When James Beard Award-winning chef Karen Akunowicz departed the South End’s Myers + Chang in June and set about opening her own project, details initially remained sparse. Now, the early word is out: Her first solo venture will be an “Italian-inspired neighborhood enoteca” called Fox and the Knife, set to open in November.
Akunowicz told Food & Wine she purchased a restaurant space in an old building in Southie, which has an open kitchen and seats 75 people. She plans to do minimal redesign within the restaurant while focusing on building a menu with “something for everyone,” at affordable prices.
An Italian restaurant may seem like a big change for Akunowicz, who had been focused on Asian cuisine for the last seven years at Myers + Chang. But prior to that, she spent a year living in Modena, Italy, learning pasta-making, and she also worked at the now-closed Via Matta, Michael Schlow’s Italian restaurant in Back Bay.
Akunowicz’s resume also includes stints at Ten Tables in Jamaica Plain and Oleana in Cambridge. Plus, she competed on the 13th season of Top Chef in 2015, and she co-authored a 2017 cookbook with Myers + Chang co-owner Joanne Chang, Myers + Chang at Home.