Two popular Newton Centre restaurants have a brand new sibling in Newton Highlands: Buttonwood opened its doors on January 9, courtesy of Dave Punch and Shane Smyth, who also preside over Sycamore and Little Big Diner. Buttonwood is located in the former 51 Lincoln restaurant space (51 Lincoln St., Newton Highlands). 51 Lincoln closed in June 2016 after more than a decade in business.
Those familiar with Sycamore will recognize some of the same touches in Buttonwood (which is actually another name for a sycamore tree), although Buttonwood is aimed at being more of a family-friendly spot than Sycamore turned out to be. “Sycamore has become a little more of an adult hangout,” Punch told Eater in September. “Of course we welcome kids, but we want Buttonwood to really be the kind of neighborhood restaurant where everyone feels included. We want it to be a bit more affordable, and we want the food to be a little more rustic.”
Punch said at the time that the menu would be very seasonal and would probably feature a preserves and spreadables section — “simple things you can put on toast — salt cod brandade, pork rillettes” — as well as grilled meat and fish dishes and a substantial selection of sides.
Per social media posts from its first night in business, Buttonwood’s opening menu includes dishes such as “pizza shop” Greek salad with cucumber, olives, and feta; split pea soup with bacon; crispy pork ribs with honey za’atar glaze and labne; moules frites; Portuguese fish stew; Calabrian roasted half chicken; a cheeseburger; a long bone pork chop; and more. Starters range from $9 to $15, while mains range from $15 (the burger) to $30 (a whole bronzino), with a couple pricier outliers — a $44 20-ounce bone-in New York strip and a $50 half Spanish octopus.
Francisco Millan (Row 34) is chef de cuisine, and Julia Bailey and Matt O’Keefe serve as general managers for the restaurant.
Buttonwood is open for dinner from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Wednesday, 5 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, and 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday, with the bar staying open until midnight Monday through Saturday and until 11 p.m. Sunday. Reservations are available via OpenTable for January 13 and beyond, but for the next few days, just show up or call (617) 928-5771.
• Buttonwood [Official Site]
• Sycamore and Little Big Diner Will Get a Family-Friendly Sibling This Fall [EBOS]