Category Archives: Dining

Pop up restaurant opens in South End

Nu Burger has opened within the Anoush’Ella restaurant space on West Newton Street in the South End as a “virtual pop-up”. Nina and Raffi Festekjian, who own Anoush’Ella and Nu Burger, are serving burgers for lunch and dinner seven days a week, while also continuing to serve Anoush’Ella’s menu.

Sergio and I wanted to show our support by trying out the new burger pop-up so we ordered from them this past Tuesday night. The Nu Burger menu has six different burgers (one a vegetarian option) each $12.50.

Shown above are the Fenway NuBurger served with pickles, cheddar, tomato, onion, lettuce and sauce with a side of French fries and the Umami Truffle NuBurger served with pickles, pecorino, truffles, fried egg, tomato, shallot, arugula and aoli with a side of French fries. Customers can order via this link for curbside pick up, or via popular food sharing apps for home delivery.  

The burgers are large and very filling. The baked French fries are good but I still prefer more traditional “fried” fries. I’m observing dry January so I had a glass of water with my dinner, but I can’t help but feel like these would go great with a cold beer, which Anoush’Ella serves. I didn’t see this option for take out orders but assume you can add beer to your order. Overall, we really enjoyed the bugers and will order from them again. I can’t think of a legitimate burger joint in the South End which makes this a very welcome addition to the neighborhood so let me know what you think when you order from NuBurger.

Nu Burger’s permanent home is located in Fenway at the TimeOut food market, but that is currently closed due to the coronavirus pandemic. For the time being, there is a new burger option in the South End.

Portuguese Bakery in Ptown will return

Earlier this week photos of the Portuguese Bakery in Provincetown were making the rounds showing for sale signs in its windows. This set off a series of emails and comments on Facebook and conflicting stories about what was happening (so typical for Ptown). Some people were saying the owners are retiring and looking for someone to take over the business others said the Janoplis Family had no intention of selling and to quote the text from Mylan Janopolis that was shared with me, “The Provincetown Portuguese Bakery will live on…”

However, listings like the one below are what set off the chatter and made me wonder what exactly was going on. I suppose it gives townies something to discuss and gossip over during the quiet winter months.

But in response to all the chatter, the owners of the bakery took to Facebook this morning to post the following on their page, assuring customers that they are going nowhere.

The Portuguese Bakery first opened at its current location around 1900 (nobody can confirm the exact date). It remains one of the most affordable and least pretentious dining options in town and is a reminder of Provincetown’s more humble roots as a traditional Portuguese fishing village.

As Provincetown became a destination mostly for affluent gays and lesbians, small businesses have struggled to make ends meet. The Portuguese Bakery seems to have weathered all these challenges without ever losing their identity despite different families and owners over the years coming to run this successful business. If you’ve never visited Provincetown, I recommend ordering a Pasteis de Nata and coffee to go from the bakery. It’s a wonderful treat to enjoy while walking down Commercial Street or sitting on the beach in the morning.

Boston’s outdoor dining pilot program to continue in 2021

One of the few good things that resulted from the COVID-19 pandemic was the city of Boston’s outdoor dining pilot program that was intended to help restaurants faced with strict indoor dining restrictions. The move was enthusiastically supported by restaurant owners, their staff and patrons so yesterday the city of Boston announced that it would resume its outdoor-dining pilot, allowing restaurants to use street parking and sidewalk space outside their doors for tables effective April 1, 2021 (or possibly earlier depending on the weather). Below are some key dates for Boston restaurants to note.

January 18, 2021: The initial deadline for licensees to submit an application to receive a decision or follow-up questions from the city of Boston Licensing Board is due by February 19, 2020. Licensees may also submit an application after this date to participate and those applications will be reviewed on an ongoing basis.

February 19, 2021: The city of Boston Licensing Board will notify licensees of approvals or requests for more information if they submitted their application by January 18.

April 1, 2021: The 2021 Outdoor Dining Pilot will start on April 1, 2021, weather permitting. This may start earlier if the weather permits. More updates will be shared in the future.

Boston Outdoor Dining Application

According to the mayor’s office approximately 550 Boston restaurants extended their dining space outdoors (415 of them on public land). Click here for more information about 2021 Outdoor Dining Pilot Program.

Gaslight Boston announces it will close

Sunday, November 22 Gaslight Boston, the French(ish) restaurant from the Aquitaine Group, will close for good. The restaurant was perhaps best known for their ability to host large parties at their communal tables and their patio dining. I will miss their beat salad which is second to none and the friendly staff.

While the current economy had to be a factor in the decision to close, the reason cited was that their lease was ending. I feel confident that this space will not remain vacant for long. The proximity to the highway, ample parking and the patio space will make this an appealing property for someone once this pandemic is under control but until then it will certainly be sad to see this space go dark. I wish the staff well and much luck.

You can read Seth Woods note announcing the closure on the Gaslight website, here.

