The trees are still mostly covered in leaves and some days it still feels like late summer outside, but fall is indeed here, and there are a lot of restaurants opening this season. (Here’s a sneak preview of what’s to come.)
This roundup is being updated weekly throughout fall 2021, full of details on the newest restaurants that have opened in and around Boston. (Looking for last season’s openings? Here’s the rundown on summer 2021.)
The roundup was most recently updated on October 25, 2021, including notes on Pho Express in Allston; Café Sauvage and Clover Food Lab in Back Bay; Tatte in South Boston; Banh Mi Hem in Braintree; Tashan in Bedford; Regina Pizzeria in Beverly; and Plant City X in Warwick, Rhode Island.
Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; the latest data about the delta variant indicates that it may pose a low-to-moderate risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial transmission. The latest CDC guidance is here; find a COVID-19 vaccination site here.
Boston’s first mochi doughnut shop, Pon de Joy (1 Brighton Ave., Boston), opened in early October within the Super 88 food court. The sibling to Allston’s Kimchipapi Kitchen is serving up chewy doughnuts in flavors like matcha, strawberry milk, chai latte, black sesame, and more. The exact flavor lineup changes by the day; watch for updates on Instagram. And shortly after Pon de Joy opened, its sibling and neighbor did as well — Kimchipapi Korndogs, featuring the corn dogs made popular by Kimchipapi Kitchen. [Read more.]
Also now open at the Super 88: Pho Express (1 Brighton Ave., Boston), promising “fresh broth every day.” Serving lunch and dinner daily, Pho Express offers pho — obviously — but also lemongrass short ribs or pork over rice, spring rolls, banh mi, and soft drinks. Order takeout online.
Turns out it’s the season for mochi doughnuts in Allston, because following right on the heels of the Pon de Joy opening is Mochinut (154 Harvard Ave., Boston), open inside Gong Cha as of October 14. It’s selling Korean rice flour hot dogs — wrapped in coatings like crispy ramen or Flamin’ Hot Cheetos — in addition to mochi doughnuts. It’s part of a chain with locations around the United States, Thailand, and South Korea; this is the first New England location.
In other Allston news, Bos’ Sichuan Taste (204 Harvard Ave., Boston) has replaced longstanding Chinese destination Shanghai Gate, although the chef is reportedly the same. Delivery for the new restaurant is available via Chowbus; the menu posted there includes dishes such as crispy pork intestines; Sichuan tea-smoked duck; Sichuan spicy rice noodles; dry roasted whole fish; chile and cumin dried lamb; and quite a lot more.
Beer-filled national chain restaurant Yard House (110 Huntington Ave., 2nd floor, Boston) has expanded to Boston’s Back Bay, opening within the Marriott Copley Place. It’s the second Boston location (there’s one in Fenway) and the fifth in Massachusetts. In addition to a lengthy beer list, Yard House serves comfort food like onion ring towers, sweet and spicy tempura shrimp, burgers, pizza, steak, and more. Online ordering for takeout is available.
Also in Back Bay, Café Sauvage (25 Massachusetts Ave., Boston) opened on October 20 in the former Hsin Hsin Cafe space. From wife-and-husband duo Anaïs and Antoine Lambert — alums of several local French restaurants and both originally from France — the all-day cafe is meant to show diners that “there is more to Parisian food than just beef bourguignon and escargots,” as Anaïs Lambert previously told Eater. Café Sauvage showcases the multicultural culinary influences on Parisian cuisine, with inspiration from Vietnam, Portugal, Ethiopia, and beyond on the menu, as well as some French bistro classics. (To start, Café Sauvage is offering a pared-down menu and doesn’t yet have a liquor license or take reservations; watch Instagram for pertinent updates.) [Read more.]
And in other Back Bay news, local vegetarian fast-food chain Clover Food Lab (800 Boylston St., Boston) expanded to the Prudential Center on October 22, Clover’s 14th location. (Find it in the Hynes Court, across from the convention center.) The new location will host a “pay what you want” grand opening event on October 29 and 30, with proceeds going to the Massachusetts Rivers Alliance. This is the chain’s first location in a shopping mall, and it features a fully retractable storefront so passersby can easily see inside.
