet Food Festival, please go to the Phantom Gourmet link below.


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Update: Ivy and Stoddard's Remain Open; Bankruptcy Applies to Ivy Only

Earlier this month, we had reported on Ivy Restaurant Group's bankruptcy filing. We now have a bit more information on the situation concerning the two restaurants that the group is behind. According to a note sent to us from the Stoddard's Pub Twitter page, both Ivy and Stoddard's remain open, with the Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing applying only to Ivy. The note went on to say that the filing will not affect daily operations of the restaurant.

Ivy is an upscale Italian cafe on Temple Place in downtown Boston, while Stoddard's Fine Food and Ale is a gastropub-style spot that opened this past spring and is also located on Temple (Ivy has been in business since the latter part of 2005).

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Tico (A New Michael Schlow Restaurant) Is Coming to Boston

It looks like a well-known Boston chef and restaurant owner is going to be opening a new dining spot in the city.

According to the Boston edition of Zagat Buzz, Michael Schlow is planning to open Tico, a new restaurant that looks like it may feature Central American cuisine. [October 4 update: A new post by Zagat Buzz indicates that Tico will be a dining spot with Latin American and Mexican influences. An earlier rumor of Tico opening in the Seaport District can be disregarded, as Zagat Buzz mentions that Tico will open in the Back Bay where the Cottonwood Cafe had been until closing early this summer. Expect an early 2011 opening for this restaurant. The address for the upcoming Tico will be: Tico, 222 Berkeley Street, Boston, MA, 02116.]

[October 15 update: According to Boston Herald, Tico will be offering both lunch and dinner, with the lunch menu including such items salads, tacos, and sandwiches, and the dinner menu including snacks and small plates.]

[February 7, 2011 update: According to UrbanDaddy, Tico is going to be opening this Wednesday (February 9).]

Michael Schlow is the owner and executive chef of Radius in the Financial District of Boston, Via Matta in Park Plaza, and Alta Strada in Wellesley. He is also an author and has appeared on a number of food-based TV shows, including Good Morning America (more info on Michael Schlow can be found at http://www.michaelschlow.com/).

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Thursday, August 26, 2010

News Elsewhere: Cape Land and Sea Harvest to Be Held September 24-26, 2010

A celebration of the use of local foods is coming to Cape Cod in September, with a number of restaurants across the Cape participating.

The fifth annual Cape Land and Sea Harvest (CLASH) will be held from Friday, September 24 to Sunday, September 26, 2010, and all kinds of events will be going on throughout the three days. Included will be tastings, tours, a season-ending farmers market, a farm to table event, and an ice cream ScoopApalooza. Participating restaurants include The Barnstable Restaurant and Tavern in Barnstable, the Bee-Hive Tavern in East Sandwich, Blackfish in Truro, Cape Sea Grille in Harwich Port, Harvest Gallery Wine Bar in Dennis, The Regatta of Cotuit in Cotuit, Tiny's in Provincetown, The Wicked Oyster in Wellfleet, and more.

For more information on the fifth annual Cape Land and Sea Harvest, please go to the following link:


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Wisteria in Allston Is Closed

It looks like a Taiwanese restaurant in the Hong Kong Market (formerly Super 88) in Allston has closed, and the people behind the place apparently cannot be found.

According to posters on Chowhound, Wisteria appears to be shut down, and an inspection result of the place on the City of Boston website shows a variety of violations, one of which is absence of an owner or anyone else in charge of the restaurant. Out of the ten violations, six were considered critical, according to the report. (Thanks to one of the Chowhound posters for putting up this link.)

In recent times, there had been three locations of Wisteria in the Boston area, with the Back Bay and East Cambridge restaurants now being closed as well.

The address for this now-closed Taiwanese in Allston was: Wisteria, 1095 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA, 02215.

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C.F. Donovan's Space in Dorchester Bought by McKenna's Cafe

The space where a Dorchester restaurant and bar used to be will soon have a dining spot once again, and the the owner happens to be the person behind an eatery across the street.

According to the Dorchester Reporter, the owner of McKenna's Cafe on Savin Hill Avenue has purchased the space formerly occupied by C.F. Donovan's, which closed in the fall of 2009. The article mentions that the new spot will be a modern and trendy restaurant that will look to be popular with both local folks in Savin Hill and people from outside of the neighborhood.