Ducali Caffe’s Nutella croissants are wicked awesome

Ducali Cafe opened next door to the restaurant by the same name in the North End last month. When I learned that they would be serving Nutella croissants I knew that I would have to trek across town to try these tempting treats.

The Nutella croissants are $4.00 and sold with a dusting of powdered sugar on them. I brought mine home and put it in the oven at 200 degrees for a few minutes while I brewed coffee to dip my croissant in it. How else is one expected to eat these treats?

When I took the warmed the croissant out of the oven, I could smell the buttery treat and hint of Nutella. The pastry was flaky and light and well worth the calories just in case you were wondering. If you enjoy such treats head over to the North End and tell them BosGuy sent you.

Ducali Caffe
289 Causeway Street
Boston, MA

Get 50% rebate on your restaurant bill with SeatedApp

Approximately 20% of restaurants in Massachusetts have closed permanently and The Pioneer Institute predicts that the state’s restaurant industry will lose an estimated $2.13 billion this year. In response, the dining app, Seated, is rolling out a program modeled after a successful initiative in the UK that will offer a 50% rebate on any restaurant bill Monday through Wednesday in November that can be applied to the Seated Store which includes brands like Uber, Starbucks, Adidas, Target and many more. This offer is good for only dining-in and if your reservation is made via the Seated app.

The initiative called, Eat Out to Help Out MA, is free but to participate you must download the Seated app in the App Store or Google Play Store, identify the participating restaurant, make a reservation or signal you are a walk-in, and submit a photo of your receipt within the app to claim the rebate after your meal. More than 100 restaurants in Boston and Cambridge have indicated they will be participating in this program.

For those of you who are trying to be budget conscious this is an opportunity to show your support and be able to provide a slightly more generous tip to the staff at your favorite participating restaurant.

Atlántico opens in the South End

Photography by Brian Samuels

Bucking a trend of recent restaurant closures, I’m glad to write that this past Thursday Chef Michael Serpa opened his new seafood restaurant, Atlántico, in the South End at 600 Harrison in space formerly occupied by Southern Proper.

The seafood restaurant has a really interesting menu that is mostly comprised of Spanish & Portuguese tapas that is broken down into several sections including an oyster bar (what else would you expect from the chef behind Back Bay’s Select Oyster Bar), a larger selection of cold and hot and grilled tapas, and for those who are very hungry a large paella. Prices range widely, but the dinner and drink menu is currently available online, here.

The restaurant is open for dinner 7 days a week and according to the website weekend brunch on Sunday from 11am to 2pm. Café service will be available Monday to Friday from 7am to 2pm.

Photography by Brian Samuels

I’ve yet to check out the restaurant but do plan to see if the cafe is open this week to try some of their pastries, breakfast sandwiches and coffee.

Atlántico
600 Harrison Avenue
857-233-2898 || info@atlanticoboston.com

Hours of Operation
Weekday café service 7AM – 2PM
Dinner daily starting at 5PM
Sunday brunch 11AM-3PM

Stella Restaurant to be reborn as a food truck

Stella Boston, Evan DelutyThe popular South End restaurant, that closed in May could be reborn (sort of). Boston.com reported yesterday that the owner of Stella Restaurant on Washington Street (shown above), Evan Deluty, will be setting up a truck called Stella Express in Southie at the corner of West Broadway and B Street –  near the Broadway T station.

Apparently the new food truck will offer favorites from the old Stella menu and if all goes as planned, Stella Express will debut on August 18. But what I want to know is where will be the bar?

Cinquecento in Boston’s South End closes

At the height of the coronavirus epidemic in Massachusetts The Acquitaine Group Italian restaurant, Cinquecento, which was closed due to a statewide shutdown to flatten the curve with COVID-19 infections was flooded with approximately five feet of water from a water main break on Harrison Avenue.

Since the mid-April flood there has been a lot of activity to make the building (and surrounding buildings) habitable again but earlier this week the successful Italian restaurant with the beautiful patio announced that they will not reopen. Below is a photo of  me at their Rosso Container Bar on their beautiful patio.

Ciao Cinquecento

Stella Boston closes

3 gay days in BostonStella Boston in the South End announced on its social media pages this past Friday that the restaurant would close later that night. Stella has been a fixture in the South End for 15 years.

However much I’ll miss their menu, it was the bar scene that always brought me back. The bartenders who worked there made that place fun. Some of my favorite memories include squeezing past all the out-of-town diners crushed into the tiny front bar and crowding the entrance, waiting for their table. Sergio and I would make a beeline to the much less crowded back bar where April was holding court. I also loved my Sunday afternoons with Matt pouring drinks – making Sunday truly a fun day. Adam, Alejandro, Jen, Lucia — the list of fun, engaging bartenders is long and over the years Stella attracted equally colorful regulars who added an even more interesting dynamic. Stella will be missed.

I want to wish everyone who worked at Stella (now and in the past) a big thank you for so many happy memories and tasty cocktails.

