Welcome to the fall 2020 edition of the Eater Boston restaurant openings roundup; this page is updated occasionally throughout the season, with the most recent updates at the top, highlighting new restaurants that have opened in the Boston area in recent weeks. (Here’s last season’s archive, including Ivory Pearl in Brookline, a new Boston waterfront location of the Daily Catch, some new debuts at Fenway food hall Time Out Market Boston, and more.)
As of June 22, a number of Boston-area restaurants have resumed dine-in service following three months of takeout and delivery only. Likewise, some new restaurant openings are offering indoor table service right away. The level of service offered is indicated in each description. However, this should not be taken as endorsement for dining in, as there are still safety concerns: For updated information on coronavirus cases in the state, please visit the Massachusetts COVID-19 website. Studies indicate that there is a lower exposure risk when outdoors, but the level of risk involved with patio dining is contingent on restaurants following strict social distancing and other safety guidelines.
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December 22, 2020: A Speakeasy in the Leather District, Peruvian Food in Charlestown, Pancake Batter Corndogs in Allston, and Exceptional Sourdough in North Cambridge
Allston is already the dope spot for Korean fried chicken in Boston, and it just got even doper. Fiya Chicken opened in December, and offers twice-fried chicken in wing, tender, and sandwich form, as well as corndogs fried in pancake batter. We repeat: corndogs fried in pancake batter. Fiya is open daily from 1 p.m. till 10 p.m., and diners can order takeout and delivery online.
Beloved doughnut mini-chain Blackbird Doughnuts opened another location, this time on Charles Street in Beacon Hill. The Beacon Hill shop features all the classics — Boston cream, vanilla glaze, chocolate sprinkle, the eponymous Blackbird, and more — as well as a menu of coffee and tea drinks that are exclusive to it and the Newton Centre location. Doughnut cravers can order takeout and delivery online.
The Brewer’s Fork team recently opened Dovetail — part full-service restaurant, part sandwich, beer, and wine shop — in the Charlestown Navy Yard.
Also in Charlestown, a Peruvian restaurant called Peruvian Taste opened at 78 Arlington Ave. in the space formerly occupied by the Charlestown Cafe. Its menu features a long list of American breakfast options (an homage to the former occupants), as well as popular Peruvian dishes like lomo saltado (steak sautéed with onions and tomatoes and served with french fries and rice), causa rellena de pollo (a dish made by layering chicken with potatoes), and aguadito (Peruvian chicken soup). Diners can order online via various delivery services.
A vegan ghost kitchen called Stalk Kitchen recently opened inside the Lower Mills Tavern (2269 Dorchester Ave.). Stalk is open for pickup and delivery (diners can order both on the restaurant’s website) daily from 4:30 p.m. till close. Stalk’s menu is fully vegan, and features dishes such as delicata squash risotto, tofu steak with spinach and creamy butternut barley, and whole wheat spaghetti with rosemary mushrooms and baby kale.
Stillwater chef and owner Sarah Wade makes some of the best comfort food in the city. It’s fitting, then, that her new spot — the Mac Bar — focusses on the greatest of all comfort foods: mac and cheese. Tucked inside Stillwater, Mac Bar’s menu features nine variations on the comfort food classic — steak and bleu cheese mac and cheese, anyone?— a “create your own” option, as well as sides like tots, potato chips, and french fries. Mac Bar is open daily from 11 a.m. till 9:15 p.m., and diners can order takeout and delivery online.
The Eventide Fenway team recently (and very quietly) opened a burger and wings joint in Fenway. XO Burger & Wings shares an address with Eventide (1321 Boylston St.), and is takeout and delivery only. It’s open Monday, Thursday, and Friday from 5 p.m. till 9 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from noon till 9 p.m.
What used to be a private dining space — as well as a resurrection of legendary hot dog cart Speed’s Hot Dogs — inside French spot Troquet on South is now a speakeasy called Offsuit (107 South St., though guests should enter at 5 Utica St.). The bar offers a mix of original cocktails — the “Smooth Caroline” features gin, raspberry, lime, and Lambrusco — and classic cocktails — Alaska, gin gimlet, dark and stormy — as well as wine by the glass.
The bar describes its food as “globally inspired bar fare,” and the menu features crispy pig’s ears, a pork chop sandwich, yakitori skewers, and a double burger. There is no takeout or delivery, and service is based on a first come, first served basis. Offsuit cannot accommodate parties of more than four people. Hours of operation are Tuesday through Saturday from 4 p.m. till 9:30 p.m.