C.F. Donovan's had been a popular neighborhood spot that featured classic American dishes and a variety of beers. The restaurant closed last November and its other proposed location in Hyde Park never got off the ground (a new eatery may be moving into that space as well).

Both McKenna's Cafe and C.F. Donovan's have been featured on our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants). Links to the reviews are below:



The address for this new restaurant, which does not appear to have a name yet, will be 112 Savin Hill Avenue, Dorchester, MA 02125.

For more information on the opening of a new restaurant where C.F. Donovan's had been, please go to the Dorchester Reporter link below:

Donovan's eatery purchased in sidewalk auction

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International Chocolate Day: September 13, 2010

A day of festivities for chocolate lovers is on the way, with one Boston restaurant teaming up with a Back Bay chocolatier to celebrate the day.

International Chocolate Day is September 13, 2010, and the Bristol Lounge, which is within the Four Seasons Hotel on Boylston Street across from the Public Garden, will be featuring a dessert buffet presented by Newbury Street's Hotel Chocolat. The buffet will include such items as cocktail truffles, caramel cubes, cocoa powdered Brazil nuts, miniature marshmallows, and toffee, with folks from Hotel Chocolat on hand to help out and answer any questions. In addition to the buffet, chocolate martinis will also be offered.

Other Boston-area restaurants and shops will certainly be participating in International Chocolate Day, so keep checking back for updates.

For more on the Bristol Lounge's chocolate celebration on September 13, please go to the following press release link:

Celebrate International Chocolate Day at The Bristol Lounge at Four Seasons Hotel Boston on September 13

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Nickel's Grille in Woburn Has Closed

A restaurant in Woburn that featured classic American fare has apparently closed its doors after being in business for less than a year.

According to a poster on Yelp, Nickel's Grille on Mishawum Road is shuttered, with a sign on the door saying "Closed - Thank you for your patronage." In addition, one of our readers emailed us, asking if the restaurant were shut down, as the parking lot has been empty for several days now. A call placed to Nickel's Grille went unanswered (and with no voicemail), a check on their website shows a mostly blank page with the page title labeled "offline," and their Twitter page no longer exists.

Nickel's Grille opened in December of 2009, replacing T.G.I. Friday's, which closed a few weeks earlier. The restaurant's menu featured such items as nachos, burgers, steaks, seafood, and pasta dishes.

The address for this restaurant in Woburn was: Nickel's Grille, 244 Mishawum Road, Woburn, MA, 01801.

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Wednesday, August 25, 2010

California Pizza Kitchen Opening in Braintree

A national chain of pizza restaurants with four locations in Massachusetts is about to open a fifth spot south of Boston.

According to The Patriot Ledger, California Pizza Kitchen will be opening at the South Shore Plaza in Braintree. The new spot will have a capacity of 186, and while it will have a full liquor license, there won't be an actual bar within the restaurant--just some counter seats by the service bar. Expect a January opening for the new restaurant.

[January 25, 2011, update: According to businesswire.com, the new California Pizza Kitchen in Braintree is now open for business.]

The California Pizza Kitchen chain, which has more than 250 restaurants throughout the United States and in other countries, features soups, salads, pizza, pasta dishes, sandwiches, and more on their menu. Currently, locations in the local area can be found in Boston, Cambridge, Natick, and Wellesley.

the address for this new pizza restaurant in Braintree is: California Pizza Kitchen, 250 Granite Street (South Shore Plaza), Braintree, MA, 02184.

For more information on the opening of California Pizza Kitchen in Braintree, please go to the Patriot Ledger link below.

South Shore Plaza gets ninth liquor license at pizza restaurant

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Deco Mediterranean Restaurant Opening in Somerville

A new Mediterranean restaurant is going to be opening in Somerville, moving into the spot where a popular bar and music club used to be.

According to the Somerville Journal and Wicked Local, Deco is looking to open on Washington Street (between Beacon Street and the Cambridge border) where The Kirkland Cafe resided until closing in the spring of 2007. The person who is planning to open Deco is also behind Tapeo Restaurant and Tapas Bar, a Spanish restaurant on Newbury Street in Boston's Back Bay, Pazzo, an Italian and Mediterranean dining spot also on Newbury Street, and Bacco Ristorante and Bar, an Italian restaurant on Salem Street in the North End of Boston. It appears that Deco will be a family-friendly restaurant with a capacity of 113, according to the article. The eatery could be open by the upcoming winter, if all goes as planned.

