Thursday, March 31, 2011

Abbott's Frozen Custard Opens in Brighton

A small chain of frozen custard shops with one location in the Boston area has just opened a second one, with this shop being in one of the city's neighborhoods.

A video posted on Facebook by The Phantom Gourmet indicates that Abbott's Frozen Custard is now open at the corner of Washington Street and Market Street in Brighton Center. The new shop joins another Boston-area location that is on Great Plain Avenue in Needham, as well as more than 40 other locations in New York (where it started out), Florida, and Colorado.

Abbott's Frozen Custard features cups and cones of their custard as well as cakes, pies, "novelties," banana splits, smoothies, milkshakes, sodas, and floats. The chain also gives customers the opportunity to build their own sundaes, choosing from custard flavors, toppings, and treats.

The address for this new frozen custard spot in Brighton is: Abbott's Frozen Custard, 360 Washington Street, Brighton, MA, 02135. The phone number is (617) 562-8600. And the website for the chain can be found at:

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Irashai Sushi and Teriyaki Is Opening on the Edge of Boston's Chinatown

A new Japanese restaurant and sushi bar is planning to open in downtown Boston, along the southern edge of Chinatown.

A poster on the Chowhound site has mentioned that Irashai Sushi and Teriyaki is going to be opening on Kneeland Street, just east of the main part of the Theatre District. The restaurant's website indicates that it is moving into the space where Pho Thien Thien had been, and before that, several other restaurants.

There is no indication right now as to when Irashai Sushi and Teriyaki might open, but it does not appear that it is quite ready to open just yet, based on the Chowhound post. Once the restaurant does open, its hours of operation will be 11:00 PM to 10:00 PM Sunday through Thursday and 11:00 AM to 11:00 PM on Fridays and Saturdays.

[August 17 update: According to one of our posters (and confirmed by us today), Irashai Sushi and Teriyaki is now open for business.]

The address for this new Japanese dining spot is: Irashai Sushi and Teriyaki, 8 Kneeland Street, Boston, MA, 02111. The phone number is (617) 350-6888. And the website can be found at:

Pinkberry, BerryLine, Tasti D-Lite, Smoothie King All Coming to Boston's Back Bay

The Back Bay of Boston will soon be brimming with frozen yogurt places.

According to The Boston Herald, four frozen yogurt spots are on their way to this Boston neighborhood, including three opening on Newbury Street and another coming to the Prudential Center. The Herald mentions that BerryLine is opening this spring on Newbury Street while Smoothie King could be open on the same street by Marathon Monday, and Tasti D-Lite is planning to join them in May. In addition, another Pinkberry is due to open soon in the Prudential Center, making it the second location in the Back Bay (another Pinkberry opened on Newbury Street last November).

[April 14 update: An email sent to us by CBH Communications indicates that the new Pinkberry at the Prudential Center will be having a grand opening today.]

[April 29 update: An email sent to us by Regan Communications Group mentions that Smoothie King is opening tomorrow (Saturday, April 30) at 314 Newbury Street.]

[May 20 update: According to the Boston Back Bay Facebook page, Tasti D-Lite is now open at 205 Newbury Street.]

[June 1 update: According to their Twitter page, BerryLine opens today at 303 Newbury Street.]

The three frozen yogurt shops that will be opening on Newbury Street will all be within a block of each other, the Herald says.

The Back Bay currently has a number of ice cream shops in addition to the existing (and future) frozen yogurt shops, including Ben & Jerry's, Cold Stone Creamery, Emack & Bolio's, and J.P. Licks.

For more information on the opening of four frozen yogurt shops in the Back Bay, please go to the Boston Herald link below.

Big Chill on Newbury Street

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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Towne Stove and Spirits Makes OpenTable's Diners' Choice Awards for Top Hot Spot Restaurants

An online restaurant reservations provider has come out with its Diners' Choice awards for "hottest" restaurants (places to see and be seen), and a Back Bay restaurant has made the list.

According to MSN Money, Towne Stove and Spirits on Boylston Street made the list of the 50 best hot spot restaurants in the United States, in fact cracking the top 10 at number 7, based on feedback from OpenTable's diners. The list of the 50 hottest restaurants comes from more than seven million reviews of more than 12,000 restaurants across the country between March, 2010, and February, 2011, according to the article.

No other New England restaurants made the top 50, although a number of places in New York City were picked as top hot spots.

For a complete list of the hot spots chosen by OpenTable's diners, please go to the MSN Money link below:

OpenTable Diners Reveal the Hottest Restaurants in the U.S.

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Cakes Bakery and Cafe Is Coming to Walpole

It looks like a bakery and cafe with locations in Milton and Arlington (and soon, Watertown) may be opening another spot sometime this year, this one being southwest of Boston.

According to one of their Facebook pages, Cakes Bakery and Cafe is planning to open in Walpole, with a possible opening being late in the summer or early in the fall. The page mentions that they are hoping to sign a lease on April 15 for the Walpole location, and have already made a deal with the landlord for the space.

[May 25 update: According to their Facebook page, the lease has been signed for the new Cakes Bakery and Cafe in Walpole, though it will be awhile before they start work on the place (no specific opening date has been given).]

Cakes Bakery and Cafe's original location is in Milton, with an expansion into Arlington happening last November. The Watertown location may be opening within days, based on a note from the Facebook page for that location. [ED note: The Watertown location is indeed now open.]

As soon as we can confirm an address for the Walpole location, we will post an update here.

The website for the original Cakes Bakery and Cafe in Milton can be found at:

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Bella Drew's Cafe Opens in Boston, Taking Over Former Chacarero Space

A cafe featuring Southwest-influenced dishes has opened in downtown Boston, moving into the space where a Chilean restaurant used to be.