Fast-casual charcuterie shop Kured (401 Park Dr., Boston) added a second storefront at Fenway’s Time Out Market Boston on September 27, serving custom charcuterie boxes and cones. The original location opened on Beacon Hill a few months back. [Read more.]
Also new to the Fenway neighborhood, Nagomi Izakaya (636 Beacon St., Boston) opened this fall. The Japanese restaurant is serving a large selection of sushi, kaisen don, and poke bowls, as well as snacks like grilled shishito peppers, pork gyoza, chicken karaage, and agedashi tofu. There’s an extensive lunch menu with combos featuring ramen, donburi, and more. Online ordering is available.
Longwood Medical Area
The D.C.-founded fast-casual salad chain Sweetgreen (360 Longwood Ave., Boston) has added a 20th location to its collection of Boston-area outposts, debuting in the Longwood Medical Area on October 12. The new location can fit about 30 diners inside and 20 outside.
Norwood-based Castle Island Brewing (10 Old Colony Ave., Boston) expanded to South Boston on September 23 — an appropriate location, given that its name refers to South Boston’s Castle Island. The new brewery and taproom serves Castle Island’s core beer lineup, such as American pale ale Candlepin, plus special releases, collaborations, and more. There’s also South Shore-style bar pizza from Bardo’s Bar Pizza, sibling to Randolph event space Lombardo’s; the pizza’s dough includes Castle Island beer. [Read more.]
In other South Boston news, ever-growing local cafe and bakery chain Tatte (60 Old Colony Ave., Boston), which now has about two dozen locations, including several in the Washington, D.C., area, opened its big new location in South Boston on October 20, a location founder Tzurit Or described as “a bakery wonderland” when she announced it over two years ago. Within the Cole Hersee development alongside Castle Island Brewing (see above), this new Tatte also includes production, class, and office space. It’s open daily from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., with direct online ordering available for takeout and delivery available via the major third-party platforms. Tatte’s explosive expansion hasn’t all been smooth sailing: In June 2020, current and former employees released a petition making allegations of racist behavior by management, including Or, who responded by committing to diversifying Tatte’s executive board and donating funds and leftover food and beverages to Black Lives Matter-affiliated shelters and protestors, among other promises. Tatte continues to expand later this week: A Newton Centre location opens on October 27.
New West End food hall Hub Hall opened last month, minus a couple of its vendors. As of October 15, Momosan (80 Causeway St., Boston) is open there, too, the only table-service restaurant at the food hall. It’s the first Boston venue from Iron Chef’s Masaharu Morimoto. Several varieties of ramen are front and center on the menu, including the sesame-spiked tan-tan ramen pictured above, but there are also lots of other items, including small plates like soft shell bao and pan-fried pork gyoza and larger plates like a roasted half Peking duck. [Read more.]
Tea party catering business the Vintage Tea and Cake Company (129 Belmont St., Belmont) has been bringing tea service to events of all kinds for the past decade, featuring vintage china, traditional scones, and other treats. In 2018, owner Adel Donegan began the process of adding a sit-down tea room to her commercial kitchen space; as these things go, the pandemic delayed the plans. But as of fall 2021, the Vintage Tea and Cake Company can now welcome customers into the space for afternoon tea. Current hours are Thursday through Sunday at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.; book online. The current service, which is $30/person for an hour and a half seating, includes finger sandwiches, pastries, scones, tea, and more.
PlantPub (675 W. Kendall St., Cambridge) opened on September 24, bringing fast-casual pub fare and drinks — fully vegan — to Kendall Square. The team behind it includes Pat McAuley, who cofounded Quincy’s former vegan beer hall pop-up Rewild; chef Mary Dumont (Cultivar, Harvest); and investor Sebastiano Cossia Castiglioni, who focuses on vegan businesses. On the menu: Buffalo cauliflower wings; a kimchi burger that can be made with an Impossible patty or a house-made veggie patty; pizza; oat milk-based soft serve; craft beers and wines; and an interesting selection of nonalcoholic drinks, like a chamomile hopped tea, several booze-free IPAs, and CBD-infused seltzer, not to mention the most hilarious brand of canned water. PlantPub offers a bit of seating inside and out; diners can also order takeout online. [Read more.]