[December 6, 2011 update: More than 15 months after first writing about it, Deco is still not open, but according to Eater Boston, work is currently being done on the space and it could be open by late next spring.]

The address for this new Mediterranean restaurant coming to Somerville will be: Deco, 425 Washington Street, Somerville, MA, 02143.

For more information on the opening of Deco, please go to the Somerville Journal/Wicked Local link below.

Somerville's Kirkland bar to reopen as Deco Mediterranean restaurant

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Q Restaurant Opening in Downtown Boston Near Chinatown

A Mongolian hot pot restaurant is soon going to be opening in downtown Boston, between Chinatown and Boston Common.

According to the Boston Herald, Q Restaurant is looking to open in the Archstone Boston Common building on Washington Street along the western edge of Chinatown. The person behind this new eatery is also the owner of Little Q Hot Pot, which had been located in Quincy Center but moved to East Arlington in early May of this year. The Herald mentions that Q Restaurant will have a capacity of just under 80, and will have a sushi bar and lounge as well as tables for hot pot dishes.

[September 17 update: According to an email from the UrbanDaddy site, Q Restaurant will be having a soft opening on Monday, September 20.]

The address for this new Asian restaurant in downtown Boston will be: Q Restaurant, 660 Washington Street, Boston, MA, 02111. (The address for Little Q Hot Pot in East Arlington is: Little Q Hot Pot, 196 Massachusetts Avenue, Arlington, MA, 02474.)

For more information on the opening of Q Restaurant in Boston, please go to the Boston Herald link below.

On menu: 'Food people love to eat'
Also, hot-pot eatery, book on hospitality

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Massachusetts Farmers' Market Week Being Held from August 22-28, 2010

For those of you who love farm stands and farmers' markets, an event being held this week in Massachusetts may be of particular interest to you.

According to the official website of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Farmers' Market Week is being held from now through Saturday, August 28, with a variety of events and activities going on throughout the state. Some of the events coming up include a chance for shoppers to win a basket of market products at the Arlington Farmers' Market on Wednesday, August 25; music, tastings of herb salsa and pesto, flower arrangement demonstrations, and live alpacas and rabbits at the Harwich Farmers Market on Thursday, August 26; recipe tips and giveaways at the Ashmont Farmers' Market in Dorchester on Friday, August 27; and a food demonstration and live, local music at the Greenfield Farmers' Market on Saturday, August 28.

A detailed list of events and activities for the 2010 Massachusetts Farmers' Market Week can be found at the following web page (please note that it is a PDF file).


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Zinneken's Belgian Waffles Bakery Opening in Harvard Square, Cambridge

It looks like a Belgian waffles bakery and cafe will soon be opening in Cambridge.

According to their Facebook page, Zinneken's is planning to open in Harvard Square, bringing to the area an eatery that features Belgian waffles, Belgian chocolate, desserts, coffee, and more. The dining spot will include outdoor seating and table service, and it will be open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

[Update: For a sneak peek at the menu for Zinneken's, please go to the following link at Lingbo Li's blog: Zinneken's in Harvard Square Brings You Belgian Waffles]

[April 14, 2011 update: According to The Harvard Crimson, Zinneken's is looking to open by July 1 in the space where Arrow Street Crepes used to be. Based on that information, it appears that the address for this upcoming Belgian waffles bakery and cafe will be: Zinneken's, 1 Arrow Street, Cambridge, MA, 02138.]

[September 15, 2011 update: According to a new article in The Harvard Crimson, Zinneken's is having a soft opening tonight and a grand opening tomorrow. The article mentions that hours for Zinneken's will be 7:30 AM to 12 AM daily.]

Golden Garden Opens in Belmont

A new Chinese restaurant has opened in Belmont, moving into the space where a Japanese and Chinese dining spot used to be.

According to a poster on the Chowhound site, Golden Garden is now open on Concord Avenue where Osaka resided from 2007 until recently (several other eateries have been in this spot as well over the past decade or two). The poster mentions that the menu at Golden Garden includes such dishes as dumplings, dan dan noodles, five-flavored beef, sauteed snail, dried chicken with chili sauce, and sauteed potato with sour sauce. Also mentioned is the fact that the menu has a Szechuan section as well.

