Big Night Entertainment Group is about to roll out its latest venue: Gem Restaurant & Lounge, which will be opening in Downtown Crossing as soon as the end of this week. UrbanDaddy reports that the new spot is slated for a weekend opening, and Eater hears that the 36-seat dining room will be reservation-only and opulently decked out, seeking to emulate a European dining club and claiming stylistic inspiration from the Hotel Costes in Paris. Executive chef Kevin Long, who previously - and perhaps still - cooked at Red Lantern, will preside over the kitchen, serving "American Brasserie fare with eclectic international flourishes" and trend-nods as in shrimp & grits with tater tots and Russian dressing. Also on the menu: grilled pizza and duck confit quesadilla.
The bar will mix now de rigueur craft cocktails like the Mandarin Garnet, with Stoli Ohranj, Crème di Violette, lemon simple, and peach bitters. Big Night opened Red Lantern Restaurant & Lounge in Back Bay last year, which surprised Globe food critic Devra First into winning a spot on her year-end roundup of superlative dishes. The group also runs the upcoming Empire - previously called Shrine - as well as Shrine Asian Kitchen Lounge & Nightclub at Foxwoods. Following the opening of JM Curley five months back, this could be proof of a revitalized Downtown Crossing dining scene.
· Parisian sexiness in Downtown Crossing [UD]
· 11 Favorite dishes of 2011 [BG]
· Kevin Long [StarChefs]