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February 2012 Openings and Closings

hiddenboston Feb 1, 2012 06:12 AM

So another month begins, and with it, a number of openings and closings, I bet (last month saw a ton of changes, by the way). Any new spots on the horizon? Any closings coming up? I know that Moksa in Cambridge may be opening this month, and First Printer in Harvard Square is finally opening.

  1. m
    MtVernon Feb 27, 2012 11:25 AM

    Applebee's in South Bay Plaza is closed. The Applebee's sign was removed but the Neighborhood bar and grill sign was left on the building. anyone know what could be opening there?

    3 Replies
    1. re: MtVernon
      MtVernon Feb 27, 2012 03:21 PM

      Also saw Three Clover Pizza closed in South Boston.

      1. re: MtVernon
        Guinness02122 Feb 29, 2012 07:25 AM

        Won't miss either one.

      2. re: MtVernon
        ScotchandSirloin Feb 28, 2012 07:30 AM

        Can't remember the name, some kind of neighborhood bar and grill.

      3. m
        mkfisher Feb 27, 2012 05:44 AM

        Definitely not a February opening, but work has started on West Bridge in the One Kendall complex. Today was the first time I've seen construction guys in there. They're saying it should open in the Spring at some point.

        1. m
          marcreichman Feb 26, 2012 04:31 PM

          Noticed a taqueria about to open in Medford square while driving by yesterday. Didn't catch its name unfortunately. Across-ish from Ebusiya.

          This is all I can find that is relevant:

          3 Replies
          1. re: marcreichman
            hiddenboston Feb 26, 2012 05:22 PM

            That may be Tenoch. Is it on Riverside?

            1. re: hiddenboston
              marcreichman Feb 27, 2012 03:28 PM

              Sounds right, though I thought it was high st.

              1. re: marcreichman
                hiddenboston Feb 28, 2012 06:07 AM

                Tenoch is opening on Thursday, by the way.

          2. f
            Fort Point Feb 26, 2012 11:43 AM

            Moko Japanese Cuisine on East Broadway in South Boston has opened.

            1. j
              Jenny Ondioline Feb 24, 2012 05:28 PM

              Walking around the corner of Harvard and Farrington in Allston on my way to pick up a Zipcar, I saw a sign in the window of the spot that used to be Seoul Bakery: "Coming soon: Kaju Tofu House." So yet another Korean restaurant in a neighborhood that does not want for Korean, but this one apparently specializes in Korean-style tofu soups, which nobody else around here does, so I'm intrigued.

              1. s
                senji000 Feb 24, 2012 01:32 PM

                Moko is now open on E. Broadway in Southie, in the old Terrie's Place space. They serve sushi and hot Japanese and Korean entrees, and seem to be aiming toward a more high-end feel, relative to the other Southie sushi joints, although nothing on the menu was over $20. I ate there last week and did enjoy several of their relatively creative maki rolls. The kalbi was also fairly tasty, and served with a small assortment of traditional kimchee accompaniments. They were also planning on starting delivery service very soon.

                1. hiddenboston Feb 24, 2012 07:32 AM

                  Abbondanza in Norwood was dark when I drove by it recently, and now their website is down (and an emailer told me it looks like it's for sale). Can anyone confirm that it has definitely closed?

                  1. justbeingpolite Feb 24, 2012 06:40 AM

                    Probablly won't open till March, and off the chowbeaten path, but Garlic Bistro at the Drum Hill rotary in Chelmsford has finally died. It was have decent Thai with a pleasant staff, but always mostly empty. Anyway, there's a Coming Soon sign there. Pho Dalat. I don't know if its a move for the Vietnamese place on Middlesex St or Chelmsford St. More likely a third location. It's reasonably good, but not as good as Pho 88 right down the street, so......we'll see.

                    1. Chris VR Feb 24, 2012 06:05 AM

                      Wakefield Patch is reporting that Eddie's Restaurant and Mexican Grill has opened at 25 Broadway St., which is right near the intersection of North and Main. The article says it's a ":a family-friendly spot that features both Mexican and American breakfast and lunch food. You'll find American breakfast staples such as french toast, scrambled eggs and pancakes as well as lunch items like burgers and fries, and Mexican food options like burritos, tacos, nachos and fajitas." The owner is hoping to expand to dinner and catering.


                      1. MC Slim JB Feb 23, 2012 06:13 AM

                        According to a report in Grub Street Boston, Kingfish Hall is not closing, insists Todd English's PR people; its reduced operating hours (they've been closing at 9pm lately) at Faneuil Hall merely reflect "an adjustment to the slow season".


                        1. Chris VR Feb 21, 2012 09:14 PM

                          Peacuddy's in Melrose (formerly Sweet Tooth Bakery) closed for good.

                          1. galangatron Feb 21, 2012 08:33 PM

                            aline's coffee shop has opened in the old jules ice cream location on salem street in malden. a sidewalk side advertises caldos (soups), pao frances (french bread), and pao de queijo (cheese bread)

                            1. Matt H Feb 21, 2012 02:46 PM

                              As per their Facebook page, Floating Rock will have its last service tonight. Shame what this place turned into.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: Matt H
                                emannths Feb 21, 2012 02:52 PM

                                Wow, DoubleMan was prescient: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/831382

                              2. c
                                Chocomom Feb 20, 2012 07:12 AM

                                Got in my email that Sabra in Newton will be closing their restaurant at the end of the month after 35 years and it will reopened as an Irish pub.