A poster on Chowhound has mentioned that Bella Drew's Cafe is now open on Province Street, taking over the old Chacarero spot (Chacarero closed its Province Street location last month--the Arch Street location remains open). A look at the restaurant's website indicates that the new eatery focuses on soups, salads, and sandwiches for the lunch crowd, as well as a handful of options at breakfast. Sandwiches include chipotle beef and cilantro chicken, while breakfast items include huevos rancheros and a breakfast burrito.

Hours for Bella Drew's are 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM Monday through Friday.

The address for this new dining spot in downtown Boston is: Bella Drew's Cafe, 26 Province Street, Boston, MA, 02108. The phone number is (617) 723-2100. And their website can be found at:

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R 'n R (Redd's in Rozzie) Opening in Roslindale

It looks like the Executive Chef of a comfort food spot in Boston's South End is getting ready to open a new restaurant in another section of the city.

According to the reddsinroslindale blog, Charlie Redd of Coda on Columbus Avenue is partnering with a second person to open up a neighborhood spot in Roslindale called R 'n R (Redd's in Rozzie). The blog entry indicates that the new eatery will focus on American dishes and comfort food, apparently including BBQ items, hush puppies, Island Creek oysters, baked fish, and doughnuts. A job post on the Craigslist site mentions that R 'n R will focus on locally-sourced ingredients and seasonal dishes.

We do not have an exact address for this restaurant as of this time; as soon as we do, we will post it here. [April 6 update: According to several sources, including the Eric Madsen: The Design Guy blog, R 'n R will be located on Washington Street in the space where Geoffrey's Cafe used to be (Geoffrey's has since moved to the Back Bay of Boston).]

Expect an April opening for R 'n R. [April 27 update: According to Universal Hub, R 'n R is now open, though just for dinner right now. Thanks to food and drinks writer MC Slim JB for posting this information on Chowhound.

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Locke-Ober in Boston Is Re-Opening

An historic Boston restaurant that temporarily closed its doors around the beginning of the year has apparently re-opened, though it appears that no tables are available until this coming weekend.

A poster on the Chowhound site has mentioned that according to The Improper Bostonian, Locke-Ober on Winter Street is open once again. A check on the restaurant's website indicates that the site is fully functional, and a check on OpenTable shows that tables at Locke-Ober are available starting Saturday, April 2. OpenTable is only showing tables available from 5:30 PM on over the next couple of weeks, so it is possible that the eatery is only open for dinner for now (we will try to get an update on this as soon as possible).

[April 6 update: According to The Boston Globe, Locke-Ober is planning to open to the public on Friday, April 8. As indicated above, the restaurant will indeed only be serving dinner for now, but it hopes to start serving lunch sometime this fall. The Globe also mentions that the menu will be re-vamped, with healthier options available.]

Locke-Ober closed its doors in January of this year, with word coming out after their closing that the person who used to run the operations of the high-end dining spot took control of it once again. We are still waiting to see if restaurateur and chef Lydia Shire will continue to be involved with the restaurant (again, stay tuned for updates).

Locke-Ober, which has been in business since 1875, features mostly classic American fare such as steak, seafood, chicken, pork, and lamb dishes.

The address for Locke-Ober is: Locke-Ober, 3 Winter Place, Boston, MA, 02108. The phone number is (617) 542-1340. And their website can be found at:

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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Update: W Boston Hotel (Where Market by Jean-Georges Is Located) Is Sold to Investment Firm

Last summer, we reported that a hotel and condominium complex in downtown Boston that also housed an upscale restaurant was in danger of being foreclosed. This week, it has been announced that the hotel has been sold, though the condos will remain in the hands of the developer.

According to The Boston Globe, Maryland-based Pebblebrook Hotel Trust has bought W Boston Hotel on Stuart Street in the Theatre District from Sawyer Enterprises, with Sawyer keeping the residences within the building. The article mentions that Starwood will continue to run the hotel, with the name remaining the same.

The article contains no information on whether Market by Jean-Georges (the restaurant on the premises) is also part of the deal, but since it appears that Sawyer is only be keeping the residences upstairs, it seems that the upscale restaurant that is known in part for having a three-star Michelin chef behind it may also be part of the sale.

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:

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

Troubled developer sells W Hotel

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City of Boston Suspends the Use of Beer Towers in Restaurants and Bars

The use of large, portable beer taps in Boston restaurants and bars has come to an end for now, and businesses looking to provide them in the future will need to get permission from the city.

According to, city licensing officials have decided to suspend the use of beer towers, which have become increasingly popular over the years in Boston-area watering holes. The article mentions that the city will now require restaurants and bars to get permission from the licensing board to use them, with the board looking at each request individually.

Earlier this month, Tavern in the Square in Allston and Roggie's in Brighton were cited by Boston police for supplying beer towers without approval from the city, according to the Globe (and first mentioned in the Allston/Brighton TAB and Wicked Local). The report also says that the eating and drinking establishments were cited for selling more than two drinks at once to individuals (via the beer towers), which violates Massachusetts law.

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

Boston licensing officials suspend use of large, portable beer towers

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Boston Licensing Board Schedules Hearing for Status of Todd English's Olives

A celebrity chef-owned New American and Mediterranean restaurant in Charlestown that was damaged in a fire last spring remains closed, and the Boston Licensing Board is now getting involved.

According to the Boston Herald, Olives, which is run by Todd English, has been shuttered since last May, when a grease fire resulted in approximately $200,000 in damages. The Herald mentions that it does not look like much in the way of major renovations have been done to the City Square eatery to get it ready for opening, and now the city is holding a hearing to see if there are any violations of the restaurant's license, based on the fact that the place has not reopened. A spokesperson for Todd English states that Olives will open once again early this summer, with work being done in the space in order to prepare for its reopening.

The hearing is scheduled for Tuesday, April 5. [April 8 update: According to The Charlestown Patch, the Boston Licensing Board has decided to let Olives keep their liquor license for 45 days (through the month of May), but the board may decide--via a status meeting at the end of the 45-day period--to take away the license if the restaurant has not opened by then.]

The address for this restaurant is: Olives, 10 City Square, Charlestown, MA, 02129.