Table by Jen Royle (445 Hanover St.) expanded in November to include a market, which features a coffee bar and offers sandwiches, cookies, and other pastries and desserts. Customers can place takeout orders online.
A Thai restaurant called Rutchada opened at 153 Belgrade Ave. in Roslindale in early November. Its menu is vast and features a number of Thai curries, and various noodle dishes, including drunken noodles, pad see ew, pad Thai, and more. Rutchada is open from 11 a.m. till 9 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, and from 11 a.m. till 9:30 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. It’s closed on Mondays. Diners can order takeout and delivery online.
Stonewall Kitchen’s new PB&J-centric cafe opened inside the Boston Children’s Museum in late November, sparking outrage on Facebook among parents of children with peanut allergies.
Following the October opening of Café Beatrice at the Cambridge Crossing development (see below), sibling spot the Lexington is now also open (100 N. First St.), with their other sibling at the development, Geppetto, still to come (in 2021). Together in one building, the trio form “a hotel with no rooms,” as chef and owner Will Gilson puts it. He and the team are also behind Puritan & Co. in Inman Square.
The Lexington is a restaurant and cocktail bar with a rooftop terrace, currently serving dinner starting at 4 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. The menu is meant to be approachable and locally sourced, featuring dishes like baked stuffed clams, crab cakes, glazed short ribs, wild mushroom cavatelli, burgers, and more.
Reservations for indoor dining are currently available from 4 to 8 p.m. (outdoor dining isn’t currently available), and walk-ins are also welcome. Diners can also order takeout or delivery from 5 to 9 p.m. (That same online ordering page can be used for Café Beatrice orders during the day.)
A new pizza-focused restaurant opened in Harvard Square on November 21: Source (27 Church St., Cambridge) has taken over the location of another pizzeria, Cambridge 1, which specialized in grilled pizzas and was open from 2002 until late 2019.
Source’s executive chef, Brian Kevorkian, is an alum of Grill 23 and Cinquecento. He’s serving wood-fired pizzas, pastas, and more. The restaurant’s name refers to a goal of sourcing 90% of the food and beverage ingredients from within 100 miles of the restaurant, so drinkers won’t be surprised to find names like Aeronaut, Idle Hands, and Bully Boy among the booze options.
The restaurant is offering indoor dining, takeout, and delivery daily, with the to-go options including party packs during Patriots games (pizza, wings, etc.), DIY pizza kits, and more.
Also in Harvard Square, Wachusett Brewing opened a brewpup in the space in the Garage formerly occupied by John Harvard’s Brewery and Ale House. The Wachusett Brew Yard (33 Dunster St.) offers a large selection of the brewery’s many beers, as well as a pub menu that features kettle chip nachos, wings, pizzas, and more. It’s currently open from noon till 8 p.m. Thursday through Sunday.
The sourdough, brownies, and cookies are all compulsory at La Saison Bakery, which opened near the Fresh Pond Reservation at 407 Concord Ave. in early December.
A French-inspired bakery called Turenne recently opened inside of T & B Pizza in Union Square, and the wood-fired bagels are not to be missed. Turenne is open 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday, and online ordering is available.
Otto Pizza opened another pizzeria in the suburbs, this time in Andover (27 Main St.) across the street from the old town hall. Due to the pandemic, the Andover location will be open for pickup and delivery only initially, but plans to open its dining room — which includes a bar with 12 beer taps — sometime in the future.
Curds & Co. owner Jenn Mason recently opened a “no-cook restaurant” inside the Brookline Booksmith (283 Harvard St., Brookline), aka Greater Boston’s best bookstore. The restaurant is called Novel Kitchen (lol). No food is cooked on site — Novel Kitchen partners with local cooks and makers to procure cheese plates, mezze plates, and smoked salmon plates, for example. Brookline Booksmith just got its liquor license, so cheese and wine is very much an option. It’s open daily from 11:30 a.m. till 7:30 p.m.
The folks behind Cambridge darling Loyal Nine recently opened a new restaurant called Northern Spy (4 Rolling Mill Way, Canton). Located just southwest of the city in quaint Canton, MA, the restaurant focusses on the same farm-to-table ethos as its sibling restaurant, and is similarly inspired by historic New England, but with a more family friendly vibe. The menu features smoked bluefish pate, clam chowder, flatbread pizzas, housemade pasta, a burger, Maine sea scallops, and more. It’s open for takeout and select delivery (in Canton and some surrounding communities) for the time being, but plans to open its dining room at some date in the future.
