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All the Boston Food News That Mattered in June 2019: From Cocktails to Crepes

The month in openings, closings, top news, and more

Aloha Catrina at Tiger Mama
Aloha Catrina at Tiger Mama
Katie Faust Stryjewski/Eater

Summer is here, and a million restaurants are opening. Time Out Market Boston and Encore Boston Harbor brought 15 new restaurants apiece into the local dining scene this month, and that’s not all. Unfortunately the Boston area saw some restaurant closures as well, including a few old-timers.

Read on for a summary of June 2019, including the most-read news stories and maps, the openings, and the closings.

Glamour shot of a burger on a white background. There are potato strings on the side.
The Craigie “OG” at Craigie Burger at Time Out Market Boston
Sarah Storrer/Eater
  1. Beer News From Boston and Beyond, Updated Weekly: Brewery openings, beer gardens, and more, with some cider, wine, and liquor news thrown in for good measure.
  2. Time Out Market Boston Arrives in Fenway, Bursting With Food and Drink: The first Boston food hall of 2019 is now open.
  3. Suburban Boston Dining News, Updated Weekly: A round-up of restaurant openings, closings, and other news outside of the immediate Boston vicinity.
  4. Extravagant Encore Casino Opens This Weekend in Everett With 15 Restaurants: The food options include a 24-hour Dunkin’, a wonderland-themed buffet, an ultra-fancy steakhouse, and more.
  5. A Colorful New Life Alive Location Debuts in Back Bay: Life Alive opened its fifth location on Wednesday, June 12.
  6. Stunning Geometric Treats Land in Back Bay: Jonquils Bakery & Cafe is now open on Newbury Street.
  7. Tatte to Open Giant ‘Bakery Wonderland’ in South Boston: There will be a full cafe alongside production space, a test kitchen, and offices.
  8. New England Dining News Beyond Massachusetts, Updated Weekly: Restaurant openings, closings, and other news in Portsmouth, Portland, Providence, and beyond.
  9. Detroit-Style Pizza Comes to Somerville: Avenue opened Wednesday, June 5, with a gastropub-style menu.
  10. LaCroix Is Finally Legal in Massachusetts: The carbonated beverage had been sold in the Commonwealth illegally until now.

Sai ua at 9Zaab
Sai ua at 9Zaab, one of the hottest new restaurants in June
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater
  1. The Hottest Restaurants in Boston Right Now: Boston’s best new hotspots, updated monthly.
  2. The Hottest New Brunches in Boston Right Now: Tired of your usual brunching routine?
  3. The Ultimate Visitor’s Guide to Eating in Boston: Iconic dishes, neighborhood guides, essential eats, and more recommendations for the hungry tourist.
  4. Where to Eat Thai Food in and Around Boston: From pad thai to khao soi and beyond.
  5. The Prettiest Cocktails in Boston Right Now: Whether you can’t wait to post your next cocktail on Instagram or you just appreciate a nice-looking drink, try these eye-catching drinks around town.
  6. Take Your Dining to New Heights on These Boston-Area Rooftops: Don’t just get outside — get up high and take in all the views Boston has to offer.
  7. The Ultimate $1 Oyster Guide, Summer 2019: Where to find dollar oyster deals in and around Boston.
  8. Boston’s Best Food and Drink Events: The local events you’ll actually want to attend, updated weekly.
  9. A Handy Map of Boston-Area Barbecue Joints: So much meat.
  10. One Day Boston Will Have a Food Hall on Every Corner: Here’s a rundown on all the Boston-area food halls set to open in the next year or so.