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

Board serves up notice to Todd English and Co.

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Monday, March 28, 2011

Sal's Pizza Is Opening in Boston's Fenway Neighborhood

A growing local chain of pizza places and Italian restaurants is expanding further into Boston, soon opening its third location within the city limits.

According to Adam's Hospitality and Tourism Industry Blog, Sal's Pizza is looking to open on Brookline Avenue sometime in April. The space that Sal's will be moving into is about a block from Fenway Park (home of the Boston Red Sox) and is where Il Giardino Cafe used to be until closing in the fall of 2010.

Sal's Pizza, which is known for their 19-inch pizzas and 1-pound calzones, currently has locations on Tremont Street across from Boston Common and on Commonwealth Avenue over by Boston University. Other locations can be found throughout the area, with many being north of Boston. Sister restaurants include Mary's Pasta and Sandwiches and Salvatore's Italian Restaurant.

[May 10 update: According to the restaurant chain's website, it looks like the new Sal's Pizza on Brookline Avenue is now open.]

The address for this new pizza place near Fenway Park is: Sal's Pizza, 132 Brookline Avenue, Boston, MA, 02215. The website for the chain is:

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The Cottage Is Opening in Chestnut Hill

A restaurant with one location in Wellesley and another far from the Boston area will soon be opening a third location, this one just west of Boston.

According to their Facebook page, The Cottage is going to open on Boylston Street (Route 9) in the Chestnut Hill section of Newton. (A meeting notes page from the City of Newton website indicates that the restaurant will be located in the Chestnut Hill Shopping Center.) Once it opens, The Cottage in Chestnut Hill will join two other existing locations, one on Linden Street in Wellesley, and another in La Jolla, CA.

The Cottage is known in part for its eclectic California-influenced menu, including such items as mashed potato omelettes, chicken tenders with pineapple salsa, a crab melt sandwich, mahi tacos, short rib sliders, cornflake-crusted veal, and brick chicken.

Based on the notes from the City of Newton website, The Cottage in Chestnut Hill plans to be open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily, with hours possibly being from 8:00 AM to midnight.

Expect a spring opening for The Cottage.

[May 31 update: According to their Facebook page, The Cottage in Chestnut Hill is now open.]

The address for this new restaurant in Newton is: The Cottage, 47 Boylston Street, Chestnut Hill, MA, 02467. The website for the Wellesley location can be found at:

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Cheeseboy Opens at the South Shore Plaza in Braintree

A few months after opening in downtown Boston, a takeout restaurant featuring grilled cheese sandwiches has opened another location, this one being south of the city.

According to their Facebook page, Cheeseboy opened a few days ago at the food court in the South Shore Plaza in Braintree, joining two other existing locations, one at South Station in Boston and the other in Milford, CT. As is the case with the other two restaurants, the new Cheeseboy in Braintree features custom-made grilled cheese sandwiches as well as signature sandwiches, including a healthier version with multigrain bread and light Swiss cheese. Cheeseboy also offers soups, snacks, desserts, and beverages.

The South Station location of Cheeseboy opened in October of 2010, while the original Milford, CT, location opened about a year prior to that.

Tha address for this new eatery at the South Shore Plaza is: Cheeseboy, 250 Granite Street, Braintree, MA, 02184. The phone number is (781) 843-7474. And the website for all three locations can be found at:

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2011 Boston Bacon and Beer Festival to Be Held April 30

For those of you who missed your chance to go to last year's Boston Bacon and Beer Festival, you'll have another chance next month.

According to the site, the 2011 Boston Bacon and Beer Festival is going to be held on Saturday, April 30 at Royale, a nightclub complex on Tremont Street in the Theatre District. The event, which will run from 1:30 PM to 3:30 PM, will feature bacon-based dishes from a variety of restaurants and food purveyors, as well as beer from breweries around the region. Some of the food places expecting to be at the event include b.good, Casablanca, Eat at Jumbo's, The Independent, KO Prime, La Laiterie, Petit Robert Bistro, Roxy's Grilled Cheese Truck, Seasons to Taste, South End Buttery, Vermont Smoke and Cure, and Whole Foods Market (Symphony). Breweries that look to be participating include Blue Hills Brewery, Cape Ann Brewing Company, Long Trail, Mayflower Brewing Company, Mercury Brewing Company, Peak Organic Brewing Co., Smuttynose Brewing Co., and Wachusett Brewing Company.

Tickets to this 21+ event go on sale Friday, April 1. Please note that proceeds from the event go to the hunger relief organizations Community Servings, Lovin' Spoonfuls, and Share our Strength.

For more information on the 2011 Boston Bacon and Beer Festival, please go to the link below.

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Friday, March 25, 2011

Maki Maki Is Opening in Allston

It looks like a new all-you-can-eat sushi buffet spot is coming to Allston.

According to The Harvard Crimson and Grub Street Boston, Maki Maki is planning to open on Western Avenue, moving into one of a number of properties that Harvard University owns. The Crimson article mentions that the 180-seat restaurant will be open for lunch and dinner daily and is not going to be serving alcohol. Its location will be in the Brighton Mills Shopping Center, which is just west of Everett Street and a few blocks west of North Harvard Street.

Expect Maki Maki to open sometime this summer, according to the Crimson.

[April 20, 2012 update: Posts by the Grub Street site and the Eater Boston site both indicate that Maki Maki is now open.]

Based on the address for the Brighton Mills Shopping Center, it appears that the address for this new sushi spot in Allston is: Maki Maki, 370 Western Avenue, Allston, MA, 02134.

For more information on the opening of Maki Maki in Allston, please go to the Harvard Crimson and Grub Street Boston links below.

The Harvard Crimson
Sushi Restaurant To Open in Allston

Grub Street Boston
Allstonians Prefer Kmart to Sushi?

Book from Luke O'Neil: "Boston's Best Dive Bars: Drinking and Diving in Beantown"

A Boston-area journalist has written a book on some of the most interesting bars in Beantown.

