Jamaica Plain is getting a new neighborhood Italian restaurant later this summer: Tonino will open in the former Little Dipper space (669A Centre Street, Boston), the Tonino team announced today. Prior to Little Dipper, which was a space-themed diner, the address was home to a different restaurant with neighborhood Italian vibes, Tres Gatos sibling Centre Street Cafe, so Tonino should be right at home in the cozy space. It helps that Tonino co-owner Luke Fetbroth is already familiar with the storefront: The former Tres Gatos chef de cuisine also consulted on Little Dipper.
Fetbroth and Claire Makley, Jamaica Plain residents, are behind the forthcoming restaurant, where they’ll be serving pastas made in-house, as well as Sicilian-style pizza and an “eclectic, food-centric beverage program,” per today’s announcement from the local industry vets. This is their first project together, but they’ve both been involved in the restaurant scene locally and beyond for years. Makley — a longtime alum of Hojoko and a couple of its New York siblings — most recently helped open Boston’s first dedicated sake bar, the Koji Club, in Brighton. In addition to Tres Gatos, Fetbroth is an alum of other popular local spots like Sarma and Giulia. Going back farther, he started working with pizza at 15 years old at Stone Hearth Pizza.
Makley and Fetbroth are positioning Tonino as “a neighborhood restaurant first and an Italian restaurant second,” per their nascent website. “Carbs are our love language,” they write. “Vegetables are our friends. Just like the farmers who grow them. Give us any reason to celebrate and we’ll make it a party.”
Watch for updates on social media leading up to a hopeful late summer opening.