                                1. p
                                  Parsnipity Feb 18, 2012 01:30 PM

                                  Possible I missed it, but does anyone know what the deal is with Zing's Pizza in Porter being "on vacation" for like 4 months now? Their website says they're available for catering orders of 10 or more pies, which doesn't really make sense. I really hope they reopen and they always seemed to do good business.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: Parsnipity
                                    rknrll Feb 18, 2012 01:45 PM


                                  2. m
                                    mkfisher Feb 17, 2012 09:53 AM

                                    Slate Bar & Grill is finally open on High Street. There was a solid crowd in there for lunch. There was a really long bar with some TV's. Looks to have a JA Stats / Battery Park kind of feel to it. I wouldn't have high hopes for the quality of the food.

                                    4 Replies
                                    1. re: mkfisher
                                      hiddenboston Feb 17, 2012 11:39 AM

                                      Really? Their website says "Opening in March." :-D

                                      1. re: hiddenboston
                                        mkfisher Feb 17, 2012 11:43 AM

                                        They were open for sure. Lots of people going in and out. Definitely didn't seem like an invite only/soft open lunch.

                                        1. re: mkfisher
                                          hiddenboston Feb 17, 2012 11:49 AM

                                          I just called. Their official opening date is this coming Monday, but they are indeed open for business now, as you mentioned. They need to fix their web page!

                                          1. re: hiddenboston
                                            southie_chick Feb 18, 2012 07:02 AM

                                            I stopped in on Friday to find out what was up with the website & they said they would be updating it over the weekend with a menu. Friday was a "soft" opening, with Monday as their official opening. They weren't serving the full menu Friday - only a couple of things (flatbreads / sandwiches / burgers) that they had listed on a piece of paper. Didn't have the time to stop there for lunch, but one of my co-workers wants to try it out this week - will let ya know if I go how it is.

                                    2. MC Slim JB Feb 17, 2012 06:22 AM

                                      Herald reports that Kingfish Hall closed Wednesday night "for renovations", but an English rep insists it will reopen today. I've heard all kinds of bad things about this place, like that it owes six months of back rent, and worse. Wasn't it facing an eviction hearing at some point recently? I'll be curious to see if it does reopen.


                                      11 Replies
                                      1. re: MC Slim JB
                                        hiddenboston Feb 17, 2012 07:08 AM

                                        OpenTable shows Kingfish as being "offline temporarily." I would think that if it were reopening today, it would be back online. I guess we'll just have to wait and see...

                                        1. re: hiddenboston
                                          hiddenboston Feb 17, 2012 11:34 AM

                                          From Devra First of the Globe (via Twitter): "According to @ChefToddEnglish Kingfish Hall closed for a night for repairs but is now open and will stay open."

                                          1. re: hiddenboston
                                            MC Slim JB Feb 17, 2012 01:34 PM

                                            I'd more than half-expect English's PR people to lie in this situation. And English doesn't exactly have a track record of going out gracefully when one of his projects fails. I wouldn't be surprised at tales of giant arrears in rent, vendors left holding the bag, employee paychecks bouncing, etc. (Not that this is specific to The Todd -- it's often ugly when any restaurant goes bust.)

                                            According to the Twitter feed of Michael Cooney, who manages the bar at Sorriso (and perhaps has some insider skinny), "Kingfish is done -- new Olives crew starts their training in that location next week while finishing touches are done in Charlestown."


                                            1. re: MC Slim JB
                                              hotoynoodle Feb 17, 2012 08:41 PM

                                              another issue for the "new" olives is reaching settlements with all of the vendors who were left empty-handed, especially liquor and wine companies. some have agreed to accept pennies on the dollar kinda deals, others have blacklisted the account entirely and refuse to do any more business with them.

                                              than again, tony ambrose managed to keep ambrosia, then its successor (name escapes), going on strictly c.o.d for many years.

                                              1. re: hotoynoodle
                                                MC Slim JB Feb 17, 2012 08:49 PM

                                                That was Blackfin, which was both ugly and terrible.


                                                1. re: MC Slim JB
                                                  hotoynoodle Feb 18, 2012 09:44 AM

                                                  ah! yes, yes and yes.

                                                  1. re: MC Slim JB
                                                    opinionatedchef Feb 19, 2012 12:01 AM

                                                    what ever happened to Ambrose?

                                                    1. re: opinionatedchef
                                                      hotoynoodle Feb 19, 2012 06:17 AM

                                                      last i heard he had a catering company.

                                                      1. re: hotoynoodle
                                                        MC Slim JB Feb 20, 2012 09:26 AM

                                                        Yep, it's called Ambrosia Events and Catering. Ambrose pops up here and there as a guest chef at events run by his buddies who still have restaurants, like at a recent Monday night at Stella. I imagine he'd have trouble getting funding for another brick and mortar venture in Boston.


                                                        1. re: MC Slim JB
                                                          hotoynoodle Feb 20, 2012 10:27 AM

                                                          his father-in-law was most of his bankroll previously. nobody is a bottomless well.

                                          2. re: MC Slim JB
                                            hotoynoodle Feb 17, 2012 12:46 PM

                                            they were "6 months" behind in rent over a year ago. to my knowledge they have never caught up/paid in the meantime. with quincy market reorganizing through a bankruptcy it wasn't a priority.

                                          3. l
                                            lergnom Feb 16, 2012 07:49 PM

                                            Two changes coming in Coolidge Corner, Brookline.

