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Coming Soon in Allston and Brookline

On Brighton Ave., in the space that had been Sumi (and right next to India Dhaba), there's a banner announcing Mount Everest Kitchen - I'm assuming Nepali cuisine. In Brookline Village, in the space that had been the orginal Cafe Saint Petersburg and was then a different Russian restaurant, the windows are covered with brown paper saying "Coming Soon Tibetan Restaurant." And downstairs on Babcock Street, in the space that had been Firenze, a sign to warm the hearts of Brookline Chowhounds - another Japanese restaurant.

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  1. if every japanese restaurant that opened wasn't yet another generic sushi joint, it wouldn't be so bad. i'd love to see a real tonkatsu or okonomiyaki joint open up somewhere, or even just some places that served items beyond the standard menu that all these places seem to have.

    4 Replies
    1. re: passing thru

      Is a tonkatsu joint a place that makes that japanese schnitzel?

      1. re: tamerlanenj

        yes, exactly. they do a pretty good version at cafe mami in the porter square exchange. i think ken's ramen at the super 88 in allston might also have tonkatsu ramen, but i haven't tried that.

      2. re: passing thru

        I agree! I'd like to see a great place that serves really good tonkatsu, omurice, okonomyaki, yakitori, and/or takoyaki.

        1. re: passing thru

          According to this article (go down to the end, to the piece about a bunch of new places) it'll be run by the guy who ran Roka, which they describe as "Osaka-style." They do seem to aiming for more than just sushi, at least.

          The same article says that the manager of Orinoco was planning to open a new restaurant called Caroni in the space that had been Village Fish in Brookline Village, although the May opening date was clearly optimistic.


        2. I noticed the Tibetan sign yesterday too. Seems to be the new in area lately. Maybe the new Japanese restaurant will be a teriyaki shop, we could use one.


          1. When did Sumi close? I never got a chance to get there...

            2 Replies
            1. re: hiddenboston

              Yeah, me neither! I'm not sure exactly when they closed, but at least 6 months ago. They had been on my early short list for our Wednesday Night Dinners in Allston. We walked past them on our way to/from someplace else one night and I noticed that the furnishings were all still in place but clearly gathering dust. Too bad!

              1. re: Allstonian

                Probably becasue they never got their liquor license...How do you make a go of a place that sells drinking snacks when there aren't drinks?

            2. Firenze closed?
              Oh dear. I have such fond memories of dinners there.

              More Japanese? Really? Sigh.

              1. b.good should be open now in the former gas station near TJMaxx. They had a soft-open party a few days ago.

                8 Replies
                1. re: lergnom

                  Oh, joy. Just what Brookline needs. What is UP with b.good? Their expansion is truly frightening to behold.

                  1. re: tamerlanenj

                    Well, I ate their late yesterday afternoon. The oven-baked fries were good and crisp, almost crunchy. The hamburger was pretty good, on a multi-grain bun with a bunch of toppings. I would have liked it better if I'd chosen different toppings; the "garlicy" greens were a little bitter. Overall, not a bad place, cute inside, plays real blues music, had the garage door open, has a small parking lot. I prefer the burgers at Grille Zone but these are suitable.

                    1. re: lergnom

                      I don't know....the one burger I had at b.good was ok, but there just wasn't enough fat content to make it tasty. I'd much rather have a greasy, fatty burger at Mr. Bartley's or Zon's, even though I know it's a bit less healthy.

                      1. re: hiddenboston

                        But my son who is doing Weight Watchers is able to have burgers more often because of b.good. It's good for people to have options. He'd be happier with the decadent burgers, but really wants to lose some of the chow-fed belly. They can coexist!

                        1. re: bear

                          Does your son know that a b.good burger has more calories than a Wendy's single with everything?

                          1. re: tamerlanenj

                            He's actually pretty aware of the calorie content-points, but prefers b.good to some of the other lower-calorie stuff out there. He's pretty careful, and as I said, it's not his ideal, but it's good to have choices. I myself don't have a desire to check out their burgers. It's grease and lots of cheese for me.

