Tag Archives: Dining

Which restaurant will open first in the South End in 2018

south end diningIt is hard to say which restaurant will be the first to open in Boston’s South End in 2018 but it is interesting that two contenders are restaurants that focus on cuisine south of the Mason-Dixon line, Southern Proper and Bootleg Special. 

While Boston has an Italian or French restaurant on what seems like every corner, the city has relatively few restaurants that seek inspiration from the South and even fewer that do it well.South End diningChef Jason Cheek will be opening his restaurant, Southern Proper, at 600 Harrison Avenue in  The Girard relatively soon, considering the space has signs saying “Opening Winter 2018”. The new space will include more than 1,500 square feet of dining, bar space and patio seating.

If Cheek’s name rings a bell it might be because he has a distinguished career working at several excellent restaurants including The Maiden, Sam’s at Louis,  Coppa and Toro to name just a few.

south end restaurant, Stephen ChanA restaurant that looking to open even before Southern Proper is the traditional style Louisiana seafood boil, called Bootleg Special, owned by the former Castle Square resident, Stephen Chan. The restaurant’s menu will include items like crawfish poutine, po’boys and beignets.

Southern Proper hopes to get a live music license, which I hope they can get – this city needs more places that offer live music – not fewer and their location on the corner of Tremont and Herald Street means there are very few residents who could / should be impacted.

It is interesting to note that both of these restaurants constitute new space for the South End, adding to the dizzying number of new restaurants that have opened in this tiny downtown neighborhood.

In the case of Southern Proper, it is going into a new mixed-use residential space that previously was a parking lot in SoWa and in the case of Bootleg Special, to my knowledge the space was never a restaurant; previously it had been a dog daycare center.

La Motta’s in South End is closing and will be replaced by Burro Bar

The Aquitaine Restaurant GroupApproximately two years after opening their doors, The Aquitaine Group’s restaurant, La Motta, on Washington Street in the South End says it will close. Marc Hurwitz writes in the blog Hidden Boston, that a Mexican eatery in Brookline called the Burro Bar will take over the space.  I took a quick look at their menu and if the prices remain the same, this looks like it could be an affordable dining option with most plates ranging from $12-$16.

The Burro Bar in Brookline’s Washington Square is under the same ownership as the Painted Burro. Joe Cassinelli, who founded the Alpine Restaurant Group, also runs Posto and Rosebud in Davis Square and Osteria Posto in Waltham.

Although I hate to see restaurants close, I was never able to appreciate La Motta’s and after several disappointing tries I stopped going. I’m unfamiliar with the new owners and don’t have any details when La Motta’s will finally close and the Burro Bar will open in its place but stay tuned.

New restaurant, Lobstah on a Roll, coming to South End

Lobstah on a Roll, South End restaurantEater Boston first broke the news that a new restaurant called Lobstah on a Roll will open in the South End in the space formerly occupied by Emma’s Pizza on Columbus Avenue. The restaurant has been planning to open in Arlington so the expansion to two locations comes as a bit of a surprise and it is unclear which location may open their doors first.

According to a previous article on Hidden Boston, the Arlington location  will serve breakfast sandwiches on weekdays, “crazy breakfasts” on weekend mornings, and lunch/dinner options such as soups, chowders, burgers, steak dishes, lobster rolls, and baked stuffed lobsters. It is unclear if the South End location will have a similar menu. The address for the upcoming location of Lobstah on a Roll in the South End is 537 Columbus Avenue, Boston, MA, 02118.

Stay tuned for more to come on this.

Time Out Market Boston to open in Fenway

Last year when Sergio and I were visiting Lisbon, we stumbled upon a beautiful food hall called (appropriately enough) Time Out Lisbon. It turns out that the Lisbon Market is the original Time Out (opening in 2014) but at the time we’d never heard of this international food hall that now operates in more than 100 cities and nearly 40 countries.

Earlier this month The Boston Globe wrote that Time Out Market Boston will open in the Landmark Center building in the Fenway in 2019 and will feature 16 culinary offerings, outdoor patios, two bars, a cooking academy, and a retail shop. The market will operate in a newly revitalized Fenway / Kenmore neighborhood which in recent years has seen a lot of residential development.  More news about the vendors that will participate and the opening for Boston’s TimeOut Market is sure to come in 2018.

Below are a couple of photos that I snapped when visiting Time Out Market Lisbon in September 2016.


Time Out Market Lisbon


Time Out Market Lisbon

BosGuy cooks: Caramelized shallots

BosGuy cooksWhen served as a side to an otherwise healthy dinner this can be the difference between an okay meal and something really delicious. The recipe comes from Ina Garten and while I never seem to be able to follow recipes, this one is really easy. The total prep time is ~5 minutes and the cooking time is ~25 to 35 minutes.

This is one of those dishes that everyone likes. The recipe below is for two people so double this (or more) if you are cooking for a dinner party. I can guarantee you every last shallot will be devoured. When it is cooked, the smell is mouth watering and you can cut them with your fork.