                                            1. Hops & Scotch is apparently the name of the replacement for Finale on Beacon. One of the owners is an owner of Coolidge Wine & Spirits, the liquor store next door. The idea is beer downstairs and scotch upstairs. No idea about the food.

                                            2. Otto's Pizza - chain from Portland with carryout location in Harvard Sq. - takes over the closed Friendly's space at Harvard and Green St. In case the name flummoxes you, they serve pizza.

                                            Both should be open around May.

                                            7 Replies
                                            1. re: lergnom
                                              Jenny Ondioline Feb 16, 2012 10:08 PM

                                              The Coolidge Corner Upper Crust was skating on thin ice even before the recent labor scandal -- having Otto's just across the street may well kill it dead.

                                              1. re: Jenny Ondioline
                                                Unfoodie Feb 17, 2012 05:49 PM

                                                The labor scandals are nothing new for Upper Crust. They've been in and out of court for years because of them.

                                              2. re: lergnom
                                                total13 Feb 17, 2012 04:00 AM

                                                And the Best Cellars space on the corner of Beacon and Harvard will now be...a bank! Yawn. At least the other two openings are something interesting.

                                                New coffee shop in Brigham Circle, Green T in the spot formerly known as "Stylz by Da Barba". Looks cute, open very early.

                                                1. re: lergnom
                                                  Berheenia Feb 18, 2012 07:07 AM

                                                  Portland ME or OR?

                                                  1. re: Berheenia
                                                    hckybg Feb 18, 2012 08:08 AM

                                                    Portland, Maine. www.ottoportland.com

                                                  2. re: lergnom
                                                    opinionatedchef Feb 18, 2012 11:57 PM

                                                    oh boy ,Otto's! i hope they have seats here.

                                                    1. re: opinionatedchef
                                                      CookieLee Feb 20, 2012 09:09 AM

                                                      I read in the Brookline Tab it will be similar to the Maine location. 60 seats. Here's the article:

                                                  3. j
                                                    Jenny Ondioline Feb 16, 2012 09:21 AM

                                                    Not February, but Hidden Restaurants is reporting that KO, the meat pie purveyor in Southie, is going to open a sit-down spot in the space that used to be Scup's.

                                                    I know I'm in the minority here, but I absolutely hated Scup's: mediocre-at-best food in a stupid, ugly room. But hey, a takeaway order of meat pies, chips and lamingtons to eat in that cute little park down the street? Yes, please!

                                                    2 Replies
                                                    1. re: Jenny Ondioline
                                                      MC Slim JB Feb 16, 2012 10:42 AM

                                                      Don't forget the sausage rolls. Vegemite on toast optional.


                                                      1. re: MC Slim JB
                                                        Jenny Ondioline Feb 16, 2012 12:24 PM

                                                        Ooh, I don't think I knew about the sausage rolls. Yes, some of those as well.

                                                    2. CocoDan Feb 16, 2012 08:15 AM

                                                      Blue Pointe Bistro in Weymouth Landing is shuttered/gone/bye, bye/so long.

                                                      2 Replies
                                                      1. re: CocoDan
                                                        beb31 Feb 16, 2012 09:17 AM

                                                        That's sad - the food was really good when it first opened, but something seemed amiss the last time I was there. I found this on an Association website representing the Weymouth Landing neighborhood: Blue Pointe Bistro located at 61 Washington Street / Weymouth, MA. 02188, closed on Monday 12 December 2011. Todd and his wife sold the restaurant to Weymouth people who also own 2 other restaurants. The new owners will renovate the place and plan to re-open the end of January / early February. We Thank Todd and his wife for 5 wonderful years and wish them both the very best in future endeavors.

                                                        Trying to think of the "Weymouth people" that would fit the bill...

                                                        1. re: beb31
                                                          SeaSide Tomato Feb 17, 2012 01:29 PM

                                                          5 years, Jeepers--I will think of Blue Pointe bistro as that newish place in weymouth I keep meaning to try. Ah well. Tempus Fugit.

                                                      2. Allstonian Feb 13, 2012 10:05 AM

                                                        The windows of Bubble Berry, in Union Square, Allston, were papered over this morning. The sign posted said "closed for renovation," which is usually a bad sign, especially for a place that hasn't even been open 6 months.

                                                        7 Replies
                                                        1. re: Allstonian
                                                          drewames03 Feb 13, 2012 02:43 PM

                                                          Not a February opening, but I just spoke to the owners of Coolidge Corner Wine & Spirits and he confirmed that he will be opening a restaurant/bar in the former Finale spot called Hops & Scotch. The downstairs will feature about 30 craft beers on tap and the upstairs will be more of a lounge with a focus on Scotch, rye, and bourbon. He is hoping for a late spring opening...

                                                          1. re: drewames03
                                                            hotoynoodle Feb 13, 2012 10:06 PM

                                                            that sounds promising! the lack of a decent watering hole always bums me out when i visit the coolidge.

                                                            1. re: drewames03
                                                              BostonZest Feb 14, 2012 07:09 AM

                                                              I love hearing Bourbon. That would make it worth a look for me.


                                                              1. re: BostonZest
                                                                hiddenboston Feb 14, 2012 07:50 AM

                                                                Bourbon is indeed a beautiful thing.

                                                                1. re: hiddenboston
                                                                  okra Feb 16, 2012 10:48 AM

                                                                  Is that a bumper sticker?


