As the days get shorter, the scent of pumpkin spice Dunkin’ Goldfish lurks around a corner, and the T is on the verge of a huge shutdown, Bostonians should still celebrate what came of this fleeting summer, ideally with a snack or drink in hand. A flurry of new restaurants opened recently — why not check them out?
Here’s the rundown on 20 late-summer openings to know in and around Boston, from tapas in Cambridge to beef brisket-stuffed bao in Quincy to baguettes in Melrose. This story will be updated with more restaurants that opened in summer 2022.
205 Centre Street, Malden
Bab Korean Bistro, a four-year-old Brookline restaurant, expanded to Malden in July, serving classics like tteok bokki, mandu, bibimbap, soondubu jjigae, fried chicken, and more. It’s a bit more of a casual vibe — geared at takeout and delivery — than its big sibling in Brookline, but seating is available for those who want to dine in.
Bab Korean Bistro’s Malden location is currently open from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday.
1688 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge
The popular tapas chain Barcelona Wine Bar opened its third Boston-area location in August; joining older outposts in Brookline and Boston’s South End, this one is in the former Temple Bar space between Porter and Harvard squares in Cambridge. The name evokes images of Spain, but Barcelona Wine Bar’s menu expands a bit to the wider Mediterranean with its selection of small and large plates and a range of wines, sherries, gin and tonics, and more. The new location seats over 100 and features a sidewalk patio.
Barcelona Wine Bar’s Cambridge location is currently open from 4 p.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday through Wednesday and 4 p.m. to midnight Thursday through Saturday.
1 Bow Market Way, Suite 13, Bow Market, Union Square, Somerville
Bluefin arrived at Bow Market in August, a revamping of the Hooked Fish Shop space from Hooked cofounder Jason Tucker, who is also a commercial fisherman. Reserve a seat in Bow Market’s courtyard or indoor dining space and grab poke bowls, oysters, lobster rolls, and other seafood from the Bluefin storefront. Catering is also available.
Bluefin is currently open from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday, noon to 10 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday.
465 Main Street, Melrose
Nathalie and Franck Beddiar, from southern France, opened their popular Medford bakery in the early days of the pandemic, delighting the neighborhood with a variety of French baked goods — croissants, baguettes, and lots more. Colette expanded to Melrose in late July, providing those farther north of Boston with an opportunity to taste lovely pain au chocolat, kouign amann, and pain de mie. (Note: Colette is not related to the similarly named French restaurant in Cambridge or cocktail lounge downtown.)
Colette’s new Melrose location is currently open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday.
Crane River Cheese Club
138B Cambridge Street, Beacon Hill, Boston
More a store than a restaurant, but with some sandwiches and other prepared options, Crane River Cheese Club is sibling and neighbor to the Tip Tap Room. Owner Brian Poe started Crane River as a grocery delivery service earlier in the pandemic and is now selling cheeses, meats, pantry staples, and more at the Beacon Hill storefront. Poe is known for his love of lesser-served meats; true to form, Crane River offers options like ostrich filet.
Crane River Cheese Club is currently open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday.
1377 Boylston Street, Fenway, Boston
Restaurateur Tiffani Faison’s venue Fool’s Errand, which opened as a standing room-only “adult snack bar” in summer 2018, has been on hiatus for much of the pandemic, aside from some special pop-up and private events. Now it’s back in full swing, serving a new menu of snacks, cocktails, and desserts — and there are even seats inside and on a patio.
Fool’s Errand is currently open from 5 p.m. until close Wednesday through Saturday.
40 Bow Street, Union Square, Somerville
At the end of August, this beloved Nepalese, Indian, and American fusion restaurant finally reopened after months of renovation. The updated space has a full bar, which means you can now pair your palak paneer pizza and juicy momos with a spiked mango lassi and other cocktails.
Himalayan Kitchen is currently open 11 a.m. to 9:45 p.m. Tuesday, 11:30 a.m. to 9:45 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, 11:30 a.m. to 10:45 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and noon to 9:45 p.m. Sunday.