Tim and Nancy Cushman — the duo behind the Leather District’s high-end sushi spot O Ya and Fenway’s beloved izakaya Hojoko — opened Bianca (47 Boylston St., Chestnut Hill) back in November. In keeping with their other restaurants, the Chestnut Hill spot has some Japanese influences (sushi rolls, crispy nori sushi tacos, lobster served with dashi fondue), but it’s Roman-style pizza and housemade pasta that steal the show here.
Also in Chestnut hill, Sweet & Sage Patisserie popped up at the Street Chestnut Hill toward the end of December, and will remain open throughout 2021. Customers can order cookies, cakes, pastries, and brownies directly from the company’s website.
A restaurant called Zuzu Momo specializing in — you guessed it — momos just opened in Everett, and is serving a mix of fine dining and street food, according to its Yelp page. The main focus is its momo menu, but it also offers various curries, biryani, tandoori chicken, and wings. Diners can order takeout and delivery online.
Square Mfg. Co. is the latest addition to Greater Boston’s small but growing Detroit-style pizza scene. Located at 935 Worcester St. in Natick, this pizzeria is available for takeout only. Diners can order directly from the restaurant’s website.
This Newton village is quickly becoming a hotspot for sweet treats. Lakon Paris Patisserie (1169 Walnut St., Newton) opened in early December in the space formerly occupied by Stacks Espresso Bar, and is the latest sweet-centric shop in the neighborhood, offering items such as eclairs, macarons, and tiramisu. Of note: Owner Jenny Kiangkaew is an alum of Barbara Lynch’s famed Menton.
Boston’s southern suburbs recently got an Israeli-inspired BBQ restaurant. A La Esh (370 South Main St., Sharon) — its sister restaurant Simcha is also in Sharon — uses spices typical of Middle Eastern cuisine and techniques typical of the BBQ found in America’s southern states to bring something new an unexpected to the table. Diners can order takeout and delivery online.
Garbanzo Mediterranean Fresh (41 Bond St., Watertown) is the latest restaurant to open in Watertown’s Arsenal Yards development. The chain operates more than 20 locations nationwide, including one at 134 Boylston St. in the Back Bay, and offers pitas, gyros, kabobs, bowls, and more. Diners can order takeout (curbside available) and delivery online.
November 2, 2020: Galician Octopus in the South End, Fried Oreos on the North Shore, Rice Burgers in Chinatown, and More
Taiwanese chain TKK Fried Chicken is now open at the Super 88 (1 Brighton Ave.) alongside Kung Fu Tea (the two businesses frequently operate joint locations.) The TKK Fried Chicken menu is available for delivery, including spicy chicken sandwiches, crunchy tenders, and more, not to mention the kwa kwa bao, in which sticky rice studded with pork and shiitake mushrooms is surrounded by crispy chicken skin. This is the second Massachusetts location of TKK; the first opened in Quincy last year, only the second United States location for the chain. It has since expanded quite a bit around the country.
Also in Allston, ZZ Dessert and OneZo have opened together at 145 Brighton Ave., serving dessert and bubble tea respectively. The combo also have a location together in Quincy and a new one in Chinatown (see below.)
Flour Bakery & Cafe opened its ninth location in October, expanding to Beacon Hill (209 Cambridge St.). Joanne Chang’s popular bakery chain has locations dotted around Boston and Cambridge, serving sweet treats like the fan-favorite sticky bun as well as sandwiches, salads, and more. Online ordering is available for pickup and delivery for all locations, with Grubhub fulfilling delivery orders.
Villa Bakery Cafe has opened in Brighton (355 Washington St.), currently offering takeout only. The cafe serves acai bowls; smoothies; a variety of breads, including savory meat-stuffed options and pão de queijo (Brazilian cheese bread); corn and rice puddings; and more. There also some imported Brazilian items available to purchase, including packages of coffee.
New York’s Moon & Flower House, which expanded to Allston in 2019, has added another Boston location, replacing Boom Crispy Chicken in Chinatown (22 Kneeland St.). The menu includes a variety of fried chicken options, including cutlets stuffed with melted cheese; burgers on buns made of ramen or rice; cheese foam teas; ramen; and more. It’s currently offering takeout and delivery via most of the major third-party platforms.
