Another restaurant and bar looks like it will be opening in the South End’s Ink Block. You may recall back in November I wrote about Bar Mezzana which is an Italian restaurant that is aiming for a spring 2016 opening in the 360 Harrison Ave building. This new restaurant – rumored to be called Scofflaw – will be in the 300 Harrison Avenue building.
The new space is hoping to acquire the Lower Mills Tavern liquor license. A hearing for the request was scheduled for Wednesday, January 6th. You can read more about the new restaurant from, Boston Restaurant Talk.
Last year I had a good time pulling together my blog post: BosGuy’s 5 restaurant trends for 2015, and I think my predictions for the most part turned out to be true. I also think that those five trends will continue into 2016 but in addition to those trends I think we can expect to see more of the following in 2016.
My friend Zoe showing off Uni’s late night ramen menu
More ethnic cuisine restaurants will open. One of Boston’s trendsetting chefs, Ken Oringer, made big news just a few months ago when he announced he would be closing his flagship restaurant, Clio, a high end French restaurant that has been serving the public for nearly 20 years. In its place he will expand Uni – his high end sushi bar. There will always be plenty of French, Italian and American style dining establishments, but I predict you will see more restaurant openings, offering different cuisines in Boston in 2016.
Life Food & Wine blogger and yours truly sampling wine
Michelle Wu and Stephen Murphy’s BYOB proposal for Boston will take off as part of a compromise to reform Boston’s antiquated and unfair liquor licensing process for restaurants. The BYOB proposal will have its greatest impact in transitioning neighborhoods where paying the $250,000+ for a liquor license makes opening a new restaurant impossible.
Restaurants will want in on Boston’s many street festivals
More brick-n-mortar restaurants will role out Food Trucks in Boston as a way to bring their food to the consumer. I bet at least one local restaurant chain (e.g. Legal Seafood or Whalburger) will take the plunge this year as a way to finally get a foot in the door at the many spring, summer and fall festivals in Boston.
Share your 2016 Boston restaurant trends in the comments section
Prior to leaving for Brazil I exchanged emails on Facebook with the new Greek restaurant, Kava, opening in the South End, which I first wrote about in early November, New Greek restaurant Kava to open in the South End.
In November I mentioned the restaurant was targeting an early 2016 opening and in the email I exchanged earlier this month they confirmed that they are committed to a late January opening but a lot can happen in four weeks so I plan to touch base after I return to see if there were any setbacks over the holidays.
One of my readers, Dean, emailed me shortly after my first post to let me know that the owners behind Kava are the same as Trattoria Newbury in the Back Bay and the chef at that restaurant, will move to Kava when they open. However, I’ve not been able to confirm this. I’ll try to circle back after the holidays. In the meantime, anyone with information about Kava can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
After a brief second attempt Merrill & Co. has closed (again), leaving the space probably best known as the home of 28 Degrees empty. But this space in the South End will not remain vacant for long, according to the blog, Boston Restaurant Talk, Boston Nightlife Ventures (BNV) will open a new restaurant there named Akinto.
BNV is better known for their bars than cuisine in my opinion so it will be interesting to see if they can create a successful restaurant in the South End. Akinto is currently the Southeast Asian-influenced pop-up operating within BNV’s restaurant and bar, Wink & Nod, located next door so you can check out the food to get a glimpse of what may come when it opens. According to the post, Akinto is hoping for an early summer 2016 opening.
Las Ventas, a Spanish deli located at 700 Harrison Avenue, and Stella Cafe, a breakfast and luncheon cafe located next to Stella Restaurant & Bar at 1525 Washington Street have both closed. Las Ventas closed earlier this month and according to their website the space will be remodeled for private dining and function space for Estragon. Stella Cafe closed last week but there has been no word on what will become of the space.
The Ethiopian restaurant, Addis Red Sea, has been operating in the South End since 1988 but Eater Boston says that restaurant is now up for sale. According to the article published last week, the restaurant is being sold “as shown,” with 68 seats and an existing beer and wine license.
The combination of their fantastic location and their existing beer and wine license will no doubt result in the owners getting a lot of money but my immediate question(s) are when will they close? For how long will the space be vacant? And who will replace the affordable and unique dining establishment?
Earlier today Boston’s much celebrated chef, Ken Oringer, and his team announced that his signature restaurant, Clio, which first opened 19 years ago in the Eliot Hotel in the Back Bay will close on New Year’s Eve. Make your reservations today before the restaurant closes permanently in approximately seven weeks.
“Clio has seen so much success and I feel beyond blessed to have been able to grow and evolve alongside my flagship,” said Oringer.
According to the release issued, the restaurant will “reemerge as a new Japanese concept where Oringer and Chef Tony Messina from Uni will continue to showcase the best of today’s innovative dining culture,” in 2016 – although no date has been provided as yet.