The address for this new Chinese restaurant in Belmont is: Golden Garden, 63 Concord Avenue, Belmont, MA, 02478. (This is just west of the Cambridge line, just under a mile east of Belmont Center.)

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The Fourth Annual A Taste of Roslindale Coming September 23, 2010

A culinary event returns to Roslindale in September, and once again a number of area restaurants will be participating.

The fourth annual A Taste of Roslindale will be held on Thursday, September 23, 2010, from 6:30 PM to 9:00 PM at St. Nectarios Church in Roslindale Village. More than 20 dining spots in the local area will be involved in this year's event, and there will also be cooking demonstrations by chefs, live music, raffles, and auctions.

Tickets for the 2010 Taste of Roslindale are $25 in advance, and $30 at the door.

Once again, this event will be raising money for both Roslindale Village Main Street and the Roslindale Food Pantry.

For more information on the fourth annual A Taste of Roslindale, please go to the link below.


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Monday, August 23, 2010

Harvest of India Fine Indian Bistro Opening in Cambridge

A new Indian restaurant is getting ready to open in Cambridge, taking over the space where an Italian eatery used to be.

According to notes from a City of Cambridge License Commission General Hearing, Harvest of India Fine Indian Bistro is going to be opening on Mass. Ave. between Harvard Square and Central Square, moving into the spot that was formerly home to Trattoria Il Panino Express, which closed last summer (Il Panino's Hanover Street location in Boston's North End remains open). The notes from the hearing indicate that Harvest of India Fine Indian Bistro will have a capacity of 39 and will offer food and non-alcoholic beverages. Hours for the restaurant look to be from 11:00 AM to 11:00 PM seven days a week.

[October 21 update: Harvest of India is now open.]

The address for this new Indian restaurant in Cambridge is: Harvest of India Fine Indian Bistro, 1001 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA, 02138.

Thanks to a poster on Chowhound for bringing this to our attention.

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Thursday, August 19, 2010

Boston Wine Week to Be Held September 20-26, 2010

The first ever Boston Wine Week is coming to the area, with a variety of restaurants taking part in the event.

An email sent to us by Marlo Marketing Communications mentions that Boston Wine Week will be held from September 20-26 at such restaurants as Bin 26 Enoteca, Clink, The Hungry i, Lala Rokh, Locke-Ober, Woodward, and more. The week-long celebration will feature handcrafted wines from around the world, served by the glass or by the bottle at participating restaurants. Glasses of wine will be $9, with bottles being $32.

In addition to the offering of various wines, there will also be some special events with local wine experts, where patrons can gather together and learn more about wines via discussions and tastings.

For more information on the first annual Boston Wine Week, please go to: http://www.bostonwineweek.com/

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Taste of Chelsea to Be Held September 20, 2010

A culinary event is coming to Boston's neighbor to the north next month, with a number of area restaurants participating.

According to the Chelsea Record, the seventh annual Taste of Chelsea will take place on Monday, September 20 at 62 Broadway, just south of the downtown section of the city. The event, which will be held from 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM, will feature such dining spots as Antonia's by the Beach, Chelsea City Cafe, Crusty Crumpet Bakery, Kowloon, Olivia's Organics, Out of Asia, Pollo Campero, Terra Nova Grille, Tu Casa, and the Winthrop Center Cafe.

The 2010 Taste of Chelsea will help raise funds for HarborCOV, which provides support services to survivors of domestic violence. (The Chelsea Record mentions that last year's Taste of Chelsea raised nearly $50,000 for HarborCOV.)

Tickets to the event are $30 in advance ($35 at the door), with groups of 10 or more people being able to buy tickets for $25 each.

For more information on the 2010 Taste of Chelsea, please go to the Chelsea Record link below.

7th Annual Taste of Chelsea set for September 20

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Match Burgers and Martinis in the Back Bay Is No Longer Serving Burgers (Or Any Other Food)

It appears that a restaurant and lounge in Boston's Back Bay has decided to stop serving food, at least for the time being.

According to both Grub Street Boston and Yelp, Match Burgers and Martinis on Mass. Ave. has closed their kitchen and will no longer be serving burgers, macaroni and cheese, steaks, pizza, or any other food. Grub Street Boston indicates that Match will remain open for drinks Thursday through Saturday.

Match, which first opened about five years ago, is primarily known as a trendy, chic place that people tend to go to for their martinis and other cocktails.