1220 Cambridge Street, Inman Square, Cambridge
Nashville hot chicken pop-up Hot Chix has been planning a permanent location since way back in the pandemic before-times, and it finally debuted in Inman Square at the end of August. The small counter-service spot expands a bit on the menu made popular by the business’s pop-ups around Greater Boston, which typically feature spicy fried chicken sandwiches, biscuits, and banana pudding. At the restaurant, diners will also find fried oyster mushrooms and fried shrimp, sides like waffle fries and potato salad, and more, and there’s a selection of beer and wine, too.
Hot Chix is currently open 4 to 9 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, 4 to 10 p.m. Friday, noon to 10 p.m. Saturday, and noon to 9 p.m. Sunday, though expanded hours are on the way.
263 Washington Street, Union Square, Somerville
It’s a small move with big vision: Union Square gem Juliet hopped right next door into a larger space that, for one thing, will better accommodate its themed “productions” — seasonal tasting menus — with a dedicated area that the team can change with the theme and incorporate multimedia components. The move will also sharpen Juliet’s focus, turning the restaurant into more of a Niçoise-style bistro, influenced by “that part of France where it’s half France, half Italy,” as co-owner Josh Lewin previously said. (The original location — while quietly influenced by Niçoise cuisine — has featured more of a wide-ranging menu over the years, drawing inspiration from a lot of places.)
Juliet is currently open 5 to 10 p.m. Wednesday through Monday, with extended hours to come.
Kin Dee Thai & Pho
182 Bedford Street, Lexington
This late July suburban arrival features — as the name suggests — a collection of Thai as well as Vietnamese dishes. The team comes from northeast Thailand, a region where the cuisine has a lot of Vietnamese influences, but aims to serve dishes from a variety of regions. On the menu: Thai soups like khao soi and boat noodles, Vietnamese noodle bowls with lemongrass grilled meats, Thai curries, and quite a bit more.
Kin Dee is currently open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday.
20–40 Holland Street, Davis Square, Somerville
This local chain of vegetarian cafes continued its rapid expansion along the Red Line on September 1, putting a sunny, rainbow-hued location in the heart of Davis Square, where you can find even more of its organic smoothies and dishes from watermelon poke to green goddess and acai bowls.
Life Alive is currently open 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.
314 Newbury Street, Back Bay, Boston
Restaurateur Michael Serpa closed his Paris-inspired bistro Grand Tour in early September and replaced it with Little Whale Oyster Bar days later, serving traditional New England seafood. His other restaurants, Select Oyster Bar and Atlántico, also have a seafood focus, with the former serving upscale, somewhat Mediterranean seafood dishes and the latter focusing on Spanish- and Portuguese-style seafood small plates. Little Whale, though, emphasizes dishes like fried clams and oysters, clam chowder, and lobster rolls, cold or warm, complemented by a drink list focused on light, crisp, seafood-friendly wines.
Little Whale Oyster Bar is currently open from 11:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 11:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday.
1 Shepard Street, Cambridge
Beloved Cambridge Italian restaurant Giulia has a new sibling — and neighbor — with the August opening of Moëca, which chef and co-owner Michael Pagliarini intends to be a neighborhood seafood restaurant with dishes inspired by Italian cuisines and beyond. Opening dishes include wild striped bass ceviche with stone fruit and a squid ink tapioca fried into a “chicharron”; oysters with rhubarb and lime granita; yellowfin tuna with shaved, air-dried beef, and more — and be sure to save room for one of pastry chef Renae Connolly’s desserts.
Moëca is currently open from 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday.
86 Cambridge Street, Burlington
Mooo — the swanky steakhouse from the same restaurant group as Mistral and Sorellina — has added a third location, taking over its former sibling L’Andana’s Burlington space in July. (The original Mooo is on Beacon Hill, and a second location opened recently in Boston’s Seaport District.) The new location features lots of private dining space and plenty of beef, from wagyu dumplings and sirloin tartare to a bone-in, dry-aged ribeye and a 24-ounce porterhouse.
Mooo’s Burlington location is currently open from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday.
