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Changes at Banq pending

MC Slim JB Sep 8, 2009 07:20 AM

From a friend of a friend: Banq will go on a brief hiatus to slightly reconfigure the bar and dining room (moving the bar from the front to the side) and redo the menu. New chef in, taking the fusion concept in a more Northeast Asian direction.

The one part of that very cool design I never liked was the cramped bar area, so that sounds like a good idea. I imagine the old menu was not drawing a lot of repeat business back in: that's a decent-sized dining room to fill, and I don't think Banq made the short list of South End places that were staying busy on weeknights despite the recession.


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  1. m
    mats77 RE: MC Slim JB Sep 8, 2009 07:38 AM

    When will they be closing? How long will do they think the renovations will take?

    1. MC Slim JB RE: MC Slim JB Sep 8, 2009 07:43 AM

      It's happening sometime this month, for a couple of weeks, I believe.


      1. StriperGuy RE: MC Slim JB Sep 8, 2009 08:09 AM

        I never really like the whole design of the place. Felt like I was in the belly of the whale.

        1 Reply
        1. re: StriperGuy
          MC Slim JB RE: StriperGuy Sep 8, 2009 09:48 AM

          The interior design is not changing; they're just reconfiguring the floor a bit. (I still think it's one of the cooler-looking rooms in town, though it gets a bit loud.)


        2. MC Slim JB RE: MC Slim JB Sep 8, 2009 02:41 PM

          A couple of additional details tweeted by Devra First at the Globe: Banq will be renamed Ginger Park; the new exec chef is Patricia Yeo.

          Yeo is probably best known for helming NYC restaurant AZ, but also Pazo, Sapa (all since clsoed) and a short-lived stint at the revived Monkey Bar. Historically, her food is pretty intricately plated, creative, and very fusion-y. AZ was a critical darling; her subsequent restaurants have been increasingly less well-received. This sort of looks like a fresh start in the provinces.


          6 Replies
          1. re: MC Slim JB
            StriperGuy RE: MC Slim JB Sep 8, 2009 06:21 PM

            "A fresh start in the provinces" well said.

            1. re: MC Slim JB
              hsquare2southend RE: MC Slim JB Sep 17, 2009 06:45 PM

              Just got a FB tweet: 3 more nights left as Banq; grand opening of Ginger Park next week (day not specified).

              1. re: hsquare2southend
                joebloe RE: hsquare2southend Sep 17, 2009 11:49 PM

                Why is it they never let me order appetizers from their bar menu in the dining room? Is this normal practice for the restaurant industry? I still order the the main dish but their main dining room appetizer selections is just aweful.

                1. re: joebloe
                  MC Slim JB RE: joebloe Sep 18, 2009 04:25 AM

                  Many restaurants do this. Annoying, but not uncommon.


                2. re: hsquare2southend
                  Small Plates RE: hsquare2southend Sep 18, 2009 02:15 PM

                  Chris Haynes publicizing friends and family night this Sunday and Monday.

                  1. re: hsquare2southend
                    MC Slim JB RE: hsquare2southend Sep 18, 2009 03:11 PM

                    Via Twitter, official opening of Ginger Park set for Friday Sept 25.


                3. j
                  joebloe RE: MC Slim JB Sep 17, 2009 11:54 PM

                  What's northeast asian? Korea and Japan?

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: joebloe
                    MC Slim JB RE: joebloe Sep 18, 2009 04:31 AM

                    In restaurant terms, I use Northeast Asia as shorthand for China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Japan, Korea, and I suppose Mongolia, as distinct from Southeast Asia: Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, The Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore, and Indonesia.

                    South Asia is something else again, generally referring to India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, and Sri Lanka.


                  2. CocoDan RE: MC Slim JB Sep 18, 2009 05:57 AM

                    So, with a new chef, new layout and new name, they basically realized Banq failed with the old chef, old layout and old name, which no one cuold figure out if it was pronounced with a soft "a", or long "a". To be honest the food and service never impressed me, but I did find the interior rather interesting. Same sectioned plywood technique was used in a financial services office, in the Kendall Sq. area of Cambridge (same architect).

                    5 Replies
                    1. re: CocoDan
                      StriperGuy RE: CocoDan Sep 18, 2009 07:21 AM

                      That sectioned plywood is getting overdone. That architecture firm must be getting some buzz. There is also a stylish hip hop sneaker store in Cambridge with the same treatment.

                      Honestly, I did not like it at Banq. Makes me feel claustrophobic, that I have been swallowed by a whale.

                      1. re: StriperGuy
                        MC Slim JB RE: StriperGuy Sep 18, 2009 08:33 AM

                        Banq won "best new restaurant in the world" award from Paper Magazine recently, a pretty big feather in the cap of a design firm.

                        I had better luck with the service (except at brunch, which was appalling), but I had the same consistency problems with the food: a great meal followed by an uninspiring one. That's tough to take.


                        1. re: StriperGuy
                          tdaaa RE: StriperGuy Sep 18, 2009 10:25 AM

                          Funny, I really liked the room but found the food unimpressive.

                          1. re: StriperGuy
                            yumyum RE: StriperGuy Sep 18, 2009 10:48 AM

                            I liked it, but I don't mind feeling like I've been swallowed by a whale.

                            I don't get the contention (not yours) that people were confused about the pronunciation of the stupid name. SRSLY?

                          2. re: CocoDan
                            Karl S RE: CocoDan Sep 18, 2009 08:17 AM

                            The food was never dependable, and the service was dependably slack.

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