Also in Chinatown, ZZ Dessert and OneZo are now open together at 83 Harrison Ave. As noted above in the Allston section, they serve dessert and bubble tea respectively.
Modern Eastern Mediterranean restaurant Servia opened downtown in mid-October (126 State St.), offering casual, takeout-friendly breakfast and lunch as well as a more upscale dinner experience. Read the full story for more details.
In other downtown Boston restaurant news, Shed’s BBQ — whose Bromfield Street location is temporarily closed — has opened Shed’s Shack inside Viga’s Pi Alley location (275 Washington St.), serving a limited menu of barbecue during weekday lunch hours. (Shed’s and Viga have the same ownership.)
And one more downtown addition: Local food truck Mo’Rockin Fusion, which serves Moroccan cuisine, has opened a stall at Boston Public Market (100 Hanover St.). The menu features create-your-own grain bowls, in which customers can choose a rice, couscous, or quinoa base; a protein such as sweet lamb, falafel, or kufta; toppings like a yogurt-based garlic sauce; and sides like hummus and mixed bean salad. Note: The truck is currently off the road due to the pandemic.
Taqueria el Barrio, a taco shop from the Bisq team, closed in September 2020 after a short tenure near Boston University. Although it had only been open since summer 2019, it was quickly gaining in popularity and impressing crowds with its house-made flour tortillas, fillings such as carne asada and vegan chorizo, and non-taco items like a torta ahogada and quesadillas. Fortunately it got a quick reprieve, reopening inside of the Time Out Market Boston food hall in Boston’s Fenway neighborhood (401 Park Dr.) in mid-October. Read more here.
Third Cliff Bakery — which has roots as a roving tricycle-based baked goods business — now has an actual storefront (3531 Washington St.). It’s been a long process, with a crowdfunding investment campaign beginning back in early 2019 and construction beginning in late 2019, only to get interrupted by the pandemic. Now open, Third Cliff Bakery is serving items like kimchi cheddar croissants, salted peanut butter cookies, Japanese milk bread, and coconut iced coffee. In a post-pandemic world, it could play host to baking classes and various community events.
Caffé Ducali is now open at 289 Causeway St. (adjacent to sibling Ducali Pizzeria & Bar), on the border of the North and West ends, serving a takeout-friendly menu of espresso drinks, pastries, breakfast sandwiches, piadini, and Roman-style pizza al taglio. There’s counter space and standing room available inside. It’s currently open daily from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Cajun Crab Shack has replaced Flaming Grill & Buffet at 950 American Legion Hwy. — and it will do the same at Flaming Grill’s other locations in Malden and Revere. The new restaurant is currently offering takeout and delivery of its Cajun-inspired seafood menu, including seafood boils. The Mardi Gras boil, for example, includes snow crab, mussels, head-off shrimp, corn, and potatoes, with a choice of sauce (such as garlic butter or lemon pepper) and spice level.
‘Tis the season for restaurants within restaurants, delivery-only pop-ups, and similar pandemic pivots. Big Night Entertainment Group — which introduced delivery pop-up Bao Chicka Wow earlier this fall (see September 28 update below) — has added a new brand, Wicked Wings, which delivers out of Scorpion Bar in the Seaport and Versus in downtown Boston. (The menu is available for onsite dining at each spot, too.)
It’s obviously all about the wings, with flavors such as ancho peach, truffle Buffalo, Dr Pepper, Froot Loops, and more. Wings come crispy, grilled, or crispy boneless, and there are a number of dipping sauces and sides available, too. Order online via the major third-party delivery platforms.
Seafood-focused tapas restaurant Atlántico — from the team behind Grand Tour and Select Oyster Bar — has opened in the South End (600 Harrison Ave.) in the high-ceilinged, airy space that previously housed Southern Proper. By day, it’s a cafe. Here’s a more detailed look at the menu and the space.
Café Beatrice has opened at the Cambridge Crossing development across from the Lechmere MBTA station (100 N. First St.); it’s the first part of a trio of new restaurants from the Puritan & Co. team, all opening in a building together at the development. The cafe features a variety of baked goods from pastry chef Brian Mercury, as well as sandwiches and more. Read more here.