Fried clam roll at Saltie Girl at Time Out Market Boston
Fried clam roll at Saltie Girl at Time Out Market Boston
Sarah Storrer/Eater
  • Avenue (158 Boston Ave., Somerville): Detroit-style pizza, mac and cheese, grain bowls, and more in Ball Square.
  • Ban Toi (1035 Dorchester Ave., Dorchester, Boston): A Vietnamese restaurant near Savin Hill.
  • Blue Bottle Coffee (88 Ames St., Kendall Square, Cambridge): The fourth local outpost for the California-based coffee roaster and cafe chain.
  • Chef Ronsky’s Trattoria (3A Boylston St., the Street, Chestnut Hill): Italian cafe Ronsky’s has transformed into a full-service Italian restaurant serving lunch and dinner.
  • Ciao Bella (5 North Sq., North End, Boston): North Square Oyster has been revamped into an Italian restaurant, although some North Square Oyster raw bar items remain available at Ciao Bella’s bar.
  • Coco Leaf (303 Newbury St., Back Bay, Boston): Dorchester’s Vietnamese dessert cafe, specializing in che, has expanded to the former Barrington space in Back Bay.
  • Dave & Buster’s (1245 Worcester St., Natick): Located at the Natick Mall, this is the third Massachusetts location for the gaming-and-dining chain.
  • Dig Inn (25 Thompson Pl., Seaport District, Boston): The fast-casual New York-based chain is focused on seasonal, sustainable ingredients. This is the fourth Boston location.
  • Encore Boston Harbor (1 Broadway, Everett): The years-in-the-works Wynn Resorts casino and hotel is now open and has 15 restaurants, including Fratelli (an Italian collaboration between two North End restaurateurs, Frank DePasquale and Nick Varano), two seafood spots called the Oyster Bar and Waterfront (featuring Neptune Oyster alum John Ross), a very expensive steakhouse, and more.
  • Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana (75 Middlesex Tpke., Burlington): The second Massachusetts location (the first is in Chestnut Hill) for the legendary New Haven “apizza” chain, which now numbers 11.
  • Grainmaker (248 Elm St., Davis Square, Somerville): This fast-casual downtown purveyor of gluten-free grain bowls has expanded to the former Amsterdam Falafelshop location in Davis.
  • Ilona (783 Tremont St., South End, Boston): Eastern Mediterranean — touching on the cuisines of Greece, Israel, Lebanon, Turkey, and Georgia — from part of the team behind Kava Neo-Taverna.
  • Jonquils Bakery & Cafe (125 Newbury St., Back Bay, Boston): A cafe serving unique, geometric desserts.
  • Life Alive (431 Boylston St., Back Bay, Boston): The fifth location for the growing vegetarian chain — and the second with its flashy new design and branding.
  • Paani (530A Boston Post Rd., Sudbury): Paani has moved to a bigger space, serving Indian food for lunch and dinner.
  • Paris Creperie (60 Seaport Blvd., Seaport District, Boston): An expansion of a Brookline creperie, but this one has a cocktail menu designed by Brother Cleve.
  • Pepita Coffee (284 Broadway, Cambridge): The new coffee shop inside of Lamplighter Brewing, replacing Longfellows. It features breakfast tacos and more.
  • Pin Ming (5 Beach St., Chinatown, Boston): Bubble tea and cheese tea in the former Cuong’s Vegan space.
  • Reef Bar (1 Central Wharf, Downtown Boston): The Aquarium’s revamped outdoor bar features seafood charcuterie, lobster rolls, and cocktails.
  • ReelHouse (552 Victory Rd., Marina Bay, Quincy): A seafood-focused restaurant with a counterpoint in East Boston. Water shuttle service is available from South Boston.
  • Revolution Axe Throwing (73 Norman St., Everett): Ax-throwing and local beers. Customers can order in food from the Village Bar & Grill around the corner.
  • Second Cup Coffee Company (97 Causeway St., West End, Boston): The first New England location for the Canadian cafe chain.
  • T&B Pizza (251 Washington St., Union Square, Somerville): Two types of wood-fired pizza — Neapolitan-style and Roman-style (al taglio) — from the Bronwyn team, a couple doors down from Bronwyn.
  • Time Out Market Boston (401 Park Dr., Fenway, Boston): A massive food hall with 15 food vendors — including Saltie Girl, Tasting Counter, Craigie Burger (a Craigie on Main offshoot), and other recognizable local restaurants and chefs — plus two bars, a demo kitchen, outdoor dining space, and more.
  • Uva Wine Bar (46 Main St., Plymouth): A self-serve wine bar (using the WineStation system) with cheese and charcuterie boards and dessert.
  • Yella (25 Western Ave., Gloucester): Featuring water views, this Mediterranean restaurant is the expansion of a decade-old counterpart in Andover.

Noca Provisions pastries
Baked goods from Noca Provisions
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater
  • Baity (84 Spring St., Medford): In business for about a year, this was one of the only Egyptian restaurants in the area.
  • Budabing’s 50’s Cafe (1060 Main St., Millis): The diner had been around for over 20 years; it was destroyed in a fire.
  • Commune Kitchen (203 Broadway, Arlington): Pizza, tartines, and poutine in a little shop in Arlington, from owners with baking backgrounds. Breadboard Bakery will open in its place.
  • Coney Island Ice Cream Cafe (1284 Washington St., West Newton): The cafe’s owners have retired.
  • Dorado Tacos (401 Harvard St., Brookline): This decade-old taqueria was especially known for its fish tacos. Jamaica Plain’s Soup Shack will open a new location in its place.
  • El Centro (236 Washington St., Brookline Village): Chef-owner Allan Rodriguez reportedly said that demand was too high at this location and the business couldn’t accommodate it. A Thai restaurant will take over the space.
  • Gen Sou En Tea House (299 Harvard St., Coolidge Corner, Brookline): The Japanese tea house — which is connected to a longtime tea company in Japan — has closed after about a year and a half.
  • Lexx Restaurant (1666 Massachusetts Ave., Lexington): This Lexington mainstay was around for 25 years, serving dishes like burgers, mac and cheese, and osso bucco. An Indian fusion restaurant will open in its place.
  • The Lower Depths (476 Commonwealth Ave., Boston): This 13-year-old cash-only joint was known for its tater tots and hot dogs; a menu change a couple years ago replaced most of the hot dogs with tacos.
  • Noca Provisions (156 Rindge Ave., North Cambridge): From the same owner as Season to Taste, Noca was a cafe that served a wide range of grab-and-go prepared foods.
  • The Tavern From Tower Square (119 Washington St., Plainville): The tavern has closed after 24 years, but it will be reborn at the same location, albeit in a smaller form, thanks to the bar manager (from the ownership family) and sous chef.
  • Wired Puppy (250 Newbury St., Back Bay, Boston): The cafe, which used to be dog-friendly, closed in June after about a decade. A Provincetown location remains open.