A South End restaurant that closed earlier this year only to reopen last month is closing once again — and a local restaurant group that owns the property is opening a new dining spot within the space.
Merrill & Co. will say its final farewell to Boston at the end of the month, according to Boston Restaurant Talk, and a familiar name in the local restaurant world will be taking over the space and launching a concept that began next door.
Boston Nightlife Ventures (The Tap Trailhouse, Griddler's Burgers and Dogs, Certified Meatball Co.) will reportedly open a full-blown Akinto, the name of a Southeast Asian-inspired concept from chef Patrick Enage that has been popping up at BNV's Wink & Nod, in the Merrill & Co. space. The group has made no secret of the fact that it intended to eventually open Akinto as a stand-alone restaurant. Meanwhile, the next long-term residency at Wink & Nod will begin on January 5 — Brendan Pelley's Pelekasis.
Merrill & Co. was part of the BiNA Family Hospitality Group (JM Curley and Bogie's Place, Lala Rokh, Bin 26 Enoteca). It served up American fare and seafood at 1 Appleton St. for about a year and a half, but closed for the first time in June to prep for a competition to find a new owner for the space.
In October, Ipswich Custom opened in the space for a blip, and in November, the restaurant returned as a food truck incubator. BiNA Family Hospitality Group owner Babak Bina created this "Truck and Mortar" concept as a collaboration with Stock Pot Malden, a commercial kitchen and incubator, in order to feature the people behind various food trucks.
But Merrill & Co. is now gone for good as BNV moves forward with establishing Akinto in the South End.