Luke O'Neil, a writer whose resume includes writing for the Boston Globe, the Weekly Dig, the Boston Metro, the Boston Phoenix, Stuff Magazine, and other publications, has a forthcoming book called Boston's Best Dive Bars: Drinking and Diving in Beantown, which highlights 100 drinking establishments in the city. The book will focus on down-and-dirty places that are frequented more by locals than visitors to Boston.

The final release date is not quite set yet, but it is possible that Boston's Best Dive Bars: Drinking and Diving in Beantown could be out by late April (we will post updates here as we get them).

[May 4 update: According to the Amazon site, the book has been released and is in stock.]

[May 10 update: A book release party for Boston's Best Dive Bars: Drinking and Diving in Beantown is being held on May 24 from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM at T.C.'s Lounge on Haviland Street along the western edge of Boston's Back Bay. It is a public event, so if you would like to go, information on the party can be found at this Facebook link: Book Release Party -- Boston's Best Dive Bars: Drinking and Diving in Beantown]

A link to the book can be found on Amazon below:

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Taza to Donate 50% of Retail Sales to Red Cross Japan Relief Effort Through March 31

A chocolate factory in Somerville is going to be helping the Red Cross Japan relief effort in a big way over the next several days.

According to their website, Taza Chocolate Factory is going to donate 50% of their retail sales from both their web store and their factory store to the Red Cross from now through Thursday, March 31. The note on their site mentions that on April 1, they will post the total donation amounts on their blog as well as their Twitter and Facebook pages.

Taza Chocolate Factory, which started out in 2006, is known in part for their stone-ground, organic chocolate discs that include such flavors as cinnamon, coffee, guajillo chili, salt and pepper, salted almond, and vanilla bean. Their factory is located on Windsor Street (between Union Street in Somerville and Inman Square in Cambridge), and their website can be found at

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

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Thursday, March 24, 2011

Owners of Scup's in East Boston No Longer Able to Run the Restaurant

An eclectic restaurant that resides in an unusual location in East Boston is in danger of shutting down due to the fact that its owners can no longer run the place.

According to Adam's Hospitality & Tourism Industry Blog, the people behind Scup's in the Harbour are asking others to take over the eatery, as they have received serious medical news and need to focus on things other than the restaurant for the the time being. The blog entry shows a letter from the owners, which includes the fact that they are hoping to find others to run Scup's as soon as possible.

Scup's in the Harbour, which is located in the Boston Harbor Shipyard, is a little restaurant facing the water that includes a small dining area inside and a few picnic tables out front. The menu features mostly lighter fare, including salads, sandwiches, empanadas, and desserts, along with dinner specials that are often more substantial. Our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants) has featured Scup's as a hidden gem to go to in the Boston area, with the review being at this link:

If anyone is interested in getting in touch with the owners of Scup's, their email is

The address for this East Boston restaurant is: Scup's in the Harbour, 256 Marginal Street (Building 16), East Boston, MA, 02128.

For more information on this story, please go to the Adam's Hospitality & Tourism Industry Blog link below. And repeating the message from that site, we also wish Dave and Wendy the best and hope that all goes well for them.

Scup's in the Harbor seeks help to stay afloat

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Taste of the Nation to Be Held in Boston on April 14, 2011

A culinary event that benefits the fight against hunger among children returns to Boston once again next month.

Share our Strength will be bringing the 23rd annual Taste of the Nation Boston to The Hynes Convention Center on Boylston Street in the Back Bay on Thursday, April 14, and this year, more than 70 restaurants will be participating. The event, which goes from 6:30 PM to 9:00 PM (5:30 PM admission), will feature such restaurants as 606 Congress, Alden Park, Betty's Wok and Noodle, Erbaluce, Haley House Bakery Cafe, La Morra, Mantra, Sel de la Terre, Silvertone, Tavolo, and Trina's Starlite Lounge.

Tickets to the 2011 Taste of the Nation Boston cost $90 in advance ($100 at the door) for general admission and $150 in advance ($160 at the door) for VIP admission. As was the case last year, 100% of ticket sales go to Share Our Strength's efforts to end childhood hunger in America.

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

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Earl of Sandwich Opening at Boston Common

A small chain of sandwich shops with one location in Boston is planning to open another in the city, with this one being in a structure that used to be a public bathroom.

According to The Boston Herald, the Earl of Sandwich is going to open on Boston Common in the former rest room that faces Tremont Street. The Herald mentions that the building, which was constructed nearly 90 years ago, will be leased to the chain, which currently operates another restaurant at Logan Airport as well as 12 others around the country.

The Earl of Sandwich features hot sandwiches (including their signature sandwich--roast beef, cheese, and horseradish), salads, tomato soup, kettle-cooked chips, cookies, brownies, cupcakes, and smoothies. Breakfast is also offered, with the focus being on hot breakfast sandwiches.

Expect a late 2011 or early 2012 opening for the new location of the Earl of Sandwich.

[August 31 update: According to The Boston Globe, Mayor Thomas M. Menino has signed a lease allowing the Earl of Sandwich to open at Boston Common. The sandwich shop, which will be open annually from at least April 15 through October 31, could be open for business by the spring of 2012.]

[September 24, 2012 update: The Boston Herald states that the Earl of Sandwich is looking at an October opening. (Thanks to Adam's Hospitality & Tourism Industry Blog for bringing this to our attention.)]

[September 24, 2012 update #2: Eater Boston reports (via the Herald) that not only will the Earl of Sandwich be opening at Boston Common in October, but there might also be more locations coming to the area, as the folks behind the chain have been scouting out other spaces, including along the Mass. Pike. (It appears that there could be at least four or five Earl of Sandwich outlets on the way to the Boston area at some point.)]

[November 9, 2012 update: The Beacon Hill Patch mentions that  the Earl of Sandwich plans to open on Monday (November 12). Thanks to Adam's Hospitality & Tourism Industry Blog for letting us know about this.]