In Harvard Square, Sally’s Sandwiches (Smith Campus Center, 1350 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge) opened at Harvard University on October 12; it’s the second location for the sandwich shop from the Blackbird Doughnuts team, and Blackbird also operates at the Smith Center. (The first Sally’s Sandwiches opened as part of the original Blackbird Doughnuts space in Boston’s South End in summer 2019.) Now students and the general public can grab fried chicken tacos, black bean burgers, Cuban sandwiches, a cashew-based vegan mac and cheese, and other sandwich and sandwich-adjacent items alongside everything bagel doughnuts, pumpkin spice latte bismarcks, and soft serve ice cream. Online ordering is available.
Also in Harvard Square in early October, “neo-trattoria” Bar Enza (1 Bennett St.) is easing itself open at the Charles Hotel, where it has taken over the former Benedetto and Rialto space. Belmont native Mark Ladner — acclaimed for his work as executive chef of Del Posto in New York — is at the helm, collaborating with Boston’s Lyons Group (Sonsie, Scampo, Rochambeau, and more). To start, the restaurant is focusing heavily on bar snacks, but watch for an extended menu with pasta and more in the coming weeks.
And in other new-Italian-restaurant-in-Cambridge news, East Cambridge is now home to Geppetto (100 N. 1st. St., Cambridge), the final piece of the new trio of Cambridge Crossing businesses from the Puritan & Co. team. Geppetto joins its siblings the Lexington and Cafe Beatrice at the East Cambridge development, located near the Lechmere MBTA station. The restaurant highlights pastas made in-house under the watch of Boston restaurant industry veteran Tony Susi (Olives, Sage, Capo), who is serving as Geppetto’s “pasta consigliere.” There’s also an amaro cart. Geppetto is open for dine-in service only.
Meanwhile in Central Square, the Mimi’s Chūka Diner pop-up (438 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge) has put down roots until at least spring 2022, operating out of the Artifact Cider Project’s Cambridge taproom. From a couple of B&G Oysters alums, Mimi’s is inspired by chūka ryori cuisine — Chinese dishes made in a Japanese style. The pop-up, which has been making frequent appearances in and around Boston throughout the pandemic, is known in particular for its gyoza, but it has also been known to serve noodle dishes and more. The opening menu at Artifact includes mapo donburi, among other dishes. [Read more.]
Open as of early October, Liberty & Main (500 Legacy Pl., Dedham) is serving American bistro fare at the Legacy Place shopping center, which also has a number of other restaurants, including Genki Ya, Il Massimo, and Legal C Bar. Liberty & Main owner Michael Feighery is the former CEO and president of the group behind the Smith & Wollensky steakhouse chain. Feighery, executive chef Doug Brown, and the team — which also includes Feighery’s wife and daughters — are serving dishes like lobster escargot, a DIY tuna tartare, blackened cod tacos, and Statler chicken breast. On the drink list, there’s an exclusive lager created in partnership with Castle Island Brewery, headquartered nearby in Norwood. (The brewery also recently expanded to South Boston; see above.) Patio seating is available in addition to indoor dining, and there’s lunch and dinner daily, with brunch service beginning on October 24.
After David Chang’s fried chicken chain Fuku (114 Spring St., Everett) made its return to Boston in “ghost kitchen” form on September 21, it added an Everett outpost a few days later so that those in the Everett area can get fried chicken sandwiches, tenders, and more via the major delivery platforms. [Read more.]
The Boston area’s tiny Egyptian food scene got a little bigger in October with the opening of Kushari and Grill (321 Boston Ave.) near Tufts. Mohamed Hassanein — who runs the restaurant with his wife, Irina — comes from Alexandria, Egypt, and previously ran a food truck in Boston called Mr. Kushari, which operated from March 2020 to March 2021. Kushari and Grill serves Egypt’s national dish, koshari, a vegan mix of lentils, pasta, rice, and more, typically topped with a tomato- and vinegar-based hot sauce. There’s also hawawshi, which Hassanein previously described to Eater as “like a calzone” — pizza dough stuffed with a spiced ground beef mixture. Everything is made from scratch, and everything is halal. [Read more.]