In other East Cambridge news, Paco’s Mexican Grill is now open in the former Kimchi Kitchen space at 847 Cambridge St. The menu includes burritos, tortas, quesadillas, tacos, and more, and delivery is available via the major third-party platforms.
The new Artifact Cider Project taproom, the Station by Artifact Cider Project, is now open at 438 Massachusetts Ave., the former Economy Hardware space, with a variety of hard ciders on tap from Artifact’s core lineup as well as some small-batch projects. Beer collaborations with local producers are also available, as are some food options, such as toasts, meat and cheese platters, and packaged snacks like chips and crackers. The new taproom is currently open Thursday through Sunday, with online ordering enabled for can and bottle pickup.
Chef Andy Husbands’ growing group of barbecue restaurants, the Smoke Shop, has expanded to Harvard Square. It’s now open at 8 Holyoke St., which was the longtime home of Sandrine’s (and En Boca briefly after that). “We are serving the same great barbecue we always do and New England’s largest American whiskey list,” says Husbands. He notes one menu addition that’s exclusive to the new location: Nashville hot sliders, two for $8, served spicy or “hot as cluck.” The restaurant is open from noon to 9 p.m. daily, with indoor dining (limited capacity) available (there are plexiglass dividers in place.) Order takeout and delivery online. There are also locations in Boston’s Fort Point, Somerville’s Assembly Row development, and Cambridge’s Kendall Square.
The glassy standalone enclosure at 350 Kendall St. is now a taqueria, Mexcito. It’s currently offering takeout and delivery during weekday lunch hours with a menu that includes lamb barbacoa tacos, a tostada salad, street corn, horchata, and more.
Allston lost a Hainanese chicken rice shop in October, just days before Somerville gained one: Hen Chicken Rice is now open in Union Square (24 Union Sq., Somerville), focusing entirely on the Thai take on the popular Southeast Asian dish, which features poached or fried chicken with rice and accoutrements. Read more here.
The Alpine Restaurant Group — which includes Posto, Painted Burro, the Rosebud, and several other venues in Somerville and beyond — recently launched Elm Street Sweets, selling pies and other treats out of the Rosebud in Somerville’s Davis Square. It has expanded to sibling restaurant Posto Bedford (158 Great Rd., Bedford), where it is open daily from 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. for pickup. (Delivery is also available via DoorDash.)
Marblehead Vietnamese restaurant Soall Bistro has expanded to Beverly. The new restaurant, which is called Soall Viet Kitchen, is located at 211 Rantoul St. and currently offers takeout, but eventually it will add indoor seating as well as a market for items such as spices, condiments, and house-made sauces and broths. Order online, choosing from dishes such as banh mi, pho, caramelized pork chops, pork bao, and pork and prawn egg rolls.
Also new to Beverly is Rossetti, with decades-old roots around Boston. First came Bobby and Steven Rossetti’s Italian-style sausages, which they sold out of their mother’s kitchen in Revere in 1976; this led to the opening of Rossetti’s Market in 1979, followed by a sit-down restaurant in Winthrop, Cafe Rossetti, over 25 years later, and eventually a restaurant in Lynn, which Bobby and Steven opened alongside Bobby’s son Chris. The Rossettis and new partner Jason Maynard are behind the new Beverly restaurant (142 Brimbal Ave.), which serves grilled pizzas; pasta; entrees such as lamb osso buco and eggplant parmigiana; and more. Rossetti is currently serving dinner, with lunch and brunch starting later in November. Indoor and outdoor seating options are available.
Arlington’s Zhu Pan-Asian Vegan Cuisine has expanded to Brookline: Zhu Vegan Kitchen is now open at 220 Washington St., serving a wide-ranging vegan menu that touches on several Asian cuisines, from Singapore-style rice noodles with vegetables to Korean bibimbap. Online ordering is available.
It’s a familiar story during the pandemic — restaurants debuting new brands or concepts within their existing spaces, optimized for easy, affordable takeout. Island Creek Oyster Bar’s Burlington location is now operating a Mexico City-inspired taqueria called La Ventana, a collaboration among chefs Jeremy Sewall, Nicki Hobson, and Isaac Reyes. Tacos come in orders of three, served on corn tortillas, with a side of chips. Options include spicy grilled shrimp with cabbage slaw and pineapple salsa; braised beef short rib with pickled onion, ancho chile, and radish; and more. The self-described “semi-authentic” menu is available for pickup and delivery Wednesday through Sunday, with online ordering and phone ordering (413-406-8329) available.