The chain's website can be found at:

For more information on the opening of the Earl of Sandwich at Boston Common, please go to the Boston Herald link below.

Sandwich shop coming to Boston Common's Pink Palace

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Vincenzo's Italian Deli and Specialty Store to Open in Dedham

A new Italian delicatessen and specialty shop is getting ready to open in Dedham.

According to The Dedham Transcript, Vincenzo's is going to be opening on Bryant Street in the center of town, bringing to the area a place to get everything from freshly-made sandwiches (including panini) to fresh bread and pastries, as well as imported pastas, meats, cheeses, and olive oil. An article in the Dedham Patch mentions that the store, which is moving into the space where Uniquely Global used to be, will probably be open from 8 AM to 5 PM on weekdays, and from 8:00 AM to 3:00 PM on Saturdays (it looks like it will be closed on Sundays).

The address for this upcoming Italian deli and specialty store in Dedham will be: Vincenzo's, 29 Bryant Street, Dedham, MA, 02026.

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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Pop-Up Restaurant Coming to Mizu Salon in Boston's Back Bay

The Boston-area chef who is behind three pop-up restaurants is teaming up once again with an event organizer (and well-known Twitter figure) to bring a pop-up to a rather unlikely spot.

According to the site, the upcoming pop-up restaurant will be held on Saturday, April 9, at the Mizu Salon on Boylston Street (at the Mandarin Oriental hotel). Once again, chef Will Gilson of Garden at the Cellar in Cambridge and Aaron Cohen of Eat Boston are working together on this project, with Gilson collaborating with Louie DiBiccari of Sel de la Terre Back Bay on a five-course, prix fixe menu. The menu will include items such as English pea soup with pickled mushrooms and country ham "suds," salt-and-pepper grass-fed beef with bok choy, curried potatoes, and ginger, and a blonde brownie with caramel mousse, Madeira gel, and cherries. The first course will begin at 7:30 PM.

The price of a dinner ticket is $100, with part of the proceeds going to the International Medical Corps, a nonprofit organization that is taking part in relief efforts in Japan after the devastating earthquake and tsunami that hit that country.

Fro more information on the pop-up restaurant at the Mizu Salon, please go to the link below.

Thanks to Grub Street Boston for bringing this to our attention.

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2011 James Beard Foundation Awards Nominees Include Boston Restaurant, Three Local Chefs

The James Beard Foundation Awards nominees have been announced for 2011, and one Boston restaurant and three Boston-area chefs are included on the list.

According to The Boston Globe, Menton in the Fort Point District of the city has been nominated for best new restaurant, Tim Cushman of O Ya in the Leather District and Tony Maws of Craigie on Main in Cambridge have been nominated for best chef: Northeast, and Joanne Chang of Flour Bakery + Cafe has been nominated for outstanding pastry chef. A look at the James Beard site shows a number of New York restaurants and chefs being nominated (including ABC Kitchen for best new restaurant and April Bloomfield of The Spotted Pig for best chef: New York City), as well as a few New England chefs being nominated for the Northeast category (Krista Kern Desjarlais of Bresca in Portland, ME; Matt Jennings of La Laiterie, in Providence, RI; Eric Warnstedt of Hen of the Wood in Waterbury, VT).

The winners of the 2011 James Beard Foundation Awards will be announced on Monday, May 9.

For more information on the James Beard Foundation Awards nominees for 2011, please go to the link below.

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Monday, March 21, 2011

Guy Fieri of Diners, Drive -Ins, and Dives Is Featuring Merritt Canteen in Bridgeport, CT, Tonight

Food Network host Guy Fieri is back in New England, this time featuring a roadside restaurant in Connecticut on his show "Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives," with the episode airing tonight.

According to the Food Network's website, Merritt Canteen in Bridgeport, CT, is being featured this evening, with the Main Street dining spot being one of three places mentioned on tonight's show (the other two being Katie's Restaurant in New Orleans and Jersey Cafe in Carmel, IN). It appears that Guy Fieri will focus on the hot dogs, burgers, and seafood served at this eatery, which our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants) featured awhile back. (The blog entry is at this link:

The show can be seen from 9:00 PM to 9:30 PM tonight on the Food Network, and again from 12:00 AM to 12:30 AM.

The address for the Merritt Canteen is: Merritt Canteen, 4355 Main Street, Bridgeport, CT, 06606.

For more on Guy Fieri's "Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives" (as well as the Food Network in general), please go to the following link:

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Pauli's Is Opening in Boston's North End

A new restaurant is going to be coming to the North End of Boston, and the person behind it happens to be the nephew of the owner of a group of Italian specialty shops in the Boston area.

According to EveryBlock Boston, a business license has been issued for Pauli's, an eatery that plans to open on Salem Street. The new restaurant is going to be opening in the space where the food store Going Bananas used to be before they moved into a larger space across the street last year. An earlier article within the website indicates that the person who will be running Pauli's was the manager at J. Pace's in Boston's Financial District (now closed), and his uncle is Joe Pace, who owns and operates the four J. Pace & Son markets in the North End, the West End, the Seaport District, and Saugus.

The article mentions that Pauli's will be mainly a takeout place with counter service, and it will be open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner (there will be seating for 18 for those who wish to dine in-house.) Expect soups, sandwiches, and pasta dishes at the new eatery, according to the article.

[May 31 update: An email sent to us by michelletwEATS indicates that Pauli's is going to be opening its doors this Friday (June 3). A sample menu for Pauli's was included in the email, showing such items as an antipasto, a Tuscan wrap, prosciutto classico, steak pizzaiola, burgers, chicken kabobs, tortellini pesto, and eggplant parmesan.]

The address for this new restaurant in the North End is: Pauli's, 65 Salem Street, Boston, MA, 02113. The website can be found at

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Bengal Cafe in Cambridge Has Closed

It looks like a tiny Bengali restaurant in Cambridge has closed its doors for good.