                                                                  1. re: okra
                                                                    hiddenboston Feb 16, 2012 11:24 AM

                                                                    Maybe I'll print some up this afternoon. :-b

                                                              2. re: drewames03
                                                                opinionatedchef Feb 18, 2012 11:55 PM

                                                                well, at least that's better than Brew and Chew.

                                                            2. MC Slim JB Feb 13, 2012 09:59 AM

                                                              Sweet Caroline's in the Fenway opens at 9pm on Sat, Feb 25: http://www.sweetcarolinesboston.com/Sweet_Carolines_Menu.pdf


                                                              7 Replies
                                                              1. re: MC Slim JB
                                                                bobot Feb 14, 2012 10:57 AM

                                                                Wow, that was a really, really long soft opening I guess. I had a beer there two months ago.

                                                                1. re: bobot
                                                                  hiddenboston Feb 14, 2012 11:42 AM

                                                                  Their soft opening may have been longer than the total opening time for Garden of Eat-In in Cambridge.

                                                                  1. re: bobot
                                                                    MC Slim JB Feb 14, 2012 12:08 PM

                                                                    I thought Sweet Caroline's had already opened, too -- I recognized them in my 2011 Devil's Dining Awards with the "Pu Pu Hot Pot Award for Dubious Restaurant Naming" (tied with Blue Inc.) -- but then I got an email inviting me to Saturday's "Grand Opening VIP Reception" (I demurred) which is to be followed by their Official Grand Opening to the General Public.


                                                                    1. re: MC Slim JB
                                                                      hiddenboston Feb 14, 2012 12:25 PM

                                                                      This clarifies things a bit. http://boston.eater.com/archives/2012...

                                                                      1. re: MC Slim JB
                                                                        ChocolateMilkshake Feb 26, 2012 07:56 AM

                                                                        And it seems like you made a wise decision to skip the "Grand Opening VIP Reception"...

                                                                        1. re: ChocolateMilkshake
                                                                          MC Slim JB Feb 26, 2012 08:25 AM

                                                                          Yes, see my comment about that blog post here: http://www.universalhub.com/2012/sweet-carolines-strikes-sour-note-food-blogger The Boston Foodie was the dude who published a rant on his blog (since deleted) about Chowhounds being grubby little plebes with dirt under their fingernails. Details of that little dust-up are here: http://www.universalhub.com/node/26172


                                                                          1. re: MC Slim JB
                                                                            jgg13 Feb 26, 2012 03:54 PM

                                                                            The best part of that link is the donsakladrobotthing showing up randomly in the comments.

                                                                  2. Bob Dobalina Feb 13, 2012 06:45 AM

                                                                    Looks like Mare in the North End has re-opened as Mare Oyster Bar, following its brief hiatus for re-design.


                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                    1. re: Bob Dobalina
                                                                      MC Slim JB Feb 13, 2012 06:59 AM

                                                                      The most interesting aspect of this announcement for me was the news that Mare's "official" name used to be Mare Natural Coastal Italian Restaurant. Who knew?


                                                                    2. MC Slim JB Feb 12, 2012 06:46 AM

                                                                      Looks like Moogy's Sandwich Shop in Brighton went up in flames this morning: http://www.universalhub.com/2012/four-alarm-fire-takes-out-brighton-store-block


                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                      1. re: MC Slim JB
                                                                        Unfoodie Feb 12, 2012 01:17 PM

                                                                        The updated article says the fire was across the street from Moogy's. Anyone have a visual?

                                                                        1. re: Unfoodie
                                                                          BostonZest Feb 12, 2012 02:22 PM

                                                                          It was across the street, started in Boston House of Pizza, or at least that was the name when google did street view.

                                                                          fire photos here:


                                                                      2. h
                                                                        hckybg Feb 11, 2012 02:09 PM

                                                                        RJ Gourmet, a coffee shop on Cambridge Street a bit east of Inman Square (near Fifth Street), is opening on Monday. They will be using beans from Barismo and have a nice looking La Marzocco GB/5 machine making the coffee.

                                                                        1. b
                                                                          bear Feb 11, 2012 11:14 AM

                                                                          I drove by a new place in Arlington Heights called The Savory Plate. It looks to be prepared foods/take-out. Not too much info on the web, but hiddenboston lists it as open.

                                                                          The menu is very broad and it's unclear whether they offer everything or have rotating selections. Australian Meat Pies caught my eye.


                                                                          Anyone tried it?

                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                          1. re: bear
                                                                            GretchenS Feb 14, 2012 03:03 PM

                                                                            No, but I will soon, it is basically around the corner from me. Competition for nearby Jackson's Kitchen and it may hurt both of them.

                                                                            1. re: GretchenS
                                                                              fantundo Feb 14, 2012 06:17 PM

                                                                              I stopped in today and bought a few things but haven't eaten any of them yet. They have a rotating menu and start offering the dinner selections around 5. Much of what they might not have that day is available frozen. There was quite a variety to choose from, a friendly staff, and everything looked fresh. Also noticed that the Meat House has starting selling some prepared foods. You could live in the Heights forever and never need to cook for yourswel again!

                                                                          2. m
                                                                            mwk Feb 10, 2012 01:54 PM

                                                                            I read about a new Nigerian restaurant called Suya Joint, which just opened last night in Roslindale Square. I definitely want to give it a try. The menu looks delicious:


                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                            1. re: mwk
                                                                              tatsu Feb 11, 2012 09:53 AM

                                                                              If it's anything like the Nigerian food stall at the Lowell Folk Fest, it's going to be the latest CH crush. Especially the goat stew.