New Jersey-based açai bowl and smoothie chain Playa Bowls (532 Adams St., Milton) expanded to Milton on October 10; it’s the fourth Boston-area outpost, with others near Harvard, Northeastern, and Boston College. The Milton location is open all day, every day.
The team behind Thai restaurant Coconut Newton opened a Japanese restaurant next door, Coco Ramen (757 Beacon St., Newton Centre), on September 22. As of September 28, the restaurant is still offering its “soft opening” menu, which features several ramen options made with a creamy chicken paitan ramen base. There are also a few snacks, such as fried oysters and pork cha shu buns, as well as desserts and non-alcoholic beverages. In addition to indoor seating, there’s takeout and delivery available; order online.
In other Newton news, the team behind Boston and Somerville sandwich shop Mike & Patty’s and Somerville roast beef and pizza shop Hot Box opened Flourhouse Bakery (140R Adams St., Newton) in Nonantum Village on September 23. The new bakery is producing the English muffins and breads in use at Mike & Patty’s, as well as some other baked goods — such as lemon curd cruffins and everything bagel dinner rolls — for consumers as well as wholesale accounts. While delivery, pop-up menus, and a full retail space are in the works, customers can currently preorder online for pickup at the shop. [Read more.]
A farm-to-table pop-up called Shirley (1 Bow Market Way, Somerville) is settling in for a long-term residency at Bow Market in Somerville’s Union Square as of October 16. Founder Kat Bayle is passionate about naturally leavened breads, local and seasonal sourcing of ingredients, and all things fermentation, so Shirley serves a very local, from-scratch menu of items like cinnamon toast with a seasonal fruit jam topping; veggie soup with grilled cheese; and soda made from seasonal ingredients. Here’s a look at the menu (current as of October 18). [Read more.]
Burgundian (55 Park St.), a global street food pop-up and truck, has opened a cafe in Attleboro, serving items like liège waffles, Peruvian salchipapas, Korean jackfruit sandwiches, Sicilian arancini, and more. As of October 12, hours are limited and only takeout is available; stay tuned for updates. Online ordering is available.
Indian restaurant and bar Tashan (213 Burlington Rd., Bedford) debuted on October 19, serving dishes such as pomegranate paneer pakora; bhuna gosht, marinated lamb with roasted bell peppers, onion-garlic masala, and cilantro; and chuninda bhagare baigan, baby eggplant with peanut-sesame curry and copra paste. The latter is one of numerous vegetarian options on the menu. The cocktail list highlights some of the common flavors of Indian food; for example, there’s a paloma made with tamarind soda and a vodka-based drink with mango chutney, lime, and chile powder. Owner Vishal Sood, a Bentley grad, has owned and operated his family’s fast-casual local chain and caterer, Gourmet India, since 2014; Tashan is the family’s first sit-down restaurant. Reserve a table online.
Boston’s most well-known pizza chain has expanded again: Regina Pizzeria (800 Cummings Center, Suite 147-R, Beverly) opened on October 20, serving the decades-old pizzeria’s classic brick-oven pizza.
There’s a new Vietnamese restaurant in South Braintree Square: Banh Mi Hem (904 Washington St.), serving nine varieties of banh mi, such as grilled pork, meatballs, or fried tofu. In addition to banh mi, there are egg rolls and spring rolls, caramel flan for dessert, and a few beverages, such as brown sugar boba tea, Vietnamese coffee, and smoothies in flavors such as avocado or red bean. Order online for takeout or delivery.
Brazilian steakhouse chain Fogo de Chão (75 Middlesex Tpke., Burlington) expanded to the Burlington Mall on October 12; it’s the second Massachusetts location for the international chain, which opened an outpost in Boston’s Back Bay in 2012. The new Burlington location centers its dining room around a churrasco grill, and there’s a lot of patio space (including fire pits). Takeout, delivery, and catering are available, and diners can reserve a table online.