The address for Match is: Match Burgers and Martinis, 94 Massachusetts Avenue, Boston, MA, 02215. The phone number is (617) 247-9922.

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Bon Appetit Picks Menton in Boston As One of the 10 Best New Restaurants in the United States

A popular food magazine has just come out with its picks for best new restaurants in the United States, and a Boston dining spot has made the list.

According to the magazine's website, Menton on Congress Street in the Fort Point neighborhood of the city is one of 10 picks for best new restaurants in the country. Menton, which is owned by celebrity chef Barbara Lynch, was mentioned in the article as a place that has "one of the country's best sommeliers" and proves that "fine dining is in fact not dead in America."

One other dining spot that was picked by Bon Appetit is Marea on Central Park South in New York City, which is the only other restaurant in the Northeast that made the list.

For more information on Bon Appetit's list of the top 10 new restaurants in the United States (including descriptions of Menton and the other dining spots on the list), please go to the link below.

The 10 Best New Restaurants in America

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Food Trucks Coming to the SoWa Open Market Every Sunday, Starting August 29

The Food Truck Festival may be over, but SoWa will soon be "home" to food trucks on a regular basis.

According to the SoWa Open Market's Facebook page, several food trucks will be stationed at the site every Sunday, beginning on August 29. The page mentions that Boston Frosty, Boston Speed Dogs, Clover, Concept Carts, Fillbelly's, Pizza Barbone, and Trolley Dogs have already signed on, with more possibly coming.

The 1st Annual Food Truck Festival was held on Sunday, August 8, with thousands of people showing up for the event. The site, which is at 460 Harrison Avenue, is also the home to a variety of vendors, including artists, craftspeople, farmers, food vendors, and musicians.

For more information on the SoWa Open Market (including any updates on the coming of the food trucks), please go to the Facebook link above or the SoWa Open Market website below:


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10 Worst Restaurant Names in the Country Includes Three with a Boston-Area Presence

The Chicago Tribune has just come out with a list of the 10 worst restaurant names in the country, and three of them can be found in the Boston area (two of which are medium-sized chains).

According to the article, Blunch in Boston's South End, Fuddruckers (various locations, including Methuen, North Andover, Reading, and Saugus), and Ruth's Chris Steak House (various locations, including downtown Boston) are three dining spots on the worst names list, in addition to such places as Crapitto's Cuccina Italiana in Houston, Donut Field in Mountain View, CA, and WD-50 in New York City. Others on the list include The Dead Fish in Crockett, CA, and Rat's Restaurant in Hamilton, NJ.

For more on the Chicago Tribune's picks for worst restaurant names in the country, including brief descriptions and explanations of each spot, please go to the link below.

10 worst restaurant names in the country

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Chez Jacky in Brighton Is Now Jacky's Table

It looks like a casual French bistro that recently opened in Brighton has undergone a name change.

According to their Facebook page, Chez Jacky on Commonwealth Avenue has become Jacky's Table. According to their page, the reason behind the name change is because the new name more accurately reflects their overall concept, or as they put it, "service comme a la maison." Other than the name change, the restaurant itself appears to remain the same.

Jacky's Table is part of a small group of French restaurants in the Boston area that includes Petit Robert Bistro in the South End of Boston, Kenmore Square, and Needham, and soon, Petit Robert Central, which is coming to Downtown Crossing.

The address for this French bistro in Brighton is: Jacky's Table, 1414 Commonwealth Avenue, Brighton, MA, 02135. Their phone number is (617) 274-8687.

Thanks to the EveryBlock Boston site for bringing Chez Jacky's name change to our attention.

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Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Joe V's in the South End of Boston to Close

Just a quick update to the earlier story about Jimmy's moving into the old B & D Deli in Brookline; it turns out that the person behind Jimmy's, who also owns Joe V's in the South End of Boston, will be closing that restaurant, according to the Boston Globe.

Joe V's, which is located on Shawmut Avenue, is a tiny neighborhood restaurant that has been serving American and Italian fare to diners since moving into the space about seven years ago (the quirky American restaurant On the Park resided in the spot before Joe V's). The menu at Joe V's has featured such items as pizza, Italian sausage, gnocchi, chicken parmesan, spaghetti and meatballs, and steak tips.

It appears that the upcoming Jimmy's in Brookline will also have a menu that leans toward Italian cuisine.

