The owners of Harvard Square bistro Trata shuttered the restaurant over the summer for renovations and rebranding, reopening last week as a pub called The Boathouse, complete with nautical decor, including an antique racing shell. The pale yellow and green walls and light bricks give the space an airy, Cape Cod feel.
In August, co-owner Laurence Hopkins (who owns both Trata/The Boathouse and nearby Daedalus with his brother Brendan) appeared before the Cambridge License Commission to get the name change approved to deal with "the marketing issues that they've had with Trata." Hopkins' lawyer mentioned that "a lot of people don't understand that Trata is the Gaelic name for tomato and it just never caught on." Since the American-ish bistro with the Gaelic name wasn't really working out as hoped over its 12 years in existence, the Hopkins brothers, who are from Ireland, opted to rebrand the space into a casual pub, and the name change is meant to appeal to the rowing community in Cambridge. It's nostalgic, as well; the Hopkins brothers grew up on a river in Galway and rowed on it, according to The Harvard Crimson.
The menu features Irish pub classics like shepherd's pie and fish and chips, along with more American comfort food like steak tips, mac and cheese, and popcorn chicken.
· License Commission Hearing Minutes: 8/14/2012 [CambridgeMA.gov]
· Trata in Cambridge's Harvard Square to become The Boathouse [BRT]
· New restaurant opens in the square [The Harvard Crimson]
· All coverage of The Boathouse on Eater [~EBOS~]