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10 new restaurants to try right now

Where to eat and drink in Boston this fall

Moon Bar is the more casual spot located downstairs from Mooncusser. The menu includes dishes such as ceviche, chickpea fries with habanero aioli, black bass wrapped in banana leaf, and lamb burgers.Brian Samuels

As the weather gets colder, Boston’s dining scene continues to bloom. Recent months have seen the return of Eastern Standard, alongside sister establishments All That Fish + Oyster and cocktail bar Equal Measure. Raffles Boston hotel opened, serving its signature Singapore Slings at Long Bar & Terrace; inside is Amar (see below), with a new Jody Adams spot, La Padrona, on the way. Also coming soon: Blue Ribbon Brasserie, in the Fenway alongside Pescador and Blue Ribbon Sushi; June Bug in Somerville, featuring wood-fired fare from the folks behind Field & Vine; Merai, a sibling to Brookline Thai favorite Mahaniyom; and more. There is plenty to look forward to. Here are 10 spots to try soon:



In a South End brownstone, chef Weifa Chen takes the knowledge he gained working at places like Masa, New York’s three Michelin star sushi restaurant, to create tasting menus of hairy crab with uni and caviar, sea bream with truffles, fatty tuna nigiri, and more. Don’t expect the elaborate flights of fancy sometimes found in stateside sushi: Chen’s specialty is pared-down Edomae-style sushi, in which fish is cured, marinated, or otherwise treated, an evolution from long-ago days when spoilage was more of a factor. The restaurant has just 10 seats, with two seatings a night, and reservations are required. Chen and wife Carrie Ko run 311 together; they are hoping to obtain a liquor license, and Japanese teas and sodas are on offer in the meantime. The 18-course omakase is a splurge at $230 per person, so book this one to mark a special occasion.

605 Tremont St., South End, Boston, 781-831-0311,

Kristian Vasilev, general manager at Amar, sets the tables. Pat Greenhouse/Globe Staff


New England has a substantial Portuguese population, and wonderful restaurants to match, particularly around New Bedford and Fall River. In Back Bay, Amar is perhaps the most storied, literally: It is on Floor 17 of the Raffles Boston hotel. Here, chef George Mendes (another former New Yorker with Michelin stars, for his restaurant Aldea) explores his own Portuguese heritage via salt cod croquettes with red pepper aioli, Maine lobster with Azorean pineapple, and a version of arroz de pato, the duck-and-rice dish that was a signature at Aldea.


Raffles Boston, 40 Trinity Place, Back Bay, Boston, 617-351-8888,

D.W. French is a French restaurant in the Fenway from chef Douglass Williams.Emily Kan Photography

D.W. French

Chef Douglass Williams has become known for Italian food through his Mida restaurants in the South End, Newton, and most recently East Boston. But he has cooked in Paris, as well as at French and French-influenced restaurants such as Radius and New York’s Corton. D.W. French, his Fenway brasserie, is an ode to simple, classic French fare — onion soup, escargots, steak frites, roast chicken, profiteroles. Sommelier Seth Gerber’s French wine list is accompanied by a helpful map explaining the regions. If you like Champagne with your oeufs, you’ll want to know that D.W. French just started serving weekend brunch, too.

1391 Boylston St., Fenway, Boston, 617-865-9900,

If you’ve been to one of the dinners Vincenzo Lê (above) and Duong Huynh have hosted at their Cicada Coffee Bar in Cambridge, you have a sense of what to expect from The Eaves.Suzanne Kreiter/Globe Staff

The Eaves

If you’ve been to one of the dinners Vincenzo Lê and Duong Huynh have hosted at their Cicada Coffee Bar in Cambridge, you have a sense of what to expect from The Eaves — food inspired by Vietnam in a setting informed by the distinctive aesthetic of the owners, both trained architects. The Eaves is a pocket-size restaurant in Somerville’s Bow Market: dim, atmospheric, hand-hewn, welcoming. Its menu is pocket-size, too, and might include dishes such as duck gyoza in broth, seafood noodle salad, short rib in betel leaves with fresh rice noodles, and congee with tiny shrimp. Drink sake, natural wine, and cocktails that incorporate ginger, tamarind, turmeric, and more.