412 Hancock Street, Quincy
The self-proclaimed “modern Hong Kong cafe” Rubato opened in August in the former Contempo Bakery & Cafe space. Contempo owner Joyce Chan’s son Laurence Louie — who grew up working there — is behind Rubato with his wife Rary Ratsifa. The casual restaurant serves items like savory bao with fillings such as beef brisket or Sichuan veggies; sweet bao with fillings such as fried chicken or ice cream; congee; French toast with condensed milk and cookie crumbs; and more. On the beverage side, there’s a variety of coffee and tea-based drinks, including Hong Kong-style yuenyeung, a blend of coffee and milk tea.
Rubato is currently open from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday.
115 Salem Street, North End, Boston
The North End’s restaurants are predominantly Italian, but now and then, the neighborhood gets a taste of something different (see also: the recent arrival of Cambodian sandwich shop Suasday). The newest opening is Shasa Café, a French-Congolese fusion restaurant with a focus on brunch. On the menu: mikaté (“Congolese beignets”) with Nutella or peanut butter, beef samosas, French toast, croque monsieur, and more.
Shasa Café is currently open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.
22A College Avenue, Davis Square, Somerville
“Eat more sunshine,” Shirley founder Kat Bayle previously said, referring to what she described as “that quality beyond the five tastes (sweet, bitter, etc.) ... vibrancy, freshness, joyfulness, delightfulness that some ingredients impart.” Those ingredients, she noted, tend to be grown or made locally, organically, and sustainably. Shirley started as a farm-to-table pop-up that recently wrapped up a Bow Market residency; as of August 20, it’s a permanent restaurant in the former Oat Shop space in Davis Square. Shirley features sandwiches, baked goods, and other casual fare, all made in-house.
Shirley is currently open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday.
425 Massachusetts Avenue, Central Square, Cambridge
Si Cara brought something a little new to the Greater Boston pizza scene this August: canotto-style pizza, an offshoot of Neapolitan that features an extra-puffy crust. Chef Michael Lombardi is behind the restaurant; he’s also a partner at South End Italian favorite SRV. (He’ll remain involved there, but Si Cara is his solo project.) “I like the freshness of [canotto-style pizza],” Lombardi previously said. “It’s essentially like eating a loaf of bread fresh out of the oven, with fresh toppings.” The vegetable-heavy menu is Italian-inspired, not strictly Italian, Lombardi said; that’s reflected in uncommon pizza toppings like mushrooms with kimchi as well as shrimp and zucchini with salsa verde. And while there’s a full liquor license for cocktails like the Italian Ice — shaved ice flavored with gin, limoncello, and Lillet — the beverage focus is on natural wines.
Si Cara is currently open 11 a.m. to midnight daily.
Charles River Speedway, 525 Western Avenue, Brighton, Boston
Fans of Buenas, the empanadas-and-more shop at Bow Market in Somerville, will find a lot to love at the new Buenas sibling, Super Bien, at the Speedway in Brighton — part grocery store, part wine bar, emphasizing Buenas products (the empanadas, sauces, etc.) and dishes that can be made with them. “It’s like if Goya were cool enough to open a bar,” as owner Melissa Stefanini said previously. On the wine side, look for natural selections from South America.
Super Bien is currently open from noon to 11 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and noon to 8 p.m. Sunday.
27 Temple Place, Downtown Crossing, Boston
Hitting the scene in mid-September, The Wig Shop is a playful-yet-poised new cocktail lounge next door to siblings jm Curley and Bogie’s Place. The whole shtick, from the neon “WIGS” sign out front to the retro wig ads in the menu, pays homage to Wig World, an actual wig shop that occupied this space for 40 years, but the drinks are no joke. Classics include mai tais and Remember the Maines, while newcomers pair ingredients like tequila and cuttlefish ink (Helena) or feature so much caffeine you can only order one per visit (the rum drink Rise & Grind, served in a flowery tea cup with whipped cream). Champagne, big bowls of punch, and snacks like lobster-topped pancakes round out the menu, set amid opulence in the form of blue velvet couches and gold drapes.
The Wig Shop is currently open from 5 p.m. to 2 a.m. daily.