As of October 7, the North Shore has its fourth location of Flip the Bird (198 Endicott St., Danvers); another one is slated to open in Salem later this year. The local restaurants feature fried chicken sandwiches in a variety of styles, served on a potato roll, grilled biscuit, or bed of chopped iceberg lettuce. There are also ribs, frappes, and more, and on weekends, customers can get chicken and waffles.
Sahel Restaurant & Lounge (135 Central St., Lowell) opened on September 23 in downtown Lowell, serving Afro-Caribbean cuisine (“with a touch of French and Cameroonian influence”) from a duo of owners from Cameroon, where their families owned restaurants. Emile Christian Kamadeu and Peter Tamajong are serving dishes like suya beef, oxtail stew, a Cameroonian nut stew called ndole, and more. The sizable restaurant fits 200 hundred in the dining room, and there’s also a large lounge. The restaurant reportedly works with a Merrimack Valley organization, UTEC, to hire at-risk youth.
G Pub (101 Carver Rd., Plymouth) is an enormous venue (its capacity is around 600); it opened in mid-October and features gastropub food, a ton of televisions, an arcade, a cidery, and more. On the menu: short rib poutine, lobster mac and cheese, chicken parm “pizza,” fried fish sandwiches, grilled rack of lamb, and such. It’s from the same team as G Pub in Providence, Rhode Island, as well as several other Rhode Island and Massachusetts venues.
Medford’s popular Neighborhood Kitchen, which draws inspiration from Haitian as well as Asian cuisines, now has a sibling out in Randolph: Gourmet Kitchen (1179 N. Main St., Randolph), which opened on September 22. The menu includes an oxtail sandwich with Caribbean flavors; jerk lamb lollipops with djon djon rice and plantains; honey pineapple wings; fried red snapper; and more. The casual space has some seating inside, and takeout is also available, as is delivery on all the major platforms.
Salem arcade bar and restaurant Bit Bar (278 Derby St., Salem) opened in its new space on Derby Street on September 22, a move from its old space in a former jail on St. Peter Street. Food service requires a table reservation through the end of October, with indoor and outdoor seating available; reserve online. Here’s a look at the current game selection, and here’s the food menu, with options like “loaded Tetris tots,” an elk burger, Buffalo mac and cheese, and more. Accompanied minors are allowed before 8 p.m., but Bit Bar is 21+ from 8 p.m. on.
In other Salem news, Ginger Cajun (118 Washington St., Salem) is now open, serving Cajun seafood and Asian fusion; it’s open daily for lunch and dinner, and there’s a full bar. Diners can choose among various seafood bags (king crab legs, whole shrimp, crawfish, clams, etc.) with different heat levels and seasonings; they come with potatoes and corn, along with other optional sides. There are also dishes like lobster mac and cheese, sesame chicken, ramen, raw oysters, and more. The restaurant is reportedly connected to Gourmet Garden, a local chain of modern Asian restaurants, as well as Chi Modern Asian Cuisine in Swampscott.
The southeastern suburb has a new Brazilian steakhouse: Feijó Steak House (713 Washington St., Stoughton) is open as of October, serving gaucho-style barbecue with a salad bar, as well as fruit juices and açai bowls.
Warwick, Rhode Island
Quite a bit outside of Boston — not even in the state — but of note to local vegans, vegan food hall Plant City has just expanded to Warwick, opening its second Plant City X (70 Centerville Rd., Warwick, RI) offshoot with a focus on drive-through fast food on October 25. The first Plant City X is in Middletown, Rhode Island. Providence’s Plant City opened in summer 2019 from chef and restaurateur Matthew Kenney, who also operates a vegan pizzeria and wine bar, Double Zero, in Boston and elsewhere. (In fact, he has numerous restaurants throughout the country — and the world. Originally, he’s from coastal Maine.) Plant City X focuses on burgers, salad bowls, “chik” sandwiches (made with fried tofu patties), shakes, and more.
Plearn Park Eatery (383 Main St., Woburn) is now open in the former Cilantro Thai & Vietnamese space, primarily serving Thai food. The opening menu includes appetizers like larb gai and papaya salad; noodle soups like tom yum; stir-fried noodle dishes; various Thai curries; and more.