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East Asian ‘Tapas’ Restaurant Purple Shell Debuts in South Boston Today

Now open near the Broadway T stop, Purple Shell serves sushi as well as small plates inspired by East and Southeast Asia

Various Southeast Asian tapas sit atop a black plate garnished with leases, twigs, and sprigs. The plated dish sits atop a grayish-blue surface.
A spread from Purple Shell in South Boston
Tina Liu Photography

It’s a good week for small plates inspired by cuisines of Asia: Thai “tapas” bar Mahaniyom just debuted in Brookline Village, and Purple Shell opens in South Boston today (11 West Broadway, near the Broadway MBTA station), serving a “tapas-style” menu that includes sushi and a variety of hot and cold small plates inspired by East Asian cuisines, particularly Japanese, with some flavors coming in from Southeast Asia as well.

The ownership behind Purple Shell also owns Sushi Joy in Plymouth, which serves a mix of Chinese and Japanese food.

Purple Shell is serving dishes such as oysters with uni, creme fraiche, and quail eggs; salmon with squid ink and tapioca crackers; Malaysian-style barbecue lamb chops; gyoza; scallops with caviar; tempura shrimp; and a selection of sushi and sashimi. Some Chinese and Chinese-American classics make an appearance as well, such as General Gau and walnut shrimp.

The restaurant — which has taken over the address of Stephi’s on Southie, which closed in mid-2018 — has a full liquor license. Its cocktail menu includes the eponymous Purple Shell (Bulleit bourbon, lemon, sugar, egg whites, and plum wine), a rum Negroni, a lychee and vanilla cocktail made with Soho (a lychee-flavored liqueur), and more. There is also wine by the glass and bottle, a selection of bottled beers, and sake.

Purple Shell’s kitchen is open seven days a week from 4 p.m. to 11:30 p.m., while its bar remains open until midnight.

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It’s o-FISH-ally Friday, gotta get our sushi fix

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