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Drool Over Estelle's, Now Open

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[Photos: Rachel Leah Blumenthal]

Estelle's finally opens tomorrow, bringing "kind of Gulf Coast style" Southern cuisine to the South End: bacon hushpuppies to Cajun cornmeal-crusted catfish to (gasp) red velvet moon pie. Yeah, you'll want to save room for dessert. The new venture from the Wilcox Hospitality Group is helmed by Brian Poe (Poe's Kitchen at The Rattlesnake, Tip Tap Room) and Executive Chef Eric Gburski, who most recently served as both general manager and executive chef at East Coast Grill in Cambridge.

The corner space, a former video store and pizza joint, is long and narrow, but the seating layout leaves plenty of breathing room. In addition to regular tables, which have benches on the wall side, there are also some high-tops along windows and 11 seats at the bar. A red and gray motif complements the rustic wooden tabletops and benches, and a spray of bare lightbulbs brightens the front seating area (not that it needs any extra brightening as it already benefits from a large bay window.)

Estelle's takes its name from a longtime restaurant and club that used to exist nearby; the family of its former owner gave their blessing to the Wilcox Hospitality Group to give new life to the name's legacy. Gburski and Poe are especially excited about the bar aspect of the new Estelle's, so it could very well become a new entertainment destination. The beverage program, managed by general manager Craig Lovewell, features 30 beers on tap, an additional 70 bottled beers, and plenty of wine.

As for the food, prices range from $3 to $8.50 for starters and sides, $10.50 to $12.50 for po' boys with fries, and $17.50 to $22.50 for entrees. Check out the full menu here, and get ready to show up at 5 PM tomorrow to give it all a try. Better get in your dessert order quickly; Poe previously revealed that if red velvet ended up on the menu, he'd be "in the corner hoarding it for myself." Dinner begins at 5 PM seven days a week, and the bar closes at 2 AM. A weekend brunch runs from 11 AM to 3 PM.

· All coverage of Estelle's on Eater [~EBOS~]

Estelle's

782 Tremont St, Boston, MA 02118 857-250-2999 Visit Website

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