During summer 2018, it looked like the Boston area was poised to be overrun with food halls — which, by most definitions, is a fancy way of saying “food court.” Typical opening delays were compounded by the pandemic, and a number of these giant projects that were set to open in 2019 or 2020 have yet to open their doors. One of them, though, has begun opening on a rolling basis as of July 2021: The Speedway in Brighton. (The Speedway is not calling itself a food hall, and by strict definitions perhaps it is not, but it’s sort of a food hall in the way that Somerville’s Bow Market is a food hall — a collection of unrelated food and beverage vendors operating within the same venue, sharing communal seating and other amenities.)
Located at 525 Western Ave. on the site of the former Charles River Speedway Headquarters administration buildings — with said buildings rehabilitated and renovated, with some historic elements preserved — the Speedway is a collaboration between the Architectural Heritage Foundation and the Massachusetts Department of Conservation & Recreation’s Historic Curatorship Program. Centered around an 8,000-square-foot courtyard, the Speedway will eventually be home to a variety of local food and retail vendors, as well as event and office space.
Anchor tenant Notch Brewing opened in July 2021, with other openings expected throughout the summer and fall. Bookmark this page for updates on the Speedway and its tenants as the summer goes on; relevant stories will be added to the bottom of this page.
First, a quick cheat sheet on what has opened and what’s on the way:
- Notch Brewing: The Salem-based brewery expanded to the Speedway in July, opening a sizable taproom and beer garden.
- Hummus v’Hummus: A “hummuseria” from chef Avi Shemtov, who is behind the Chubby Chickpea food truck and Sharon restaurants Simcha and A La Esh.
- The Koji Club: A sake bar from sake expert and O Ya alum Alyssa Mikiko DiPasquale, who first operated the Koji Club as a virtual sake bar, complete with Zoom tastings, during the pandemic.
- Super Bien: A South American wine bar and grocery store, featuring Buenas products (and dishes made with Buenas products).
- Tipping Cow: A new location for the Somerville-based ice cream shop, which is completely free of peanuts, tree nuts, and sesame.
- A speakeasy-style cocktail bar in a basement?: This one’s not leased yet, but Speedway general manager Markos Doyle is reportedly hopeful; leasing information is here.
And check out the full stories below for all the details.