A mini food hall called Revolution Hall is now open (3 Maguire Rd.) from the team behind a similar venue in Waltham, Craft Food Hall Project. Revolution Hall currently includes Project X, which serves pizzas and sandwiches; Sousviderie, which serves burgers, tacos, mac and cheese, and more, relying primarily on the sous vide cooking technique; and Vessel, serving grain bowls and salads. Online ordering for pickup and delivery is available for all three. There’s also indoor and outdoor seating available onsite, as well as pour-your-own wine and beer taps.
Puerto Rican pop-up PapiVivi now has a storefront in Lynn (816 Boston St.), serving a small menu of sandwiches, salads, empanadas, and a few other items. The sandwich selection is headlined by the tripleta, a trio of ground beef, shredded pork, and chicken breast pressed with chopped cheese, lettuce, tomato, crunchy potato sticks, and a sauce that combines mayo, ketchup, garlic, and cilantro. PapiVivi is a father-and-daughter endeavor, run by Sam Cortiella, aka Papi, and young daughter Vivi.
Fast-casual seafood restaurant B & B Fish opens on November 2 at 195 Pleasant St., the latest project from Boston restaurateur Jason Santos (Buttermilk & Bourbon, Citrus & Salt, Abby Lane). Buttermilk & Bourbon chef Jeff DeCandia is also involved, serving a menu that melds New England shoreline cuisine with Southern influences: Think dishes like beer-battered fish and chips; duck fat fried whole belly clams; and fried shrimp. Buttermilk & Bourbon’s fried chicken and biscuits are also both available, and lobster rolls (hot or cold) are a Sunday special. And there’s fun stuff on the dessert menu, like beignets, fried Oreos, and soft-serve ice cream.
B & B Fish offers indoor and outdoor seating, as well as takeout and delivery. The restaurant serves lunch and dinner seven days a week.
Local Mexican favorite Tenoch has expanded to Melrose, debuting on October 1 at 517 Main St. The fast-casual restaurant — which also has locations in Somerville, Medford, and Boston’s North End, as well as food trucks that are temporarily off the road — is perhaps best known for its tortas, pressed sandwiches made with telera bread.
All Tenoch locations are currently open for takeout only, with online ordering available. The new Melrose location is serving lunch and dinner daily.
Pastry chef Christina Larson has opened a storefront for Basic Batch Donuts (206 E. Main St.), which she previously operated as a pop-up at locations such as South End restaurant Bar Mezzana, where she worked. The ever-changing doughnut selection includes yeast-raised, cake, and old-fashioned styles of doughnuts with a variety of classics and seasonal specials, as well as non-doughnut items like cinnamon rolls. Tea and coffee are also available. Basic Batch Donuts is currently open for walk-in ordering, although the shop may explore pre-ordering and curbside pickup options in the future. It’s open from Wednesday through Sunday.
Roxbury West African restaurant Suya Joint has expanded to Providence in the form of a delivery- and takeout-only business with a limited menu called Abinchin Plateau, located at 65 Bath St. Order online, choosing among dishes such as spicy grilled tilapia with plantains or whole snapper.
Local barbecue connoisseurs readily drive out to Sturbridge to get some of the best barbecue around at B.T.’s Smokehouse. Now it has a sibling in Worcester, B.T.’s Fried Chicken and BBQ (318 Park Ave.), serving, well, fried chicken and barbecue. (Here’s the menu.) Takeout only for now. The original B.T.’s also serves fried chicken, but only as an occasional special. In Worcester, the new spot is open Wednesday through Sunday, and chicken is always on the menu.
September 28, 2020: Koshari in Allston, Cheese Teas on Newbury Street, Moqueca in Central Square, and More
Mediterranean food truck Zaaki — started by Samar Abdalelah, who moved from Saudi Arabia to Boston in 2013 and debuted the truck five years later — has expanded to a brick-and-mortar restaurant at 1147 Commonwealth Ave. The restaurant features several versions of the Egyptian national dish koshari, a carb-heavy combination of rice, lentils, and macaroni. Abdalelah reportedly learned about the dish back in Saudi Arabia, from the Egyptian community there.
Takeout and delivery are currently available via several platforms.