A check on the Bengal Cafe on Mass. Ave. in the North Cambridge neighborhood shows that the restaurant is locked up and has a "For Rent" sign on the front window. A phone call placed to the dining spot indicates that the phone is out of service, and their website is no longer working.

The Bengal Cafe, which first opened in 2004, featured a mix of Begali and Indian fare, including such items as poori, roti, saag aloo, samosas, biryani, fish curry, and eggplant fritters. Our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants) reviewed the restaurant awhile back within its blog. The review can be found at the link below:

The address for this now-closed restaurant in North Cambridge was: Bengal Cafe, 2263 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA, 02140.

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Friday, March 18, 2011

Monsters of Pork do American Lamb Event Coming to Boston, April 2, 2011

Last fall, a culinary event that featured pork butchery demos and pork dishes was held in downtown Boston, and now, a similar event focusing on lamb will be held in the South End.

According to, the Monsters of Pork do American Lamb will be taking place at The Gallows on Washington Street on Saturday, April 2. The event, which goes from 1:00 PM to 3:30 PM, will include lamb butchery demonstrations, as well as samples of various lamb-based dishes. (Guests will also receive a complimentary Jagermeister cocktail.) The "Monsters of Pork" for the event are Will Gilson (Garden at the Cellar), Nuno Alves (Tavolo Ristorante), and Vadim Akimenko (Akimenko Meats).

The lamb supplied for the Monsters of Pork do American Lamb event will be provided by the American Lamb Board.

Tickets to this event cost $25.

For more information on the Monsters of Pork do American Lamb event, please go to the link below.

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Results of Twitter Guacamole Poll

Our latest Twitter poll is now complete, with this poll looking at the best guacamole in the Boston area. Our previous polls have included a donut poll (Kane's in Saugus won), a pad Thai poll (Brown Sugar Cafe in Boston), a bagel poll (Bagel Rising/Espresso Royale in Boston), a French fry poll (The Publick House in Brookline), a steak tip poll (NewBridge Cafe in Chelsea), a bread poll (When Pigs Fly in various locations), a coffee poll (Boston Common Coffee in Boston), a meatball poll (Comella's in various locations), a sushi poll (Douzo in the Back Bay), a cupcake poll (Sweet Cupcakes in the Back Bay and Harvard Square), a steak and cheese poll (Carl's in Waltham), an ice cream poll (Richardson's in Middleton), a roast beef poll (Nick's Famous Roast Beef in Beverly), a chicken wing poll (Buff's Pub in Newton), a macaroni and cheese poll (Fat Cat in Quincy), a fried clam poll (JT Farnham's in Essex), an onion ring poll (Mr. Bartley's Burger Cottage in Cambridge), a hot dog poll (Spike's Junkyard Dogs), a pizza poll (Santarpio's in East Boston), a burger poll (Mr. Bartley's Burger Cottage), and a lobster roll poll (Neptune Oysters in the North End). Below are the results of the Twitter guacamole poll:

1) Ole Mexican Grill, Cambridge (20%)
2) Angela's Cafe, East Boston (15%)
3) Papagayo, Boston (12%)
4) La Verdad, Boston (7%)

A number of other spots were picked in the Twitter guacamole poll, including Anna's Taqueria (Boston, Brookline, Cambridge, Somerville), Border Cafe (Burlington, Cambridge, Saugus), Casa Blanca (North Andover), El Sarape (Braintree), Fiesta Mexican Restaurant (East Bridgewater), Lolita Cocina & Tequila Bar (Back Bay), Olecito (Boston, Brookline, Cambridge), On the Border (Woburn) Poe's Kitchen at the Rattlesnake (Back Bay), Rudy's (Somerville), Salsa's (Hingham, South Boston), Villa Mexico (Beacon Hill), Whole Foods (various locations), Zocalo (Arlington, Back Bay), and Zuma Tex-Mex Grill (Faneuil Hall).

Thanks to all of you who have voted in our Twitter polls. We will start another poll in the next week or two, so keep checking back on our Twitter page at

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Trade at Atlantic Wharf Is Opening Along Boston's Waterfront

A couple of months ago, we reported that four restaurants are planning to open at the new Atlantic Wharf complex along the Boston waterfront, and that one of the eateries would have a celebrity chef behind it. It turns out that the celebrity chef is the chef/owner of an upscale Italian restaurant in Cambridge.

According to The Boston Herald, Jody Adams of Rialto within the Charles Hotel in Harvard Square is going to be opening Trade at Atlantic Wharf, a new dining spot that will feature Mediterranean fare with French, Greek, Italian and Spanish influences. The Article states that prices for items, which will include slow-cooked stuffed pork and grilled bluefish, will run from $23 to $30. It appears that the new dining spot will include a huge interior canopy within the space, as well as a bar in the middle and a quiet dining area. The restaurant will be open for both lunch and dinner, with lighter fare (including sandwiches) served at lunchtime.

The Atlantic Wharf complex is located between the Rose Kennedy Greenway and Fort Point Channel at the corner of Atlantic Avenue and Congress Street by South Station. Other restaurants moving into the building include a branch of Smith & Wollensky as well as a new location of Sorelle in Charlestown.

[October 14 update: According to UrbanDaddy, it looks like Trade may be opening sometime next week.]

[October 21 update: According to Grub Street Boston, Trade soft-opens tonight.]

For more information on the opening of Trade at Atlantic Wharf, please go to the Boston Herald link below.

Celebrity chef Jody Adams has taste for Atlantic Wharf

Comella's in Brookline Has Closed

A local chain of Italian food retailers and caterers that has been expanding of late has closed one of its locations.

According to a poster on the Chowhound site, Comella's Homemade Italian Foods on Harvard Street in Brookline has shut its doors. (A check on the restaurant's website shows that the Brookline location is indeed no longer shown.) Comella's, which first opened in Brookline in early 2009, has a number of other locations in the Boston area that remain open, including in Arlington, Chestnut Hill, Concord, Needham, Wellesley, West Newton, and West Roxbury. Another one is due to open in Belmont Center soon.