                                                                              1. re: tatsu
                                                                                hotoynoodle Feb 11, 2012 11:27 AM

                                                                                oh! that goat stew! cruel of you to bring it up 6 months out of season! lol.

                                                                            2. b
                                                                              bear Feb 8, 2012 10:40 AM

                                                                              Armenian Market and Bakery on Elm St. in Watertown across from Target has opened. I stopped in yesterday to take a quick peek. They carry a small selection of groceries, cheeses and have a nice olive bar.

                                                                              They potential draw is the food prep counter. They have both chicken and beef shawarma (a sign said made from 90% beef and 10% lamb), along with soujouk (sp?) and basturma sandwiches. They also advertise fresh, hot lamejun.

                                                                              Unfortunately, the timing wasn't right so I didn't try anything. The shawarma looked good and worth trying, as did the sandwiches someone was getting for takeout.

                                                                              It looks like a work in progress as they figure out what they want to keep on the menu.

                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                              1. re: bear
                                                                                hiddenboston Feb 10, 2012 11:55 AM

                                                                                I can't wait to try the lamejun there. Nice to have another option for Armenian food around the area.

                                                                              2. m
                                                                                meeps2002 Feb 8, 2012 08:12 AM

                                                                                Just was on Grubstreet: Rose Buds in Davis


                                                                                1. s
                                                                                  Snowflake Feb 6, 2012 11:58 AM

                                                                                  Fins Sushi and Grill looked open for business last night after the game. I just called and they confirmed they are open - shortened hours tonight and standard hours tomorrow on which are roughly 11:30-10 or 11

                                                                                  1. hiddenboston Feb 6, 2012 09:10 AM

                                                                                    LeanWorks is opening in West Roxbury sometime this month.

                                                                                    1. y
                                                                                      y2000k Feb 4, 2012 11:32 AM

                                                                                      Moe's Southwest Grill is opening a branch in Waltham on Main Street, right next door to Mulan (at the street corner). It's not opened yet but looks like it'll be ready before end of the month. Its location used to be a corner convenience store.

                                                                                      Its facebook page says it'll open on Feb 23. 831 Main Street Waltham

                                                                                      8 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: y2000k
                                                                                        bear Feb 4, 2012 11:59 AM

                                                                                        Has anyone eaten at Moe's? I'd be psyched to have a decent burrito place so close to me.

                                                                                        1. re: bear
                                                                                          Jenny Ondioline Feb 4, 2012 01:13 PM

                                                                                          Allstonian and I have eaten at a Moe's in Albany NY a couple of times, because it's near the motel we usually stay at during the Old Songs festival. Don't hold your breath. It's maybe a half-step up from Chipotle.

                                                                                          1. re: Jenny Ondioline
                                                                                            Beachowolfe Feb 4, 2012 05:27 PM

                                                                                            Did you mean Chipolt-away?

                                                                                          2. re: bear
                                                                                            Gordough Feb 4, 2012 01:13 PM

                                                                                            I have tried the Moe's on Route 9 across from the Natick Mall. Eh. Pretty much the same quality as Qdoba, Chipotle, BOLOCO etc. They do have a salsa bar which is just ok. I think Ana's and Boca Grande are better products for less money.

                                                                                            1. re: Gordough
                                                                                              bear Feb 4, 2012 05:02 PM

                                                                                              Thanks, Jenny and Gordough. Sounds like I'd be better off heading to Zocalo in Arlington for my burrito fix unless I'm starving and craving burritos in downtown Waltham, in which case I'd probably head to Carl's for their very inauthentic but fun huge burritos.

                                                                                              The Zocalo carnitas burrito with a bit of chipotle salsa is pretty tasty.

                                                                                              1. re: bear
                                                                                                Trumpetguy Feb 4, 2012 06:05 PM

                                                                                                How 'bout that Mexican restaurant on Moody St. on the corner approaching the fire station? I wanna try it!

                                                                                                1. re: Trumpetguy
                                                                                                  carneyvore Feb 6, 2012 12:46 PM

                                                                                                  Habanero's on Moody St. has good margaritas and an array of salsas with the chips. Food is fine but servers & kitchen are slow. Bartenders are skilled.

                                                                                                  1. re: carneyvore
                                                                                                    bear Feb 24, 2012 05:39 PM

                                                                                                    Moe's is open. Driving by, my son noticed that they had a board listing Carvel Soft Serve flavors. That would be nice!

                                                                                        2. Boston_Otter Feb 3, 2012 08:36 AM

                                                                                          Folks on the Davis Square LiveJournal list are reporting that Namaskar, in Davis Square, has been completely closed all week after several weeks of very dodgy service and cooking. No word yet on whether it's temporary or permanent.

                                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                                          1. re: Boston_Otter
                                                                                            Jenny Ondioline Feb 3, 2012 11:00 AM

                                                                                            I'm afraid that would not surprise me one bit: the last time we went, the food was just dreadful. It was a real disappointment, because that was one of our standards before gigs at the Somerville Theater.

                                                                                            1. re: Boston_Otter
                                                                                              MC Slim JB Feb 3, 2012 12:49 PM

                                                                                              A shame: I remember Namaskar being good two or three years ago.


                                                                                              1. re: Boston_Otter
                                                                                                LStaff Feb 4, 2012 10:22 AM

                                                                                                My wife and I went a couple of weeks ago and it was as good as it has ever been. Very few customers the times we were there though.

