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Eat So Much Brunch This Weekend (and More Updates)

A newfound growler freedom, the downside to liquor license reform, and more

Cinnamon bun at Area Four Boston
Cinnamon bun at Area Four Boston
Rachel Leah Blumenthal for Eater

Welcome back to Morning Briefing, an almost-daily round-up of mini news bites to kick off the day.

Memorial Day Weekend

The weather’s not going to be perfect this weekend, but here are a few maps to help you make the most of it:

Growler Freedom

Until now, Massachusetts beer enthusiasts have had to get a separate growler for each brewery if they wanted to bring beer home via growler: It was against the law for a brewery to fill up another brewery’s growler. But the Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission has just released a new advisory, reports the Boston Business Journal, allowing a bit more growler freedom. Now you can get a growler from anywhere filled anywhere (if the brewery is ok with it) — as long as the growler is blank, not featuring the labeling of another brewery. Growlers can be any size and don’t need to be made of glass. As BBJ notes, Vermont and New Hampshire already allow breweries to fill bottles brought in from elsewhere.

Temporary Shutters

City health inspectors have temporarily shut down neighboring Boston restaurants Back Bay Sandwich and Cafe Med (both located at 31 St. James Ave. in Back Bay) after eight people reportedly became sick with salmonella after eating at the restaurants, reports NBC Boston; “several violations” were found upon inspection.

Worthless Liquor Licenses

A downside of liquor license reform: Those who invested in pricey licenses years ago may now be holding onto worthless licenses, because new businesses are able to go directly to the licensing commission and pay a fraction of the cost for a new license instead of paying tens of thousands (or hundreds of thousands) to buy an existing license from a closing or closed business. Cambridge Day delves into the problem, highlighting the struggles of the owners of now-shuttered T.T.’s and River Gods to sell licenses that cost them $60,000 in 1973 and $120,000 in 2001 respectively. And they’re only two of an estimated 200 or more license holders who will be running into this problem if they ever decide to close.

One Thing You Should Eat Today

Perhaps this isn’t fair, but you can’t eat this today. You’ll have to wait until tomorrow. We don’t run this segment on weekends, but occasionally there are weekend brunch dishes that must be highlighted, so here’s One Thing You Should Eat...This Weekend. Head to Area Four’s South End location, sidle up to the bar, and order yourself a brunch-friendly cocktail and the giant cinnamon bun (pictured above), topped with a caramel bacon frosting. Most cinnamon buns look good, but far too many don’t live up to their appearance and yield a mouthful of dry dough when you take a bite. Not so at Area Four, which serves a bun that’s light, soft, sweet, and even smoky (thanks, bacon). Follow it up with the Hong Kong waffle (see below) if you need even more sugar. Area Four serves brunch on Saturday and Sunday from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Hong Kong waffle at Area Four (South End)
Hong Kong waffle at Area Four Boston
Rachel Leah Blumenthal for Eater

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Cafe Med

, Boston, MA (857) 317-2737

Area Four Boston

264 East Berkeley Street, , MA 02118 (857) 317-4805 Visit Website