It’s Tiki time in Boston as the acclaimed team behind a coastal Italian restaurant in Boston’s South End plans to expand its reach within the neighborhood, adding a new restaurant across the street. The Bar Mezzana (360 Harrison Ave., Boston) team announced today that it will introduce Shore Leave in late 2018, opening the new Tiki restaurant at 345 Harrison Ave., as Boston Magazine notes.
The Shore Leave team consists of partners Colin Lynch (executive chef), Heather Lynch (general manager), Jefferson Macklin (business manager), and Ryan Lotz (beverage director), all Barbara Lynch Gruppo alumni (Colin and Heather are not related to Barbara.) To design Shore Leave, the team is working with Boston-based firm Hacin + Associates, who also worked on Myers + Chang and State Park. Shore Leave will be located inside an apartment building that is set to open in spring 2018.
While the team is not yet revealing specifics of the menu, Shore Leave has made its first splash on the internet: A landing page for the restaurant sets the tone with a palm frond-bedecked logo and background music that you may find relaxing depending on your thoughts on websites with background music. Shore Leave also has fledgling Instagram and Facebook pages set up.
Shore Leave will join venues such as the longtime Boston(ish) Tiki fixture Kowloon (948 Broadway, Saugus), along with the recently opened Tiki Rock (2 Broad St., Downtown Boston), in embracing Polynesian-inspired dishes and island vibes. A similar ambiance arrived last month in Brookline Village, courtesy of Blossom Bar (295 Washington St., Brookline), which — although not explicitly Tiki-inspired — features similar tropical elements, from palm and bamboo decor to a cocktail menu with drinks like the Girl From Ipanema (with Madagascar vanilla, creme de menthe, passion fruit, lemon, and egg white) and a Bocadillo Sour (with guava, mascarpone, lime, and mint).
Shore Leave’s big sibling, Bar Mezzana, which opened in mid-2016, is a mainstay on Eater Boston’s map of Boston’s 38 essential restaurants thanks to its sophisticated crudo dishes, pasta, and more, not to mention its fun happenings like the weekly “Chicken ParMezzana” special. It was also a nominee for Eater Boston’s 2016 Restaurant of the Year, and it’s a solid Sunday brunch option, especially for those traveling to the neighborhood to visit the SoWa market. Hint: Get the cinnamon bun.
2018 is going to be eventful in the South End, with the arrival of Shore Leave in addition to Tim Maslow’s forthcoming Japanese brasserie, tentatively called Whaling in Oklahoma, which could open in June at an undisclosed address widely believed to be the current home of Tremont 647 and Sister Sorel, which are slated to close this spring. But first, Southern Proper (600 Harrison Ave., Boston) will open in just a couple of weeks, and Bootleg Special (400 Tremont St., Boston) debuted earlier this month. Stay tuned for updates on Shore Leave and more in the ever-growing South End dining scene.