                                                                                              2. v
                                                                                                VintageMolly Feb 3, 2012 08:19 AM

                                                                                                A new sushi restaurant has opened in the Park Square building. I believe it's called Samurai Express? Haven't been yet, but a co-worker described it as "better than supermarket quality." The menu looks like an ordinary lowest common denominator sushi restaurant, but it's basically the only non-sandwich/salad/soup lunch option in the immediate vicinity, so I expect it'll do well.

                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                1. re: VintageMolly
                                                                                                  bgavin Feb 15, 2012 01:08 PM

                                                                                                  I had lunch at the new Samurai Express in the Park Square Bldg late last week (Feb 9 or 10?).

                                                                                                  First of all the place is so poorly organized that my sense of order was scandalized. Why were 12-15 people milling around clutching menus? Had they ordered? Were they waiting for food to be prepared? How long might *I* have to wait? Why did I have to order from one person and pay at another place, if both staff had registers? Why was there a registered labelled "Order Here" with no one working there?

                                                                                                  Plus, a friend called in an order and got there to discover the order was still sitting on a pad near the phone and had never made it to the kitchen.

                                                                                                  I got their "Sushi/Sashimi Combo" which, despite it's name, was made up of 4 pieces of yellowtail sushi (they mean nigiri) and 6 pieces of yellowtail roll. This cost $11.50 and is a good buy since the four pieces of nigiri would have cost $2.75 each of $11 all by themselves. Like I got the roll for free.

                                                                                                  Not sure why their combos are the same sort of fish. In addition to the combo I had, they offer it with tuna and salmon.

                                                                                                  Bottom line, if Shaw's supermarket sushi is a 5 out of 10, this was a 6.5 (but I only tried one thing!)

                                                                                                  Couldn't help remembering that for $20 I could have had lunch at Oishii. #JustSaying

                                                                                                2. a
                                                                                                  AGM_Cape_Cod Feb 3, 2012 06:47 AM

                                                                                                  The new L.A. Burdick is open at 220 Clarendon Street opened on Monday. They don't have the cafe open yet so no hot drinks. They said they are waiting on the license but wanted to be open in time for Valentine's Day.

                                                                                                  1. n
                                                                                                    nightsky Feb 3, 2012 06:29 AM

                                                                                                    Swish Shabu opens in the Fenway (Peterborough Street row) on Monday.

                                                                                                    5 Replies
                                                                                                    1. re: nightsky
                                                                                                      Bob Dobalina Feb 3, 2012 06:36 AM

                                                                                                      That's a really clever name, since I think "shabu shabu" is the Japanese word for the swishing sound you make when you swish your food in the broth.

                                                                                                      1. re: Bob Dobalina
                                                                                                        hotoynoodle Feb 3, 2012 12:09 PM

                                                                                                        i didn't know that was the translation. i got a whole different connotation from the name. ;)

                                                                                                        1. re: hotoynoodle
                                                                                                          Bob Dobalina Feb 3, 2012 12:18 PM

                                                                                                          Too funny!

                                                                                                          Here's the wiki-thought on this: "The name Shabu Shabu is derived from the "swish swish" sound of cooking the meat in the pot."

                                                                                                          So we were both close.

                                                                                                          1. re: Bob Dobalina
                                                                                                            hiddenboston Feb 3, 2012 12:46 PM

                                                                                                            Too bad the new the new O Yummy in Allston and this place didn't combine. It could be called "O Yummy Swish Swish Shabu."

                                                                                                            1. re: hiddenboston
                                                                                                              hotoynoodle Feb 3, 2012 09:44 PM

                                                                                                              which could be hilarious after some sake. :)

                                                                                                    2. okra Feb 2, 2012 11:28 AM

                                                                                                      A sign in the storefront next to Golden Garden in Belmont promises

                                                                                                      "Gen Sushi

                                                                                                      Open Feb 8th"

                                                                                                      Golden Garden
                                                                                                      63 Concord Ave, Belmont, MA 02478

                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                      1. re: okra
                                                                                                        hiddenboston Feb 2, 2012 11:54 AM

                                                                                                        Next to? Whew--for a minute I was thinking that Golden Garden was no more (my eyes are tired today).

                                                                                                      2. MC Slim JB Feb 1, 2012 08:26 PM

                                                                                                        Saw some construction work going on today for the first time in a long while at Zai, the Japanese place (yakitori, maybe?) going into the South End spot formerly occupied by Joe V's.


                                                                                                        14 Replies
                                                                                                        1. re: MC Slim JB
                                                                                                          meeps2002 Feb 2, 2012 08:25 AM


                                                                                                          This looks like it will be a fun spot

                                                                                                          1. re: meeps2002
                                                                                                            Matt H Feb 2, 2012 11:51 AM

                                                                                                            A serious Yakatori place would be great to have around here. Also with the Two O Ya chefs opening up that Ramen place, we could be filling two major voids in the coming months.

                                                                                                            1. re: Matt H
                                                                                                              MC Slim JB Feb 3, 2012 06:10 AM

                                                                                                              Would it be pessimistic to suspect that Zai will offer a pretty safe, bowdlerized version of yakitori? Few if any scary chicken parts, is my guess.


                                                                                                              1. re: MC Slim JB
                                                                                                                Nab Feb 3, 2012 06:32 AM

                                                                                                                Interesting to see they've got the entire year mapped out for Japanese cultural classes with a focus on traditional elements of the Japanese cuisine.

                                                                                                                1. re: Nab
                                                                                                                  tatsu Feb 3, 2012 08:14 AM

                                                                                                                  Very interesting, they have classes set for the entire year!