Comella's Homemade Italian Foods concentrates for the most part on takeout food, including items such as lasagna, chicken parmigiana, gnocchi, ravioli, and stuffed shells.

The address for the now-closed Comella's in Brookline was: Comella's Homemade Italian Foods, 417 Harvard Street, Brookline, MA, 02446. Their website can be found at:

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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Kika Tapas Is Opening in Cambridge's Kendall Square

A new Spanish restaurant and tapas bar is going to be opening in the Kendall Square section of Cambridge, and the people behind it also happen to own three other dining spots in the Boston area.

An email sent to us by CityRetail indicates that Kika Tapas is planning to open on Third Street early in the fall. The new eatery will be run by the folks behind Tapeo in Boston's Back Bay and Solea in Waltham. According to notes on a License Commission General Hearing from the City of Cambridge website, Kika Tapas will have a capacity of 126 inside the eatery, and 44 more on a seasonal outdoor patio, and it will be open for both lunch and dinner with hours possibly being 11:00 AM to 1:00 AM daily.

[December 7 update: According to UrbanDaddy, Kika Tapas is going to be opening on Monday (December 12).]

The address for this new Spanish restaurant and tapas bar in Kendall Square is: Kika Tapas, 350 Third Street, Cambridge, MA, 02142.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Bickford's in Braintree Closes...Again

A chain of family-friendly restaurants that specializes in breakfast has closed in Braintree, and as many folks may recall, this isn't the first time that this has happened.

According to a poster on the Chowhound site, Bickford's Grille on Union Street has shut its doors. (A call placed to the restaurant has indeed confirmed this.) Bickford's had reopened last March, several months after Capri Restaurant and Wine Bar closed in that space (Capri had only been there for a few months). Capri had moved into the spot after Bickford's closed for the first time there more than two years ago.

Several other Bickford's locations remain open in the Boston area, including restaurants in Acton, Brockton, Burlington, Needham, and Woburn.

The address for the now-closed Bickford's in Braintree was: Bickford's Grille, 135 Union Street, Braintree, MA, 02184.

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Mangia Neapolitan Pizza to Open Locations in Cohasset and Sharon

A group of Boston-area pizzerias with four locations is getting ready to open two more, with both of them being south of the city.

An email sent to us by Mangia Neapolitan Pizza indicates that new locations will be coming to Cohasset and Sharon. These two pizzerias will join other Mangia locations in Boston's South End, Brookline, Canton, and Walpole.

Mangia Neapolitan Pizza first started out in 2003, offering customers pizzas that are made using whole-wheat dough. Their pizzas can be made with a variety of options for toppings, including pesto, pineapple, shrimp, blue cheese, artichoke hearts, and vinegar peppers. Calzones are also on the menu at Mangia.

[September 1 update: According to the Patriot Ledger, Mangia Neapolitan Pizza has opened its Cohasset location; the Sharon location has not yet opened.]

The website for Mangia Neapolitan Pizza can be found at:

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Wok n Talk Opening in Boston's Mission Hill Neighborhood

A new Asian restaurant is getting ready to open in the Mission Hill section of Boston (a short distance north of the heart of Jamaica Plain), and it will be taking over the space where an Ethiopian dining spot had been before moving to Somerville.

According to the Jamaica Plain Patch, Wok n Talk is opening on South Huntington Avenue, taking over the spot formerly occupied by Fasika, which is now located on Broadway in East Somerville. The article states that the new restaurant will feature Asian fusion cuisine during the lunch and dinner hours, but it will also serve American fare for breakfast. Wok n Talk will be a cafe-type place with an open kitchen and a capacity of 97, along with more than 20 free parking spots.

It appears that Wok n Talk may be opening any day now; as soon as we confirm that the place is indeed open, we will post an update here.

[April 19 update: Wok n Talk is now open.]

The address for this new restaurant in the Mission Hill section of Boston will be: Wok n Talk, 23 South Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA, 02115.

For more information on the opening of Wok n Talk, please go to the Jamaica Plain Patch link below.

Wok n Talk to Open on South Huntington Later This Month

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Salem Spring Restaurant Week to Be Held from April 3 to April 14, 2011

A North Shore community is getting ready for the return of a culinary event, and this time it will last for two weeks.

According to the Salem Patch, the 2011 Salem Spring Restaurant Week will take place from Sunday, April 3 through Thursday, April 7, then after a break on Friday and Saturday, it will start up again on Sunday, April 10 and finish up on Thursday, April 14. As was the case over the fall (when Salem Fall Restaurant Week occurred), participating restaurants will offer two-course prix-fixe dinners for $15 and three-course prix-fixe dinners for $25 (drinks are extra).

A few of the restaurants that will be participating in Salem Spring Restaurant Week include Adriatic Restaurant and Bar, Bella Verona, Cilantro, Grapevine Restaurant, Great Escape, Lakay Island Restaurant, The Lobster Shanty, The Lyceum, Regatta Pub Salem Beer Works, Seaport Cafe, and Thai Place.

For more information on the 2011 Salem Spring Restaurant Week, please go to the Salem Patch link below.

Spring Restaurant Week Extended Two Weeks

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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Cedar Crest in North Andover to Close; Shadi's May Be Replacing It

A restaurant that moved to North Andover about a year ago after being in Lawrence for several decades is apparently going to be closing, and a Middle Eastern restaurant in Methuen that was destroyed in a fire a few months ago may be moving into the space.

According to the Eagle-Tribune, the Cedar Crest Restaurant on Chickering Road may be closing in early April, with Shadi's Restaurant looking to move in. The Cedar Crest opened in its current space in the winter of 2010 after moving out of Lawrence, where it had been since the 1930s. Shadi's had been in business in Methuen for nearly 20 years before being hit by a fire on Christmas Day in 2010, according to the Eagle-Tribune. The article also mentions that the now-vacant building where Shadi's used to be will be torn down.

