As is Eater’s annual tradition, we’re closing out 2021 by surveying local food writers (including our own staff and contributors) on various restaurant-related topics, and we’re publishing their responses in these final days of the year. (Check the Year in Eater archive page for previous and subsequent posts in this series.)
Readers, please feel free to chime in with your own thoughts by joining our Facebook group.
“My list of new places to try and old faves to revisit is now 100+ deep. In a year of sorrows for restaurants that didn’t make it, I’m psyched for any place that isn’t a national chain outlet or helmed by World-Famous Absentee Chef Douchey McInstagram. But here are a few priorities anyway. Thanks to Eater Boston, I’m hungry for the new Cicada. I say hooray for Suasday, bringing Cambodian sandwiches to the overly homogeneous North End. Dear Annie has the formidable genes of Rebel Rebel and Field & Vine, and I’m thrilled to find another natural wine bar. I’m pulling for indie startup Judy’s Bay and love its notion of Eastern and Western seafood on one menu. Moeca should fill a big gap: never enough seats at sibling/neighbor Giulia. And in case you wonder whether I can ever keep up with that list, I’m still eight years late to the party at the China in Quincy, whose concept Boston desperately needs more of: a sports bar with traditional Chinese food.”
MC encourages readers to consider donating to Haley House, Community Servings, the Greater Boston Food Bank, Restaurant Worker Mutual Aid of Greater Boston, and community fridge programs in your neighborhood.
“I love the trend of neighborhood grocery/bars meeting our moment: Eastie’s brand-new EBO & Co. Grocery counts, though you can’t have a drink there (unless they’ve popped a bottle for samples). Somerville’s Vinal General and Brighton’s Super Bien are both coming in 2022, with bar snacks, beverages by the glass, and shelves to shop for provisions from small and local makers to bring home to make something for dinner. Every neighborhood (especially mine :)) could use a place equipped with a liquor license and such good taste.”
Jackie encourages readers to consider donating to World Central Kitchen and your favorite local public radio station.
“Well, I’m hoping that the restaurant replacing the Red Hat in Beacon Hill will be much like the old Red Hat and I have a feeling it will be, so I’m excited about that. On a related note, I can’t wait for the Pour House in the Back Bay to return, and that won’t be changing at all, which is good news for so many of us. Also, I don’t know when it will return, but the Wenham Tea House is a special place, so when it does reopen, I’ll be there for sure.”
Nathan Tavares, freelance writer:
“I’m excited for Nomai, Brian Moy’s new spot opening in the Derby Street Shops, in Hingham soon. And (same answer as last year) all the goodies in High Street Place once it opens in March.”
Nathan encourages readers to consider donating to your local community fridges.
“If I can be broad, I look forward to what will replace all of the empty restaurant and bar spaces that now dot the local landscape — provided that they will be local, independent operators that can help restore much of the dynamism and originality that has been lost over the pandemic. About that: Let’s issue more liquor licenses!”
Eric encourages readers to consider donating to the Greg Hill Foundation.
“Lots of exciting spots coming up in the new year! I’m particularly enthusiastic about La Royal, the Celeste sequel in Cambridge’s Huron Village; several projects with connections to current or former Dakzen folks; and everything at High Street Place and the Speedway. I also can’t wait to see what Comfort Kitchen does with their own space, considering how great their pop-ups have been this year. And I don’t know if it’ll end up being in 2022 or later, but I am ecstatic that Sally’s Apizza will be a much, much shorter drive from Boston. Even if it doesn’t quite live up to the original location, it’ll be an incredible addition to the Boston-area pizza scene.
And a few very recent openings that I haven’t checked out yet but am eagerly trying to fit into my schedule: Bar Volpe, Dear Annie, and Wusong Road (which is partially open now but will debut more fully in the new year).”