                                                                                                                  My favorite place in NYC does an "omakase" of it, and it's basically the entire chicken. The oyster, a rarely appreciated item here, (Catalyst does a meh pasta dish with it.) really shines in this format, as other parts, such neck skin. The breast is definitely the most boring by far, but can be tarted up with shiso leaves, etc.

                                                                                                                  I'm pretty hopeful for this place. Yakitori is very common but like ramen, can reach sublime heights. The true specialists are definitely masters and it's even more fun to watch than sushi. My favorite chef in NY, I just have tremendous respect for him and I think he's the best chef on a grill of any sort in the city.

                                                                                                                  So I have really high standards but anyone brave enough to be the first in Boston, kudos. Japanese food is criminally neglected here. People have no idea what they are missing.

                                                                                                                  1. re: tatsu
                                                                                                                    Tzonis Feb 14, 2012 07:36 AM


                                                                                                                    which place in NYC are you referring to?


                                                                                                                    1. re: Tzonis
                                                                                                                      tatsu Feb 14, 2012 08:30 AM

                                                                                                                      Tori Shin. I have tried all the Totto outlets - Tori Shin is in a league all it's own. Heck, even the vegetable omakase is better than the chicken at the Tottos. Fighting words but I don't mess around.

                                                                                                                      1. re: tatsu
                                                                                                                        hckybg Feb 14, 2012 11:52 AM

                                                                                                                        Where are the other Totto's? I've only been to the Midtown one. I didn't realize there were others.

                                                                                                                        1. re: hckybg
                                                                                                                          tatsu Feb 14, 2012 02:29 PM

                                                                                                                          They are scattered all over town, they also run Aburiya Kinnosuke, a robataya, which is a larger format of grilling. Still, even that is outdone by Robataya, which is very close to the NYTimes building.

                                                                                                                          1. re: tatsu
                                                                                                                            hckybg Feb 14, 2012 02:49 PM

                                                                                                                            I see, I didn't realize Yakitori Totto was affiliated with Totto Ramen, etc. Makes sense.

                                                                                                                        2. re: tatsu
                                                                                                                          Mike5966 Feb 14, 2012 12:13 PM

                                                                                                                          Hey tatsu, I agree with your assessment of Tori Shin v. Totto (and also Taisho, which is a distant 3rd to me). I've had a bunch of yakitori in Tokyo including the little alley right outside of Shinjuku station and I think about yakitori at least in passing almost every time I wonder what I'm gonna eat for dinner even though I know it doesn't exist in Boston yet.

                                                                                                                          My biggest hope for Zai is that they will offer a good approximation of the true Japanese yakitori experience... smell hits you the second you walk by close, with multiple specialty offerings like hearts and gizzards and oysters and even chicken sashimi. It would be a shame if they had shrimp, beef, mushrooms, etc., in place of all of the true chicken offerings like you used to see on some sidecar yakitori menus.

                                                                                                                          Does anyone have a better idea of the actual opening date? I'm guessing sometime before 3/11 which is when they look like they offer their first class.

                                                                                                                          1. re: Mike5966
                                                                                                                            MC Slim JB Feb 14, 2012 12:22 PM

                                                                                                                            Work on Zai is definitely steadily progressing. It looked like they'd gotten the dining room grill installed when I peeked in a couple of days ago.


                                                                                                                            1. re: Mike5966
                                                                                                                              tatsu Feb 14, 2012 02:32 PM

                                                                                                                              Always glad to see someone with similar tastes, Mike. Your hopes for Zai are really on point...a bunch of us CH'ers lamented the other day that Boston does not have any specialist restaurants, which is of course antithetical to Japanese restaurants. YumYum threw out "Except Cupcakes!" which made us all laugh.

                                                                                                                    2. re: MC Slim JB
                                                                                                                      hckybg Feb 3, 2012 06:42 AM

                                                                                                                      Can you have a yakitori only restaurant and keep the menu so narrow? Given the crowds at Yakitori Totto in New York, I'm hopeful that they will realize the potential market they have in a place that is a bit more challenging and ambitious.

                                                                                                              2. c
                                                                                                                Chocomom Feb 1, 2012 05:59 PM

                                                                                                                I went tonight and the new banh mi shop in Randolph (next door to Fred's Seafood). They had just opened on Monday.

                                                                                                                I've always judge banh mi places by their pork sandwich. Sadly, I'd choose badly. Their version is BBQ minced pork that is more like minced lap cheong. They get their bread from Chau bakery in Dorchester (personally not a fan). The veggies are fresh and plentiful and they use english cukes instead of the standard. The pate is very peppery.

                                                                                                                I believe all the sandwiches were priced at $3.50 as were most of their drinks.

                                                                                                                I do like that they have vegetarian options too. On the board they have a lemongrass tofu listed but when I asked if it was available now I was told that they have other veggie "meat" options too and you just need to ask.

                                                                                                                If I wanted grilled pork banh mi, I will go to N&H subs at the other end of town. Might go back and give the lemongrass tofu a try.

                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                1. re: Chocomom
                                                                                                                  SeaSide Tomato Feb 3, 2012 08:34 AM

                                                                                                                  hmm another bahn mi place. yay. hope other options are better. still love N&H.

                                                                                                                2. g
                                                                                                                  Guinness02122 Feb 1, 2012 02:06 PM

                                                                                                                  Looks lik Stats on High Street is open.