The address for this soon-to-close restaurant in the South End of Boston is: Joe V's, 315 Shawmut Avenue, Boston, MA, 02118.

For more information on the closing of Joe V's (as well as the opening of Jimmy's in Brookline), please go to the Boston Globe link below.

New restaurant moving into B&D Deli's old spot in Brookline

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Armenian Street Fair and Festival Coming to Watertown September 11-12, 2010

A event that celebrates and showcases the Boston-area Armenian community is coming to Watertown in September, and it will include traditional Armenian food as well as live music and more.

An email sent to us by Image Unlimited Communications indicates that the first ever Armenian Street Fair & Festival will be held on Saturday, September 11 and Sunday, September 12 at The Armenian Cultural and Educational Center (ACEC) on Nichols Avenue in East Watertown. The event will feature Armenian dishes from food vendors such as Eastern Lamejun, Fastachi, and Massis Bakery, and there will also be an art exhibit, an historical exhibit, music from several performers, and a children's section.

Hours for the event will be 10:00 AM to 11:00 PM on Saturday, September 11, and 12:00 PM to 7:00 PM on Sunday, September 12. Ticket prices are $10 for adults for a one-day pass ($15 for both days) and $4 for children between the ages of 2 and 12 for a one-day pass ($6 for both days). Children under the age of 2 are free.

For more information on the Armenian Street Fair & Festival in Watertown, please go to the link below.


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Uchef Opens in Allston

A Brazilian restaurant and bakery has just opened its doors in Allston, bringing to the neighborhood a place to get quick-food items and various breads and cakes. Uchef is now open on Brighton Avenue, just west of Harvard Avenue in the space where the Mexican dining spot Burritos on Fire used to be until closing in early 2009.

Based on the menu page at the Foodler site, Uchef features such inexpensive fast-food items as beef snack pies, breaded hot dogs, chicken croquettes, and grilled cheese sandwiches. Also on the menu are baked goods such as Brazilian rolls, bread filled with coconut, orange cake, and yucca with coconut cake. Desserts include flan, mango mousse, corn pudding, and a pineapple torte. Uchef features a number of juice options, such as acai, wild cherry, cocoa, guava, and passion fruit. Prices for most food items are extremely cheap, with most dishes being under $5.

The address for this new Brazilian eatery in Allston is: Uchef, 174 Brighton Ave, Allston, MA, 02134.

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Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Jimmy's Is Opening in the Old B and D Deli Space in Brookline

An Italian restaurant is coming to Brookline, and it will be moving into the space where a delicatessen resided until closing about five years ago.

According to the Brookline TAB blog, Jimmy's will be opening on Beacon Street in Washington Square, taking over the spot where B & D Deli used to be. Over the past few years, there was much speculation about restaurants moving into this space, but it remained empty since the summer of 2005.

The blog entry mentions that Jimmy's will be a casual neighborhood dining spot that focuses on Italian fare, and the restaurant will serve beer, wine, and cocktails, as it has received an all-kinds liquor license. At the present time, it is not known when Jimmy's might be opening.

[July 7, 2011 update: According to Boston.com, Jimmy's is now open. The article mentions that in addition to Italian meals, the new restaurant is also offering pizza that is made in a stone oven. Jimmy's is open nightly for dinner, and it will also be open for lunch starting tomorrow.]

According to one of our Twitter followers from the Visiting Boston site, the owner of Jimmy's had also been behind the now-closed Joe V's, a small neighborhood restaurant on Shawmut Avenue in the South End of Boston.

The address for this new Italian restaurant in Brookline is: Jimmy's, 1653 Beacon Street, Brookline, MA, 02445.

State Senator Robert Hedlund Opening Four Square Restaurant in Weymouth Landing

A state senator who represents parts of the South Shore is going to be getting into the restaurant business soon, at least as an owner.

According to the Braintree Forum and Wicked Local, Senator Robert Hedlund (R-Weymouth) is planning on opening Four Square in Weymouth Landing, though he will not play an active role in the eatery. Four Square will move into the space along the Braintree section of Commercial Street (just north of the Weymouth border) where Helen's Cafe, a restaurant that featured steak tips, sandwiches, and pizza, had been for a number of decades. Four Square will feature Italian dishes, classic American cuisine, and comfort food (the restaurant's Facebook page mentions burgers, pizza, sandwiches, and seafood), with the 70-seat dining spot being open for lunch and dinner. A bar will also be located within the restaurant, with wine and craft beer available.

