Boston’s Big Night hospitality group is closing its classy downtown cafe, Explorateur, today, March 2, in order to renovate it and replace it this summer with not one but two new Guy Fieri restaurants: Guy Fieri’s Boston Kitchen + Bar and Chicken Guy. (Chicken Guy is stylized with an exclamation point at the end.) Explorateur — located in a historic masonic lodge space at 186 Tremont St., across from Boston Common — has been open for about two and a half years. The expansive cafe has been a popular place for working remotely while sipping on matcha lattes in the morning and cocktails in the evening. All employees are being offered jobs elsewhere in the Big Night universe, according to an announcement from the company.
Now, Big Night is continuing its Donkey Sauce-drenched collaboration with spiky-haired, sunglasses-bedecked television personality and restaurateur Guy Fieri to bring Fieri’s Boston presence from one restaurant to three. (Late last year, Big Night and Fieri opened Guy Fieri’s Tequila Cocina together at the Hub on Causeway development in Boston’s West End.)
Guy Fieri’s Boston Kitchen + Bar, which will serve lunch and dinner daily, will be serving Fieri’s usual brand of over-the-top dishes with “classic New England influences,” per today’s announcement. There’ll be wings, burgers, and more, as well as beer and cocktails. Fieri has “Kitchen + Bar”-branded restaurants in several other cities — there’s one, for example, at Connecticut casino Foxwoods — and most share some core dishes complemented by local specialties.
Meanwhile, Chicken Guy is a chicken-centered fast-casual option; the seven existing locations are in malls and stadiums. Chicken Guy features chicken tenders brined in lemon, pickle, and buttermilk, served with a variety of sauces (yep, there’s Donkey Sauce) and sides.
“The people of New England, and specifically Boston, have always been important to the greater food landscape,” said Fieri via today’s announcement. “And I’ve been lucky enough to meet a bunch of them through my DDD [Diners, Drive-ins and Dives] travels and of course, by feedin’ ‘em at Guy’s Foxwoods Kitchen + Bar and Tequila Cocina. But there’s more cookin’ to be done so I’m stoked to be bringing my Guy’s Kitchen + Bar to Boston as well as Chicken Guy!, servin’ up hand-breaded chicken tenders and 22 scratch made sauces.”
Stay tuned for updates leading up to a summer 2020 opening and the day when Boston eventually slips quietly into a sea of Donkey Sauce, never to be heard from again.