Stella Facebook post Friday, May 15, 2020:

Boston restaurant directory (now online)

This past Saturday the city of Boston created an online directory called “Support Boston Restaurants” to let patrons know which restaurants remain open, their hours of operation, menus, how to order as well as delivery and pick up instructions. The directory has more than 200 restaurants and is organized by neighborhood and also includes some Cambridge restaurants.

Supporting Boston Restaurants Directory

Where you can order take out in Boston

dining, restaurantsThis past Sunday Governor Baker announced a statewide shutdown of all bars and restaurants effective through April 6. However, takeout and delivery is still allowed and some restaurants are open. Eater Boston has done a good job of compiling area restaurants that are open for take out.

Below are the South End restaurants from the Eater Boston list  The full list of restaurants can be viewed here, Tracking delivery and takeout options in and around Boston, including special meal kits and more.

SOUTH END RESTAURANTS

Anoush’ella Kitchen: The original location of Anoush’ella is offering takeout and delivery from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily. (The Fenway and Lynnfield locations are completely closed for the time being.) Menu and other details online35 West Newton St., South End, Boston

Coda: Will be up and running on DoorDash and Caviar for delivery at some point during the week of March 16. 329 Columbus Ave., South End, Boston

The Elephant Walk: Offering takeout and delivery from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. daily. Call (617) 247-1500 to order takeout (20% discount), or get delivery via Caviar, DoorDash, Grubhub, or Postmates. 1415 Washington St., South End, Boston

Mistral: Offering curbside pickup and delivery via Caviar from 4:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. 223 Columbus Ave., South End, Boston

Oishii: Open for takeout from Tuesday through Sunday, 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Place orders via phone (617-482-8868). 1166 Washington St., South End, Boston

SRV: Will be up and running on DoorDash and Caviar for delivery at some point during the week of March 16. 569 Columbus Ave., South End, Boston

Yellow Door Taqueria: Closed until Wednesday, March 18; reopening at 4 p.m. that day (and all subsequent days) for delivery and takeout via Uber Eats. 354 Harrison Ave., South End, Boston

Get your tickets to the Taste of the South End

TOSE, AIDS Action CommitteeThis is my favorite food tasting event in Boston. Sergio and I started attending “The Taste” nearly 20 years ago when I was working at AIDS Action and it continues to be one of my favorite charity events to attend and support.

For one night in March, AIDS Action brings together 40+ South End restaurants for a delicious evening of bite-sized servings, live cooking demonstrations, silent auction, as well as wine tastings and beer sampling. Tickets have been on sales since late last year so if you’ve yet to purchase your tickets don’t delay since the event generally sells out before the night of the event.

For more information and to purchase tickets, visit tasteofthesouthend.org.

Eater Boston’s increasingly narrow view of Boston dining

Augustana BostonDespite the critical headline, I want to be clear that I like the Eater Boston blog. I often Tweet out and share their articles, but the blog, which describes itself as a “Food news and dining guides for Boston” does a terrible job of sharing news about and championing the dining scene of restaurants not in a downtown neighborhood, Cambridge or Somerville – and it appears to be getting worse.

Eater Boston maps illustrate my point

Boston’s ten largest neighborhoods by population are (in order): S. Dorchester, Roxbury, Brighton, Jamaica Plain, East Boston, Mattapan, South Boston, Hyde Park, West Roxbury and the South End. Combined these neighborhoods account for more than 60% of Boston’s total population. However, Eater Boston routinely overlook all but South Boston and the South End. What gives Eater?

Eater Boston needs to step up their game

Is Eater Boston really committed to providing food news and dining guides for Boston when the majority of residents’ neighborhoods are largely ignored? There is no doubt that the downtown neighborhoods have a more active dining scene, but it seems that communities south and west of The Fenway and South End are almost universally overlooked in practically every “map” and blog post. Watertown and Medford based restaurants are more likely to be featured than a restaurant in Dorchester and that’s just plain crazy.

I know Eater Boston can do better and want them to live up to their potential by providing all of Boston a chance to shine.  I’m asking Eater Boston to step up their game; stop fixating on the same 5-6 neighborhoods. Get to know the rest of Boston. Start to feature the dining scene in neighborhoods outside of downtown and encourage your readers to leave these downtown enclaves to visit hidden gems in places like Dorchester, Roxbury, Brighton, East Boston, Mattapan, etc.

Chef Michael Serpa to open new restaurant in South End called Atlantico

select oyster, grand tour, atlantico restaurantThe Boston Restaurant blog is reporting that a new seafood restaurant called Atlantico will open in restaurant space formerly occupied by Southern Proper in the Girard apartment building at 600 Harrison Avenue in the South End.

Michael Serpa is listed on the Boston Licensing Board notice as the manager. You may recognize Serpa who is behind the successful Select Oyster Bar and the new Grand Tour, that opened this month – both in the Back Bay. Previously, Serpa worked at the much loved seafood restaurant, Neptune Oyster Bar in the North End. At this point there are no details but more may emerge following the hearing with the city next Wednesday, February 5, 2020.