A Newbury Street tea shop has been replaced by another: Cha Feo is now open at 248 Newbury St., the former home of Égalitea Organic Cafe. (Égalitea opened in summer 2019 before temporarily closing in April 2020 and later making the closure permanent, citing the pandemic. It still exists as a company, though, selling tea and other items via its own website and Etsy.)
Cha Feo specializes in “cheezo teas,” teas and fruit-and-tea smoothies that are topped with cheese foam. There are also a variety of other fruit teas and milk teas on the menu, including brown sugar boba milk tea, a flavor that has been popularized by Taiwanese chain Tiger Sugar (which has its sights set on Boston expansion).
Cha Feo is currently offering takeout and indoor seating, as well as delivery via Uber Eats.
Excellent Chinatown Japanese restaurant Tora, which features kaisen don, has a new ramen-focused sibling, also in Chinatown: Tora Ramen (99 Harrison Ave.). Tora Ramen’s opening menu is fairly succinct, with a few different ramen options available, such as spicy miso ramen and black garlic tonkotsu ramen, as well as crab croquettes, pork gyoza, and other snacks. Open for lunch and dinner daily.
A new delivery pop-up called Bao Chicka Wow is temporarily operating out of two Big Night Entertainment Group properties — Empire in Boston’s Seaport District and, starting October 1, Mystique at Encore Boston Harbor in Everett. Bao Chicka Wow’s menu of bao is available for delivery via the major third-party platforms.
For $16 to $19, each order comes with three bao and fries, with options such as “get in my belly right bao” (crispy pork belly, radish, apple, and su-miso mustard on a sesame honey dipped bun) and “baby I’m shellfish” (lobster, yuzu mayo, cucumber, and key lime on toasted and buttered bao).
Eager rooftop diners will have to wait longer for Central Square’s forthcoming rooftop bar, Blue Owl, but its sibling restaurant at the new 907 Main hotel (907 Main St., Cambridge), the Dial, opened last week for lunch, dinner, and Sunday brunch.
Executive chef Justin Urso, an alum of L’Espalier and Catalyst, is serving a globe-trotting menu of dishes like moqueca, a Brazilian seafood stew; bucatini all’Amatriciana, an Italian pasta dish featuring guanciale; kitfo, an Ethiopian raw beef dish; laksa, a noodle soup common in several Southeast Asian countries; and more.
The Dial is currently offering indoor and outdoor dining.
The Kendall Square expansion of Somerville ice cream shop Gracie’s Ice Cream held some preview services over the weekend and will officially open this Wednesday, September 30, along with its all-day cafe and bar Earnest Drinks, at 399 Binney St., Cambridge.
Gracie’s Kendall is serving the expected menu of ice cream options — pints, flights, frappes, sundaes, etc. — in a rotating array of flavors, such as pandan, black raspberry chip, salty Oreo, and Twinkies ‘n’ jam. But the addition of Earnest Drinks adds lots more goodies: espresso and tea drinks; boozy frappes such as a pandan whiskey frappe, ube coconut frappe, and Kendall creemee; wine, beer, and cocktails; and even some non-ice cream food, such as “fancy cheese and crackers,” a Southern cheese dog, and a ham and butter sandwich. Online ordering available. Don’t forget merch, including lawn flamingos and chile crisp produced at Somerville’s Spoke Wine Bar.
September 25 was opening day for the fourth location of Italian restaurant Evviva Trattoria (5 Digital Way, Maynard), which also has locations in Marlborough, Westford, and Wrentham.
Director of operations and chef Anthony DePalma is serving dishes such as tagliatelle Bolognese, stuffed veal saltimbocca, balsamic braised short rib, and crispy lasagna chips, as well as two types of pizzas: Neapolitan-style or Montanara-style (which has a fried crust). Separate gluten-free and kids’ menus are also available.
There’s also a weekend brunch, which includes baked frittata skillets, breakfast pizzettes with the Montanara crust, bloody marys, and more.
A new Mexican restaurant, Esquite, is now open in Revere (194 Shirley Ave.) from the team behind the Revere-based Eloti food truck, which serves Mexican street corn.
Street corn is also on the menu at the restaurant, including on-the-cob (elote) and off-the-cob (esquite) versions. Tortas, quesadillas, enchiladas, and more are also available.
Gigi’s Pizza Co. is now open at 129 Waltham St., the former Cugini’s Market space, serving a large selection of pizzas, sandwiches, pastas, wings, and more. Open for lunch and dinner Monday through Saturday, with takeout and delivery available (order online.)