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Absinthe Frappes and Chorizo Scotch Quail Eggs at River Bar, Coming Soon to Somerville

Somerville restaurateur Ken Kelly and Staff Meal's Patrick Gilmartin bring a giant patio to the banks of the Mystic River next month at Assembly Row.

This will one day be River Bar.
This will one day be River Bar.
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River Bar is the sixth Somerville project for Ken Kelly, the man behind Brass Union, SaloonFoundry on Elm, and more. With Patrick Gilmartin (of the shuttered Staff Meal truck) in the kitchen, the new restaurant promises a "small" menu of "thoughtfully prepared, seasonally influenced foods." A "culinary bar" by an open kitchen will be the focal point of the interior, and outside, there will be a large patio studded with fire pits.

The latest issues of The Improper Bostonian reveals a few more details about the restaurant, which is set to open in the middle of next month at Somerville's quickly-growing Assembly Row development. For one thing, that patio will seat an impressive 123 diners (compared to just 36 inside, including seven at the aforementioned culinary bar). Aside from the dead of winter, the patio will be usable most of the year thanks to heating and a partial cover.

As for food, it shouldn't come as much of a surprise that Gilmartin will be offering swanky versions of street food, from chorizo Scotch quail eggs (remember those from Staff Meal?) to shrimp chips with black garlic aioli, according to the Improper. Hours will span across lunch (and weekend brunch), dinner, and late-night, perfect for those catching movies at the nearby new movie theater.

Jess Willis will helm the beverage program, focusing on "modern twists on classic drinks." The Improper tantalizingly promises an absinthe frappe.

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