The address for the soon-to-close Cedar Crest Restaurant (and the upcoming Shadi's) is 585 Chickering Road, North Andover, MA, 01845.

For more information on the closing of the Cedar Crest and the planned move into the space by Shadi's, please go to the Eagle-Tribune link below.

Landmark restaurant to be torn down

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Sabatino and Co Roma to Bring Truffles to Boston's Back Bay

It looks like a manufacturer and importer of truffle products is going to be opening its first retail store, and it will be located in the heart of Boston's Back Bay.

According to Grub Street, Sabatino North America is planning to open Sabatino & Co Roma on Newbury Street on March 24 (the Boston Globe mentions that it will be moving into the space where the cosmetic store Shu Uemura used to be). In addition to the selling of truffles, Grub Street mentions that the new shop will sell truffle-based foods as well as skin-care products and cookbooks, and an article in The Feast also says that Sabatino & Co Roma will sell non-truffle gourmet foods such as mustard and vinegar.

[March 25 update: According to the Sabatino Facebook page, the new Sabatino & Co Roma store in Boston is now open.]

Grub Street notes that Sabatino & Co Roma will be opening other stores in Los Angeles, New York, and San Francisco by the end of 2011.

The address for this new shop is: Sabatino & Co Roma, 130 Newbury Street (between Clarendon Street and Dartmouth Street), Boston, MA, 02116. The Sabatino website can be found at:

For more information on the upcoming opening of Sabatino & Co Roma, please go to the links below.

[Grub Street Boston]
There Will Be Truffles
Soon, Bostonians Won't Have to Hunt for Truffles

[Boston Globe]
New shop aims to truffle Newbury St. ambiance

[The Feast]
Newbury Street to Gain Sabatino and Co Roma, a Mini Truffle Emporium

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Sai Restaurants Inc., (Masala Art in Needham) Files for Bankruptcy

The person behind a Needham restaurant--and several others in the Boston area that have closed over recent times--has filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy.

According to articles in the Boston Business Journal, Sai Restaurants Inc., which is owned Vinod Kapoor, filed for protection under the federal bankruptcy code this week. Kapoor is the owner of the Indian restaurant Masala Art in Needham, and he and his wife have also been behind Curry Leaf in Natick and Bombay Club in Faneuil Hall and the South End, all of which are now closed.

The Boston Business Journal articles mention that Sai Restaurants Inc., has assets between $100,000 and $500,000 with liabilities being between $1 million and $10 million.

It is not known whether Masala Art will remain open during the bankruptcy proceedings; as soon as we find more information on this, we will post an update here. [June 7 update: Masala Art is indeed still open during the bankruptcy procedure.]

The address for Masala Art is: Masala Art, 990 Great Plain Avenue, Needham, MA, 02492.

For more information on this story, please go to the following Boston Business Journal links:

Restaurateur Kapoor files for bankruptcy

Prominent restaurateur files for Ch. 11

Thanks to the person behind the website for bringing this to our attention.

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Monday, March 14, 2011

Pazzo in Boston's Back Bay Has Apparently Closed

An Italian and Mediterranean restaurant in the Back Bay of Boston that opened about two years ago has apparently shut its doors.

According to Adam's Hospitality and Tourism Industry Blog, Pazzo on Newbury Street has closed. The article mentions that the space will be taken over by a Japanese restaurant, though no other information on this is currently available.

Pazzo, which first opened in May of 2009, had two floors of dining and bars as well as an outdoor patio area that looked out at Newbury Street. Items on the menu included pizza and pasta, as well as dishes such as beef carpaccio, tuna tartare, grilled salmon, braised short ribs, veal picatta, and braciola.

The person behind the now-closed Pazzo also operates Bacco on Salem Street in the North End, and is going to be opening a new Mediterranean spot called Deco on Washington Street in Somerville.

The address for Pazzo was: Pazzo, 269 Newbury Street, Boston, MA, 02116.

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Update: Hi-Rise Bread Company in Cambridge Closing Brattle Street Location, Opening on Mass. Ave.

[Ed note: This article was updated on August 19 and October 13.]

A bakery and cafe with locations in Harvard Square and Huron Village in Cambridge is apparently closing their Harvard Square spot, and opening a new location between Harvard Square and Porter Square.

Based on information given to us by Eat Boston, Hi-Rise Bread Company is planning on opening on Mass. Ave. by the Wendell Street intersection. A notice on the City of Cambridge website also indicates that Hi-Rise is looking at this space, as it mentions that an upcoming Board of Zoning meeting will take up the case of parking for the restaurant. The case notice also states that the new Hi-Rise would have a capacity of 59.

[August 19 update: According to The Feast (via the Tosci Twitter page), the Brattle Street location of Hi-Rise in Harvard Square is closing on Saturday, August 27, with the new, larger Mass. Ave. spot opening sometime in early September. The location on Concord Avenue in Huron Village will remain open. Thanks to Grub Street Boston for bringing this to our attention.]

[October 13 update: According to @barismo, the new Hi-Rise Bread Company on Mass. Ave. has soft-opened.]

Hi-Rise Bread Company features freshly made breads as well as soups, salads, sandwiches, dinner entrees, and pastries.

The address for the new Hi-Rise is: Hi-Rise Bread Company, 1663 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA, 02138.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Acropolis Opens in Needham

A Greek restaurant has just opened in Needham, moving into the space where several other dining spots have been.

According to several sources, including posters on Chowhound, Acropolis is now open for business on Highland Avenue (a few blocks north of the heart of Needham Center), bringing to this western suburb of Boston a place to get such items as gyros, souvlaki, stuffed grape leaves, moussaka, and other classic Greek fare. Acropolis takes over the spot formerly occupied by such eateries as Gabriella's Bistro, Euro Taste, and Firebird's.

The address for this new Greek restaurant in Needham is: Acropolis, 1257 Highland Avenue, Needham, MA, 02492.

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