BosGuy cooks


  • 1 pound of whole, peeled shallots
  • 3 tablespoon of butter
  • 1+ tablespoonsof sugar
  • 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar
  • pinch of kosher salt
  • pinch of fresh ground black pepper
  • flat leaf parsley, finely chopped (as much or little as you like)


Cooking tip: save yourself time and buy shallots that have already been pealed.
– Preheat the oven to 400 degrees
– Melt the butter in a medium pan over medium heat then add the shallots and sugar. Be sure to coat the shallots with the butter and sugar and stir them until they start to brown (5-10 minutes).
– Add the vinegar, salt and pepper and mix thoroughly then put the pan (uncovered) in the oven until tender and caramelized; about 20-30 minutes.
– Sprinkle with parsley and serve warm.

Cleaning tip: The most difficult thing about making this is cleaning the pan after. I suggest that after you cook the shallots and plate them, add some water to the pan with a little dish soap and leave it on low heat on your stove. Just remember to use your oven mitts when you grab the pan to clean it!

Restaurant review: Cafe Heaven (Provincetown)

Provincetown, Ptown

Painting of Cafe Heaven by Paul Schulenburg

Restaurants come and go but Cafe Heaven, conveniently situated on Commercial Street in Provincetown is a favorite that has stood the test of time. However, after one of the owners tragically died this spring I didn’t know quite what to expect when we visited. I’ll admit I was sad to walk in and not be immediately greeted by Alan, but the restaurant in every other way is as good as ever thanks to Patrick who runs the kitchen and the dedicated staff.

Cafe Heaven is probably best known for their breakfast, which is consistently excellent. The menu includes eggs benedict, omelettes, granola, yogurt etc. along with a few French Toast and pancake options always served fresh maple syrup.

Raspberry Pecan Pancake stack $13

On this visit two specials caught our eyes, the first was a  stack of raspberry and pecan pancakes and the “scramble special” which changes regularly but on this day consisted of tomato and bacon, served with breakfast potatoes and toast.

The stack of pancakes were served warm and the maple syrup was soaked up by the large, fruit and nut filled pancake. By contrast, the scramble special of the day was much more savory. Both were excellent and I would most definitely recommend should you see them on the menu when you visit. However, over the years I’ve learned that everything on their breakfast menu is delicious and worth the calories so check out Cafe Heaven on your next visit to Provincetown.

Scramble of the Day: Tomatoes and Bacon $14.95

Cafe Heaven is open daily (in season) from 8AM – 2PM for breakfast and lunch and from 6PM-10PM for dinner.

BosGuy Rating: 5 out of 5 stars, Wicked Awesome.

Cafe Heaven
199 Commercial Street in Allston
(508) 487-9639

In loving memory of Alan Cullinane who Sergio and I miss.

BosGuy makes baked salmon with dijon dill sauce

bosguy cooks

Baked Salmon with a cucumber & tomato salad, served with mustard dill sauce and rice

It has been too long since I last shared a recipe so in lieu of sharing another restaurant review I wanted to share a slightly modified recipe I picked up from epicurious.com, that was really excellent.

Sergio does not care for salmon and earlier this month he was away so I used the opportunity to make baked salmon with a mustard dill sauce. I served it alongside a cucumber and tomato salad and brown rice. The recipe has two steps; first making the mustard dill sauce followed by baking the salmon. Despite the two step approach, this healthy dinner was easy to make.  The recipe shared below will serve 3-4 people.

Step 1: Making the mustard dill sauce:BosGuy cooks

To make the sauce you will need approximately one half of a small to medium sized vidalia onion, 8 ounces of sour cream, 2 tablespoons of dijon mustard and 2 tablespoons of fresh dill finely chopped.

The first step is to mince approximately half of a medium sized vidalia onion and add it into a mixing bowl with the remaining ingredients: 8 ounces of sour cream, 2 tablespoons of dijon mustard and 2 tablespoons of chopped fresh dill along with salt and ground pepper to taste. Whisk the entire mixture and let it sit on the counter for 45 minutes – 1 hour. The point is to let the ingredients combine and ensure it is applied to the salmon at room temperature.

Full disclosure: I added slightly more mustard and dill, but if you taste as you mix the sauce you can ensure it is precisely to your liking.

Step 2: Baking the salmon:BosGuy cooks

First preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and once the oven is ready place your salmon (1 lb – 1.25 lbs filet) skin side down on a lightly oiled baking sheet. Add salt and pepper and one minced garlic clove (the garlic is optional but I can’t imagine cooking without using garlic) to the top of the salmon filet.

Take approximately 1/3 of a cup of the sauce and liberally cover the entire filet. I also covered the sides of the salmon. Place the salmon in the oven for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, check to see if the filet is cooked to your liking. I turned off my oven, slightly opened its door and let the salmon sit for another two minutes before I took it out to plate it.BosGuy cooks

While I was making the sauce, I also was cooking brown rice, but since there are different cooking times depending on the rice you use, follow those directions to ensure you have a well cooked grain to accompany the salmon.

While the salmon was in the oven, I peeled and sliced a cucumber and chopped a tomato. I used the extra mustard dill sauce to add to both the salad and the the salmon after I plated it. I will definitely make this again when Sergio is out of town. Although he may not care for salmon, this is one of the best meals I have cooked in a long time. The fact that it is was so easy to make, clean up and fairly healthy is an added bonus.bosguy cooks

1 – 1.25 lbs salmon
8 ounces of sour cream
2 tablespoons of mustard (I used dijon)
2 tablespoons of fresh dill
1/2 medium sized vidalia onion
1 garlic clove
1 tomato
1/2 of a cucumber
salt and pepper for seasoning