A downtown Boston restaurant called Foumami (225 Franklin St.) known for its Asian sandwiches is expanding to Harvard Square. The restaurant’s second location will be at 33 Brattle St., Cambridge, in the space currently occupied by Flat Patties, Foumami founder and CEO Michael Y. J. Wang told Eater via email.
The Harvard Square outpost’s menu will closely mimic that of the original location on Franklin Street, said Wang — various Asian-inspired sandwiches served on shaobing bread, tossed salads, rice bowls, and noodle bowls. The second Foumami will also introduce new dinner options, as well as snacks and desserts, and it will be open seven days a week, serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Foumami is a portmanteau of fú (the Chinese word for Buddha) and umami, and it is meant to mean “what Buddha finds to be most delicious,” according to the company’s website.
“It is going to become a venue where the Harvard Square community can lounge in a fun and entertaining environment, appease their appetite for fantastic scratch-cooked meals showcasing Foumami’s truly unique flavor profiles, and enjoy all of this while being served with Foumami’s well-known friendly, speedy, and efficient service,” Wang told Eater. “As a Harvard MBA Class of 2001 [graduate], it feels like I’m finally going home after 18 years away.”
The Harvard Square dining scene has been changing rapidly. Part of that change has been spurred by North Carolina-based real estate company Asana Partners, which began snatching up properties — and in turn demanding higher rents from tenants — in 2017. Asana’s spending spree ultimately meant the end for Crema Cafe. And it will apparently mean the end for Flat Patties, too.
While Flat Patties currently remains open, Scout Cambridge reported in January 2019 that the burger joint expected this year to be its last in operation. Flat Patties owner Tom Brush — who also owns Felipe’s Taqueria, which is also housed in a Brattle Street property owned by Asana — told Scout that sales weren’t strong enough to account for rent spikes. Brush also told Scout at the time that Felipe’s Taqueria will remain open.
• Foumami to Open in Cambridge’s Harvard Square [BRT]
• Tracking the Changes to Harvard Square’s Dining Landscape [EBOS]
• The Soul of Crema Cafe Will Live on in Revival Cafe [EBOS]
• Flat Patties Expects to Close or Move This Year Due to Anticipated Rent Increase [SC]