Welcome back to AM Intel, a Monday morning round-up of mini news bites to kick off the week.
Hanukkah Cocktails and Comedy Club Treats
Expert bartender Naomi Levy (a longtime alum of Eastern Standard) is having a busy few months in Somerville, working on two separate temporary projects in Union Square. For one, she’s reviving her Hanukkah-themed pop-up bar, Maccabee Bar, for its second year. She launched the pop-up last year at downtown cocktail bar Better Sorts Social Club, where she was working at the time, and it’ll be at Backbar this year (7 Sanborn Ct., Union Square, Somerville) from December 16 through December 29 (closed on December 24 and 25). Levy will be behind the bar on December 16 and 23. Keep an eye out for drinks such as the kugel-inspired Have a Ball (cognac, cinnamon, and creme fraiche) and the jelly doughnut-inspired Hebrew Hammer (vodka, “leavened” sugar, lemon, and raspberry), as well as Hanukkah-themed snacks, such as latkes.
Levy is also consulting on an overhaul of Variety Bar, the cocktail bar at the Comedy Studio at Bow Market (1 Bow Market Wy., Union Square, Somerville), with her new menu (including snacks) beginning on November 29. (The bar will be closed for a few days leading up to the change, starting on November 24.) Drinks will include a Yoo-hoo espresso martini, a deli-inspired Old Fashioned with pastrami spice, canned wines, beer, and more. There will also be some simple snacks, such as popcorn, Cup Noodles, and cereal, but customers can also bring in food from any of Bow Market’s numerous food vendors. Levy will stick around Variety Bar for about six months.
A Korean Food Truck Puts Down Temporary Roots in Kendall Square
Food business incubator Commonwealth Kitchen is welcoming the third six-month tenant to its Kendall Square retail kiosk, according to a recent newsletter. Bibim Box, a local Korean food truck, is slated to follow in the footsteps of the Dining Car and Jamaica Mi Hungry, serving takeout food at 300B Athenaeum St., Cambridge. The grand opening will be on December 9. While the business hasn’t announced a menu for the kiosk yet, the truck serves bibimbap and a few other items.
In Other News...
- Asian grocery store chain 99 Ranch Market will open its first New England store in Quincy early next year, taking over a former Big Y space and joining a large handful of other Asian markets in Quincy, including C-Mart and Kam Man. It may be the first of several Massachusetts locations.
- Worker-owned food co-op Equal Exchange — which until recently operated a coffee shop near North Station — is in talks to buy Jamaica Plain’s two City Feed stores.
- The ubiquitous coffee chain formerly known as Dunkin’ Donuts is getting rid of its foam cups by 2020, putting an end to “double-cupping.” In other Dunkin’ news, the company is suing an East Boston franchisee, seeking to shut down the 13 Maverick Sq. shop entirely following a temporary shutdown for health code violations that were found after a passerby posted a video of mice scurrying around the shop.
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