                                                                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                                                                  1. re: Guinness02122
                                                                                                                    southie_chick Feb 1, 2012 07:44 PM

                                                                                                                    Not sure what's going on with Stats - there was an Dunkin's iced coffe cup on one of the tables tonite but I haven't seen any customers yet (just people on there for interviews). I'll have to take a look at lunchtime tomorrow to see if they're open yet - I thought they were doing both lunch & dinner so maybe they're just starting off with lunch (since there's no one in there at 5PM when I walk by the place when I'm heading home).

                                                                                                                    1. re: southie_chick
                                                                                                                      Guinness02122 Feb 11, 2012 02:07 PM

                                                                                                                      I walked in the door yesterday, and it looked like a business meeting was going on. Not open yet.

                                                                                                                  2. j
                                                                                                                    Jenny Ondioline Feb 1, 2012 01:42 PM

                                                                                                                    The seemingly abandoned Allston Diner is finally open on Cambridge Street.

                                                                                                                    1. hotoynoodle Feb 1, 2012 01:18 PM

                                                                                                                      back bay morton's is closed. company was purchased by landry's group. the seaport location will remain open.

                                                                                                                      5 Replies
                                                                                                                      1. re: hotoynoodle
                                                                                                                        hckybg Feb 1, 2012 02:15 PM

                                                                                                                        I thought I heard something about them moving to the old Borders location on Newbury? Maybe that's not true? Or maybe it is why they closed?

                                                                                                                        1. re: hckybg
                                                                                                                          hotoynoodle Feb 1, 2012 03:28 PM

                                                                                                                          that was pending under the old ownership, but i haven't heard if that is still a go.

                                                                                                                          1. re: hotoynoodle
                                                                                                                            hotoynoodle Feb 3, 2012 12:06 PM

                                                                                                                            eta: a few staff members will be absorbed by the seaport location, but i wouldn't hold my breath that a relocation of the back bay store is imminent.

                                                                                                                        2. re: hotoynoodle
                                                                                                                          Gabatta Feb 3, 2012 11:49 AM

                                                                                                                          I think I am in the minority here, but I liked the Back bay Morton's space. I know people griped it didn't have windows, but that is the way all Morton's were before recently. I thought the atmosphere was cozy. The Seaport location is part of the new wave of Morton's. As far as steakhouses go, I think the old Morton's had consistent service, good beef and it is one place I was never served an overcooked steak. At the end of the day the city can afford to lose a high end steak house, but I will miss this Mortons. The scene in my old neighborhood has changed a lot with the closing or moving of Morton's, L'Espalier and Capital Grill, which were all walkable without crossing Boylston. The new spaces for each are more commercial and less what I am looking for.

                                                                                                                          1. re: Gabatta
                                                                                                                            hotoynoodle Feb 3, 2012 12:08 PM

                                                                                                                            with the new ownership, the back bay location is not the only one shuttered. the revenue simply didn't make them viable anymore.

                                                                                                                        3. n
                                                                                                                          nachovegas Feb 1, 2012 09:51 AM

                                                                                                                          Lone Star Taco opened next door to Deep Ellum in Allston yesterday! It's gonna be good!

                                                                                                                          1. m
                                                                                                                            maxinboston Feb 1, 2012 09:50 AM

                                                                                                                            Technically January, but Deep Ellum's new taco spot, Lone Star Taco Bar, opened last night.

                                                                                                                            1. CocoDan Feb 1, 2012 07:29 AM

                                                                                                                              Alba in Quincy Center has opened its new and expanded dining room. Old dining room has been converted to all cocktail lounge. New space also has a private dining room/function room that looks to be able to handle a fairly good sized party. They did a nice job as usual, focusing on wine.

                                                                                                                              6 Replies
                                                                                                                              1. re: CocoDan
                                                                                                                                hiddenboston Feb 1, 2012 07:51 AM

                                                                                                                                Did Blue 22 close yet? I heard it may have closed over the weekend?

                                                                                                                                1. re: hiddenboston
                                                                                                                                  CocoDan Feb 1, 2012 09:14 AM

                                                                                                                                  Haven't been by there recently, but I wouldn't be surprised if they're gone soon. Actually had friends look at the place for a possible blues club. Blue 22 was not very good. We need a great Mexican restaurant in Quincy. Please God!!!

                                                                                                                                  1. re: CocoDan
                                                                                                                                    southie_chick Feb 1, 2012 07:40 PM

                                                                                                                                    Blue 22 did close yesterday - I know it was sold so I'll have to ask the former owner (who I work with) if he knows what's going in there.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: southie_chick
                                                                                                                                      mwk Feb 10, 2012 01:50 PM

                                                                                                                                      Looks like Blue22 is being replaced by an Indian restaurant called Sher-a-Punjab, according to the Ledger:


                                                                                                                                    2. re: CocoDan
                                                                                                                                      jjbourgeois Feb 3, 2012 04:28 AM

                                                                                                                                      Blue 22 Started out good, but after the first 6 months it slid down the tubes. I don't understand how they managed to stay in business so long. Everytime I went by, they only had 3-4 people at the bar.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: CocoDan
                                                                                                                                        SeaSide Tomato Feb 3, 2012 08:31 AM

                                                                                                                                        A blues club would be the best!!!

                                                                                                                                        How I miss the Yard Rock. Even the Blue Note Exchange had something going for it. Heck-I'd even take Fireflies back for the music. And to keep this on food--maybe this hypothetical blues club would have some nibbies, too.

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