[February 16, 2011 update: According to the restaurant's Facebook page, Four Square is now open.]

The address for this new restaurant in Weymouth Landing is: Four Square, 16 Commercial Street, Braintree, MA, 02184.

For more information on the opening of Four Square, please go to the Braintree Forum/Wicked Local link below.

Sen. Hedlund to open Weymouth Landing restaurant

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Trattoria Sablone's in Marblehead Has Closed

An Italian restaurant on the North Shore that had been in business for more than half a century (including three years in its newest location) has closed its doors.

According to the Marblehead Reporter and Wicked Local, Trattoria Sablone's on Smith Street in Marblehead shut down loast month, citing the poor economy as a reason for its closing. Trattoria Sablone's opened in Marblehead about three years ago, bringing back to life a restaurant that had resided in East Boston for 55 years until closing in 2002. The menu featured such classic Italian dishes as gnocchi, ravioli, chicken marsala, eggplant parmigiana, veal limone, lamb chops, and clams, mussels, and shrimp over linguine.

Even though Sablone's is now closed, the article mentions that the restaurant was given an extension of its liquor license until the end of September in order to ease the process of selling the business.

The address for this now-closed restaurant in Marblehead was: Trattoria Sablone's, 33 Smith Street, Marblehead, MA, 01945.

For more information on the closing of Sablone's, please go to the Marblehead Reporter/Wicked Local link below.

Difficult economy claims Marblehead eatery Trattoria Sablone's

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Five Guys Wins Best Burger Category in Zagat Fast Food Survey

Zagat has just announced the results of its fast food survey, and a chain with an increasing presence in the Boston area came out on top in the "best burger" category.

According to a press release on the survey, Virginia-based Five Guys beat out such chains as In-N-Out Burger and Wendy's, and also came in third place for best French fries. (Wendy's won in the overall "top food" category.) The survey, which included nearly 100 major fast food chains and just under 40 full service chains, was based on the votes of more than 6,500 diners who made their picks via the Zagat site.

As recently as three years ago, Five Guys had no locations in the Boston area, but today the burger chain has a number of restaurants around the region, including spots in Dedham, Foxborough, Gloucester, Marlborough, Natick, Randolph, Swampscott, and Walpole, and another location soon coming to Framingham.

For more on the Zagat fast food survey, please go to the link below.


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Hamersley's Bistro Makes TripAdvisor's List of Top 10 Celebrity Chef-Owned Restaurants in the United States

A popular website that features reader reviews and opinions on hotels, restaurants, and more has just come out with a list of top celebrity chef-owned restaurants in the United States, and a Boston dining spot has made the list.

According to Reuters, Hamersley's Bistro on Tremont Street in the South End came in at #7 on the list of top 10 celebrity chef-owned restaurants. It was the only New England restaurant to make the list, though two restaurants in New York City were included (Per Se came in at #1 and Daniel came in at #2). TripAdvisor indicates that Hamersley's Bistro's focus on local, seasonal ingredients as well as its energetic and cheerful atmosphere are a couple of reasons why the restaurant made the list.

Hamersley's Bistro, which is owned by Gordon Hamersley, has been in operation for more than 20 years.

For more information on TripAdvisor's list of top 10 celebrity chef-owned restaurants in the United States, please go to the Reuters link below.

World chefs: Top 10 celebrity chef-owned restaurants in U.S.

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Monday, August 16, 2010

Stoughton Theater Reopening; Will Offer Food and Possibly Alcohol

An historic theater south of Boston that closed nearly three years ago is going to be reopening, and it looks like it may once again have a snack bar with burgers, hot dogs, and more--though the serving of alcohol is not a definite as of yet.

According to the Stoughton Journal and Wicked Local, the cinema in Stoughton Center is going to reopen under the original name--the State Theatre--replacing the Stoughton Cinema Pub that closed in late 2007. The person behind the planned opening of the State Theatre is hoping to have a full-service snack bar on the premises, and is currently weighing options for what will be offered, but it seems that burgers, dogs, and perhaps pizza may be options. He is also looking into the availability of a liquor license so beer and wine can be served at the theatre once again.

The article mentions that classic movies and drive-in films may be shown at the State Theatre once it opens, and live performances by bands, comedians, and others will also be part of the plan.

