Over the past year, Boston’s new crop of cocktail bars have been pulling off elaborate, one-night-only escapes to other times and places. There’s the witchy subterranean world of Hecate, the jet-setting atmosphere of Birds of Paradise, and the literal wig shop that the Wig Shop took over in Downtown Crossing. The latest transportative cocktail bar to throw its hat in the ring is Borrachito, a taqueria and bar which just opened in the Seaport’s Superette, at 70 Pier 4 Boulevard.
Borrachito is a New York City transplant: The bar and taqueria combo, run by New York-based restaurateurs the Garret Group, first launched in the East Village during the pandemic. The Seaport location, however, is much larger than its New York counterpart. Walk in the front door of the taqueria and there’s a wide, curving order window set up for customers to grab a variety of tacos, including a jerk chicken rendition, which the group’s food and beverage director Max Stampa-Brown says is a nod to Boston as a transportation hub and a home to many immigrant communities. “There are a ton of different influences here [in Boston] that made us want to bring a ton of different influences,” Stampa-Brown says.
Then, slip through the walk-in freezer door at the right of the pick-up counter and enter a cocktail bar in a hidden, secondary space, where customers can order micheladas, horchata espresso martinis, and tequila- and mezcal-based drinks on a “kinda like a margarita” menu. The bar design is like a gas station on Route 66 meets nostalgic Americana luncheonette meets Baja California. “It’s kind of like this time machine door where it opens up and you’re walking through this transformative space,” according to Stampa-Brown.
Gavin Moseley, the co-founder of the Garret Group, is a Boston native. He’s been angling for years to return to the city as a restaurateur, but simply getting a Boston liquor license costs more than opening whole bars in New York City, he says. They started talking to Seaport real estate firm WS Development in 2019, and the company invested in the restaurant group as part of the deal to bring them to the area.
“It was clear that they wanted more than just a traditional landlord-tenant relationship where you pay rent on the first of the month and don’t speak,” Moseley says. For someone attempting to successfully navigate Boston’s costly, byzantine liquor license regulations, the partnership was attractive. Four years later, Borrachito in the Seaport was born.
The taqueria and cocktail bar is the first full-service restaurant to open at the Superette, a slick new shopping center that includes places like workout gear shop Alo and fancy fragrance spot Le Labo. Other food businesses like fellow incoming NYC spot Mia’s Brooklyn Bakery and Cambridge udon sensation Yume Ga Arukura are slated to follow soon.
Borrachito Taqueria and Spirits is open seven days per week. The taqueria is open from 11 a.m. to 1:30 a.m. daily, and the cocktail bar is open from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. on weeknights and 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. on weekends.