                            1. re: tamerlanenj

                              This is an apples-to-oranges argument. The b. good burger is topped with mushrooms, caramelized onions, and sauteed greens, so it's not an appropriate comparison to a Wendy's Classic single. (There's also no information on the b.good website to compare the size of the two burgers.) While even the plainest of the b. good burgers does have slighlty under 10% more calories than the Wendy's Classic single, it also has 40% less fat and and over 3 times as much fiber.

                              1. re: Allstonian

                                Both are supposedly 1/4 lb before cooking.

                                I thought the greens were bitter but I'd order a burger with another topping any day.

                  2. I noticed yesterday that the pizza place at the top of Station St. by the T sign now is Sandwich something or other.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: Joanie

                      Yeah, and that pizza place, Dino's, did a pretty decent slice....Very simple, tomato-ey sauce, appropriate cheese. Not the best crust, but not Greek either...

                      1. re: galleygirl

                        I thought Dino's was awful though it was cheap. They owned the building - which is why they could stay in business - and I believe the sold it when they retired.

                        1. re: lergnom

                          When we lived in the Village and were young and poor with kids, Dino's stiffed us twice with a reheated pizza. We went to Village Pizza after that and yes it was Greek pizza but they were really nice and always cooked to order.

                    2. Any clue about what's going to go in the Zathmary's space? It's so hard to believe what's happened to coolidge corner in just the three years since I moved...

                      Harvard Fruit: GONE, now finagle a bagle
                      CinemaSmith: GONE, now a cell phone store
                      Zathmary's: GONE, now an empty storefront

                      These are three places that, aside from BookSmith and the movie theater, really MADE Coolidge Corner Coolidge Corner, and not just another neighborhood.

                      What's next? The movie theater is going to close down and become a target?

                      13 Replies
                      1. re: tamerlanenj

                        Zarthmarys----> Panera...Oh, the humanity......

                        1. re: tamerlanenj

                          There's a Panera Bread coming into the Zathmary's space.

                          While I agree that Coolidge Corner, especially that stretch of Harvard, is being mall-ized as badly as Harvard Square has, I can't say that I think that Zathmary's "MADE Coolidge Corner Coolidge Corner." They were only there for 6 years, after all, and I never had much use for them, to be honest.

                          1. re: Allstonian

                            They started great, then went quickly downhill qualitywise, and uphill pricewise....
                            Now, I do miss Bildner's....

                            1. re: tamerlanenj

                              I don't share your prejudices against chains or change in general. The Panera will have a reasonably sized outdoor seating area in front - they're pulling the facade of the building back 15 feet or so to create an open space - and that will contribute to the life of the street. That sidewalk is pretty narrow.

                              Booksmith owns its building and is well-capitalized. The Theatre is owned by a foundation - originally funded by major landlord Harold Brown - so it isn't going anywhere.

                              Change happens. Where Pier 1 is now used to be a bowling alley. Paper-Source was a hardware store.

                              1. re: lergnom

                                That is good news about the sidewalk cafe. But, in general, I just find Panera to be a crappy establishment.

                                1. re: tamerlanenj

                                  Totally agree. I don't think their "bread' tastes like bread....the only healthy protein they offer in their meals is chicken. No good veggie options. No, a green salad is NOT a veggie option.

                              2. re: tamerlanenj

                                I went into Zathmary's once and bought a dessert and it was stale. In my mind, at that point they were GONE.

                                At least Cool Corn doesn't have McDonald's to kick around anymore.

                                1. re: koebie

                                  I don't eat much at McD's but that place was a gathering spot for senior cititzens and working class people . . . so every place has its good points. The seniors gathered with coffee and sat for a long time and that place was a big loss to them.

                                  I'm not a fan of Panera but a lot of people like it. I know, for example, that they do bake their own stuff but I generally don't like their bread. Their coffee has been terrible. They've promised improvement but I don't know if they've done it.

                                  1. re: lergnom

                                    Oddly enough, the Panera is Everett is a similar gathering type place for seniors and working class union guys. I know McDonald's has the senior priced coffee though.

                                  2. re: koebie

                                    Zathmary's made fabulous blueberry muffins (Jordan Marsh style) and since they closed we have not found anything close to those muffins in the Brookline area. And they opened early on Sunday morning (but that's another topic)

                                    1. re: ginnyhw

                                      They used the Jordan Marsh recipe. I've not seen decent muffins around here otherwise.