The address for the upcoiming theatre will be: State Theatre, 807 Washington Street, Stoughton, MA, 02072.

For more information on the planned opening of the theatre, please go to the Stoughton Journal/Wicked Local link below.

SNYDER'S STOUGHTON: Stoughton theater to reopen

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Gitlo's in Allston Has Closed

It looks like a tiny dim sum spot in Allston has closed its doors after being in business for a little less than three years.

According to a poster on the Chowhound site, Gitlo's Dim Sum Bakery at 164 Brighton Avenue has shut down, with a new Greek dining spot apparently moving into the space. Calls placed to Gitlo's have gone unanswered, their Facebook page has been dormant for awhile, and a "spotter" for us who works in Allston and regularly gives us information on the neighborhood has confirmed that it has indeed closed.

Since opening in late 2007, Gitlo's Dim Sum Bakery has been known as a no-frills place featuring dim sum every day for lunch and dinner. The restaurant has offered such dim sum items as shumai, dumplings, homemade clear noodles, daikon cake, and custard bun.

Before Gitlo's moved into the spot (which is just west of Harvard Avenue), a Vietnamese restaurant called V. Majestic resided here for a number of years.

As soon as we find out more information on the restaurant that is apparently moving into the space, we will post an update here.

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Darryl's Bar and Kitchen Opening in Boston's South End

A restaurant featuring Southern-influenced cuisine is going to be opening in the South End of Boston, moving into the space where a handful of restaurants and clubs have resided in recent times.

According to both EveryBlock Boston and Zagat Boston, Darryl's Bar & Kitchen will open on Columbus Avenue along the western edge of the South End (just west of Mass. Ave.). The spot that Darryl's will be going into formerly housed a restaurant and jazz lounge called The Stork Club, which closed a couple of months ago. Before The Stork Club was a short-lived French restaurant called Circle, and before that, Bob's Southern Bistro and a popular restaurant and club called Bob The Chef's. Zagat states that the person behind Bob The Chef's is also going to be behind Darryl's Bar & Kitchen, which will focus on American fare with a nod toward Southern dishes. According to Zagat, there will also be occasional live music, and a full bar will be included as part of the new spot.

It appears that Darryl's Bar & Kitchen may be opening very soon, as Zagat mentions that it will be in operation anytime from today on. [August 24 update: Based on a post on Grub Street Boston, it looks like Darryl's Bar & Kitchen is now open for business.]

The address for this new restaurant in the South End is: Darryl's Bar & Kitchen, 604 Columbus Avenue, Boston, MA, 02118.

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Friday, August 13, 2010

News Elsewhere: When Pigs Fly Is Opening a Pizza Restaurant in Kittery, Maine

It looks like a New England-based bakery and retailer with several locations in the region (including two in the Boston area) may be opening a restaurant in Southern Maine that features pizza.

According to SeacoastOnline.com, the people behind When Pigs Fly are hoping to open a pizza restaurant at the site of Durgin Farm on Route 1 in Kittery. The plan is to have a dining spot that features a wood-fired oven, along with a store that sells the bakery's breads. The article states that if the plans for the place work out, the restaurant will be housed in a 5,000-square-foot structure that also has a 1,200-square-foot porch, and seating for 50 to 100 diners.

SeacoastOnline.com mentions that the restaurant still needs to go through several steps before it can become reality, including approval from the Kittery Planning Board.

[May 24, 2011 update: When Pigs Fly did receive approval for its new When Pigs Fly Wood Fired Oven Pizzeria on Route 1 in Kittery, and construction seems to be moving along. About two weeks ago, the Facebook page for When Pigs Fly indicated that the new restaurant should be opening "in only a few more weeks," so expect the place to open very soon.]

[July 5, 2011 update: According to their Facebook page, When Pigs Fly Wood Fired Oven Pizzeria in Kittery is now open.]

When Pigs Fly first started out in Wells, Maine in 1993, and has now grown to include stores in York, Kittery, and Freeport, as well as Portsmouth, NH, and Brookline and Somerville in the Boston area. Its breads can be found in markets and stores throughout the Northeast, as well as Farmers' Markets in Maine, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island.

For more information on the opening of a pizza restaurant from When Pigs Fly, please go to the SeacoastOnline.com link below.

A new pizza place? When Pigs Fly