1 Bow Market Way, Union Square, Somerville, Instagram @midnight_eaves

Creamy chipotle rice mixed with sautéed shrimp, calamari, and spices at El Tacuba in Medford.Carlin Stiehl for The Boston Globe

El Tacuba

Brothers Alvaro and Andrés Sandoval won a following for tortas and more at Tenoch, with destinations around town. At their new Medford restaurant, El Tacuba, the menu continues to showcase the cuisine of their native Mexico while covering more ground: empanadas and guacamole, tacos and tostadas, fried stuffed plantains and a glorious array of seafood dishes, from ceviches to sauteed scallops in creamy poblano and jalapeno sauce. Margaritas are just the start when it comes to drinks — but a very good start indeed.

35 Salem St., Medford, 617-390-0600,

Sicilian pie from Gufo in East Cambridge.Handout


Cantabrigians who have enjoyed SRV and the Salty Pig in Boston now have a restaurant from the same team closer to home. Gufo (it means “owl” in Italian) is one of those third places we all need, a home away from home and work. The bar, cafe, and restaurant is open from morning to night, serving coffee drinks and sandwiches, cocktails and pasta. Small plates like head-on shrimp in a warming Fresno chile sauce and fried dough with prosciutto shine. No matter what, you’re going to get pizza, lightly charred, with beautifully chewy crust and an array of toppings to choose from. And there’s a bocce court in the generous outdoor dining space.


660 Cambridge St., Cambridge, 617-945-9734,

Mark Cina oversees the food at Alcove, Hook + Line, and H + L Market.Drew Katz Graffito SP

Hook + Line

This Seaport seafood spot from Alcove proprietor Tom Schlesinger-Guidelli is opening ... any minute now. Chef Mark Cina, who has cooked locally at Craigie Street Bistrot, UpStairs on the Square, and Yvonne’s, as well as in California with chefs like Corey Lee and Daniel Patterson, is behind the menu of modernized seafood classics. Think branzino with Calabrian chile crisp, shrimp toast, and stuffies, with the wood-fired oven playing a central role. The adjacent H + L Market opened several weeks ago, serving clam shack favorites such as hot and cold lobster rolls and fried clams. It also sells fresh fish from the local piers, tinned seafood, grab-and-go chowder, and more.

10 Fan Pier Boulevard, Seaport, Boston,

Chef Carl Dooley.Nathan Klima for The Boston Globe

Moon Bar

Upstairs, at the restaurant Mooncusser, chef Carl Dooley serves seasonal tasting menus that weave together international flavors and local ingredients: carrot soup with lime yogurt and harissa, celery root ravioli with Maine uni and Meyer lemon, roasted venison with maitake mushrooms. Now, downstairs, there’s a more casual and affordable spot to moon over. At Moon Bar, Mooncusser sous chef Nelson Whittingham is running the show, with Jake Smith (Uni) at the bar. You’ll find the likes of mahi mahi ceviche, sweet potato samosas with tamarind chutney, black bass wrapped in a banana leaf with pineapple sambal, and lamb burgers with tomato chutney. Try a classic pina colada, or maybe the Cat’s Pajamas, a house potion made with black rum, charred pineapple gum, and toasted cinnamon.


129 Columbus Ave., Boston, 617-917-5193,

Taggliatelle with bolognese and reggiano cheese at Stella.Sean Proctor/Globe Staff


Party like it’s 2005 in the South End’s hottest hot spot — only it’s 2023, and we’re in Newton. Chef Evan Deluty’s original Stella, closed during the pandemic, returns as a tiny, casual, nut-free neighborhood spot. Dishes like arancini, gnocchi, and sausage pizza will recall the original, while additions like matzoh ball soup will not. Do not worry: The beloved bolognese is here.

549 Commonwealth Ave., Newton, 617-467-4656,

ZaZiBar, an offshoot of a popular Hyde Park fusion spot.Candice Conner


Chef and entrepreneur OIrie Roberts is on a roll. He runs Hyde Park favorite ZaZ, which expanded to Boston City Hall last year. He spearheads ZaZ Fest, celebrating Afro-Caribbean culture through food, music, art, and fashion. ZaZ Foundation, providing culinary training to underserved youth and adults, is in its early stages. And there’s more to come. Most recently, Roberts debuted this Seaport bar celebrating the flavors of his native Grenada. At ZaZiBar, enjoy queso lobster chips, coco shrimp, jerk chicken sandwiches, jackfruit empanadas, and more, along with spicy mango mojitos and other cocktails to put you in a Spice Island state of mind.

60 Seaport Boulevard, Seaport, Boston, 857-350-4068,

Olrie Roberts creates Asian-Caribbean fusion at Zaz restaurant in Hyde Park. Now, at ZaZiBar, enjoy queso lobster chips, coco shrimp, jerk chicken sandwiches, jackfruit empanadas, and more.

Devra First can be reached at Follow her @devrafirst.